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Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

by | Aug 17, 2011 | Gardens & Outdoor Rooms

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Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

It is time to think about preparing your yard for Fall! Depending on what part of the country you are in, you are either excited to escape the heat and enjoy a cooler fall or you are hoping more warm sunny days will arrive before the trick or treaters show up at your door. But no matter how you feel about it, fall is on its way and summer will come to an end. So what can we do now to be prepared for the change in season around our home?

Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now Remember when we got our puppy Jack a month ago, even though we weren’t fully prepared for a new dog in the family? Clearly we are not really the “prepare in advance” kind of people. One of the things we were definitely not prepared for was how DIRTY Jack would get while flying through our yard with the energy and exuberance only puppies can muster. And with that realization came the inevitable thoughts of how bad it will be outside when it is raining all the time. Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now Because of the fear of muddy puppy feet all winter, I started thinking about adding more stepping stones and pathways to prepare for fall and winter. We can either get ready for fall NOW and do the work on a sunny day, or we can put it off for a nice cold RAINY fall day. Hmmm. Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

Sunset Magazine: E. Spencer Toy

Here are the 5 projects we need to tackle and maybe you do too!

1. Do some late summer landscaping, such as adding fresh gravel or stepping stones to walking areas and some fall planting.

Here are a few great articles I found on easy-care fall landscaping that might inspire you as much as they did me! It is not too late to improve your yard!

Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now Better Homes & Gardens

2. Freshen and Touch Up Exterior Paint.

Bloggers like to paint interior furniture and accessories to make them pretty, but now is a great time to do some routine maintenance and touch up paint on the exterior of your home, including fences, garage doors, and the front steps. Fresh paint will not only protect exposed wood and siding from the elements, but fresh paint will increase the value of your home. And caulking around windows and doors needs to be done before it starts raining!

Here is a helpful article on how to paint the exterior items around your home:

Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

3. Clean all patios, furniture and outdoor umbrellas from all the pollen and dirt collected over the summer.

If the climate in your area is favorable, you can still enjoy a few more weeks of using your furniture (all clean!) before you put the furniture away or cover it for the winter.

Need some tips on how to clean your outdoor furniture? I’m happy to share a couple of articles I found!

Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

Better Homes & Gardens

4. Clean your garage or shed and make room for outdoor patio cushions, garden tools & accessories.

Ok, so if you garage is a little scary right now, how about cleaning it up before the weather turns cold and wet and you have to risk life and limb to venture out there in the cold months?  I’ll admit our garage is a real hazard, which is why I’m mentioning this tip. Ok actually I’m hoping my husband is reading this and will get the hint. While you are cleaning up the garage or shed, make sure you you set aside some space to put your outdoor accessories and cushions when you are ready to pack them away for the winter months.

Here is an inspiring article from Better Homes & Gardens:

Preparing Your Yard & Garden for Fall: 5 Things to Do Now

5. Clean Your Gutters and Downspouts.

I know, this is the tip no one really wants to think about but everyone who owns a house needs to deal with. It is the project we dread…cleaning gutters and downspouts. Yes, that is a picture of our dirty gutter with a tree growing out of it. A TREE!!! Cleaning out and wiping off gutters when the skies are blue is much more fun (fun?) than when it is freezing and pouring down rain. And of course, by cleaning out your gutters you will save yourself possibly thousands of dollars of potential damage around your home from clogged drains.

If you can hire someone trustworthy to do the job for you, go for it.  But if you are going to tackle this job yourself (or you husband is), here is a great article from Apartment Therapy to tell you how:

What is the one home maintenance project you are DREADING but need to get done before Fall?


  1. Simple Daisy

    Cleaning gutters is the one thing we neglect the most:(
    I looks we need to start getting busy prepping our little place for autumn:):)
    Jack is simply adorable! I bet he’s a lot of fun when he’s not in trouble!! Puppies are the best…..but I have to say…i’m glad my girls are out of the puppy stage!! Yeah for no moe chewing!
    Happy Wednesday!

  2. Lynn from For Love or Funny

    I definitely need to touch up the paint on our deck before we are inundated with snow and ice over the winter. BTW, I’ll babysit for Jack whenever you need a hand!

    • Melissa

      Thank you!! I’m sure we’ll be calling you! LOL, he is a handful!

  3. Claudia De La Cruz

    I need to apply a few more coats of water sealant on my deck before winter/snow arrive. And let’s see…paint the benches and rocking chair on my front porch, get the yard ready for fall/winter, paint the wrought iron fence on the front porch and….

    Yes, it’s a long list :-(

  4. Imperfect

    We absolutely need to clean our gutters. These are great tips for us seeing as this is our first fall with an actual yard. I can already imagine all the raking that’s coming in the next couple of months!

