Watching the summer turn into fall can be a sad time for those that love to spend their spare time in the warmer months in their garden. This is a relaxing and rewarding pastime for millions of people and having a great outdoor landscape can actually even improve the value of your real estate. In fact, a local real estate agent tells us that not only does great landscaping increase your home's value, great curb appeal can also help it sell faster! If you've built up a great garden during the summer months and don't want to start from scratch then you need to think about winterizing your garden once summer ends.

The first thing you're going to want to do is make sure you're raking the leaves and pulling up all of the annuals that are currently in your outdoor spaces. If you've got a compost pile in the back of your property then you can add all of these things to that heap. You will also want to cut down all of your perennials almost to the ground and do one last weeding before the frost and snow come. This will keep the weeds from getting a head start when next spring does start.

Next, you will want to deal with all of your bulbs. Dig up the tender ones from last season and plant new ones for the spring. When you're ready to set up that new patio set in March or April you will have a head start on the plants that will start growing for your spring garden. Add an organic lightweight mulch of things like shredded leaves and pine needles over top of the perennials to keep them protected during the coldest months.

Just because the weather has turned colder, that doesn't mean that your work is done with all of the plants in your garden and around your home. If you're experiencing an especially dry fall then you might want to water evergreen trees and shrubs in your garden. You can even help the wildflowers get through the winter months. Mow this area and add a layer of mulch if you want them to return after the new year.

If you have a vegetable garden then this is another area that you will need to take care of before the frost hits. There are some veggies that even grow better in the cooler months. If you're trying to grow asparagus, garlic and broccoli then you could cover them with some sort of roofing or a tarp to protect them from the frost. But this might not work if you're living in below freezing climates as it will still get too cold. It is only good for those living in more temperate climates.

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