As the summer season begins to fade into fall, leaves start changing colors, the sky turns a bit bluer, and pumpkin patches begin to grace the rural roads of Western NC. Pair that with the ever-popular apple cider and pumpkin spice lattes popping up in coffee shops across the state.

Your summer crops have likely died off at this point, leaving your yard littered with brown or beige plants that are well past their time or barely hanging on for those last warm, sunny days. You may have slowed down on your lawncare routine as you prepare to put away your garden tools and lawn mowers for the season, saving them for their next debut in spring. Weeds, overgrown grass and hedges are indicative of the change in seasons.

You may be ready to rest and call it quits for the season, but alas, there are still things to be done!

Since the weather is cooling down, you’re given the unique opportunity to take advantage of more tolerable temps, making summer clean up a little easier on the ol’ bones, as well as being able to plant bulbs for springtime flowers, and planting cool weather veggie crops. Below are some tips for fall gardening and clean up success!

You just can’t beat fall in Western North Carolina. From taking a drive to view the color on the Blue Ridge Parkway to fire pit parties in your backyard, the cooler temperatures and scenic views of our fall season can offer a relaxing change from the warmer days of summer. But one fall activity that many people dread is cleaning out their gutters. Falling leafs, small twigs, and other debris can clog gutters quickly, making it difficult for water to drain and causing a potential hazard for ice blockage during winter. Luckily, there are some time-saving solutions for getting rid of the gunk in your gutters!

Ball and Burlap (otherwise known as B&B) trees have been planted, allowed to grow, then dug up and sold to nurseries, where they can be kept for several months. They’re sold with their root balls wrapped in — you guessed it — burlap, which is usually covered with a wire cage to protect it. While B&B trees are more difficult to handle than bare-root trees due to their maturity, they’re also generally hardier and will give you the look of a tree that’s been established in your lawn.

B&B trees can be planted anytime during the growing season. They sometimes need to be lifted by machinery, as they can be quite heavy. Follow these seven steps to successfully plant a B&B tree:

Your lawn irrigation system is much like the water pipes in your home — when you don’t prepare it for winter temperatures, any water left inside it can freeze, causing the pipes, sprinkler heads, and manifold (the tubing that distributes water to the valves) to burst. Winterizing your irrigation system before winter arrives can save you costly repairs in the future.

Here in the mountains of Western North Carolina, we know a thing or two about sloping yards. Some people think a yard that slopes is difficult to work with, but we happen to believe that it provides an amazing opportunity for beautiful, innovative landscaping! Whether you have a gentle slope or are perched on the side of a mountain, we have some great ideas for creating a landscape you’ll love.