  5. Gina

    We have got to get our deck repaired and re-finished. It looks so beaten down and sad. ): We’ll have to wait for temps to come down a bit and hopefully we will get some rain AFTER the project is complete.

  6. Ashley

    I cannot get over how cute that dirty puppy is!!

    Our house is a long way from looking pretty, but there are a couple of things I would really like to get done before winter rolls around (even better if it’s before fall!)

    Build our shed – we currently have no garage and no outbuildings!

    Paint my concrete window sills – they’re covered in flaking white paint right now.

    Cleaning the gutters should also be on the list…

  7. susan

    Argh. 1) garage-because it’s full of Mom&Dad stuff&not only is it heartbraking but it’s stuffed-waiting for nephew pickups&i am nowhere ready to bring in items promised Momma would treasure as she has. Ouch. 2) prime&trim enclosed porch aka office windows,only ones not replaced in 2000 cuz Daddy&I had just done new redwood sills&storms 2yrs prior. 3) get gutters cleaned&downspouts replaced-just as cheap&better for drains to remove full downs&not clog drains. So yeeha, I have 3 out of 5 to do! Aw geez…lanscape fabric&mulch front rosebeds…make that 4 out of 5. (sigh)

  8. Fairfield House


    Your puppy, Jack, is adorable and has me considering getting another. Scout (our little rat terrier) is so lonesome since Buster died.

    Thanks for sharing these great reminders to tackle outdoor projects before the colder weather arrives. We are going to be installing an in-ground sprinkler system.

    Your Friend,

  9. Carla

    Jack is adorable and oh my how dirty he can get. You know he’s not gonna use those stepping stones right? LOL.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Melissa

      Oh, way to burst my bubble. Ha, I can dream, right?

  10. bridget {bake at 350}

    Great tips! One chore I’ve been putting off is cleaning the windows. Luckily, we don’t have to have it all finished before fall comes…it’s still 80 degrees then!

  11. Erin

    What a timely post…I’ve been working on painting my shed this week. And I was just sitting outside this morning while my Pug did her ‘business’ thinking about what I need to do this year to make it easier for her to go outside in the snow. I do think getting more stones put down out back will help alot. Thanks for the inspiration. :)

  12. Kaye

    It is going to be 104 today where I am!!! I would so love to be planting fall flowers. I think I would rather work in the rain! Thanks for the reminder of fall! I am sure it will get here!

    • Melissa

      I would agree on that, 104 is NOT pleasant. :-)

  13. Faith

    Thanks again for inspiring me! Unfortunately my projects will have to wait about a month. Its still mid-90s here in Ga. Thanks also for sharing your gutter issues. Now I don’t feel so bad. Yep, I know all about trees in gutters.(: Hmmm…maybe if I put the refuse from cleaning the gutters into the compost pile. Obviously its a good growing medium. hee hee

  14. teresa

    We had to cover our rain gutters a couple of years ago…the woodpeckers with fill they up with acrons…truly to the top with arcons…{we have over 100 oak trees}
    Thanks for the tips.

  15. Amy {The Idea Room}

    What an adorable little puppy! Love the tips and the references. I definitely could get outside and freshen up some areas with some new paint! Our gutters are probably also due for a good cleaning.

  16. Diane

    OMGosh – Jack is the most adorable puppy I think I have ever seen. I have a set of paws to clean off daily too. My oldest who is bringing a dog home with her when she comes home for the holidays to stay with my hubby and I. I am not sure I am ready for what life will be like with another dog in the house – 4 more paws to wipe off :)

    I also wanted to say thanks for featuring my bathroom re-do yesterday .XO
    My best- Diane

    • Melissa

      Thank you Diane, and you are welcome :-) Loved the bathroom re-do!

  17. Christine Aldinger

    lollllllllllllllllllll omg i just love that dirty lil Jack hahahaha…..hope you are looking for a old vintage metal washing tub!!

  18. Rachel

    Jack is adorable! Believe me, I know all about the things a puppy can track in. Just this morning our 1-year-old lab (do I still call him a puppy?) rolled in something… gross, and then came into the house. But I love him all the same! Thanks for the great tips!

  19. courtney

    We woke up to a waterfall this morning coming down from our porch roof. Clearly its time to clean our gutters. WORST JOB

  20. carolyn

    melissa- a teeny bit of advice from one golden doodle owner to another as you think about your yard in the spring…. whatever you do, DO NOT get triple shredded black mulch. i speak from experience!! oh the insanity of it all.

    that said- there is not much more adorable than a golden doodle. the puppy months will give way to sweet dog years and it will all be worth it (well….you know what i mean!)

    thanks for the continued inspiration!



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