With a full, hopeful new year ahead of us, it’s the perfect time to get our ducks in a row! This landscape maintenance checklist for Edmonton will give you a broad overview of what to expect this year, so you can plan ahead and make the most of your time outdoors.
As you can imagine, there’s not much you can do in the landscape now—but you’ve got plenty of time to dream!
- Clear snow as quickly as you can to prevent thick ice from forming on your hardscapes.
- Remove, clean, and store holiday decorations for next year.
- Keep bird feeders filled and clean them weekly to keep feathered friends fed and healthy. If you’re something of a bird watcher, consider adding a heated water source to your landscape.
- Start thinking about the landscape features you might want to install in the spring, and book a consultation as early as you can!
Like January, February is a pretty relaxed month in the Edmonton landscape. Focus on ensuring landscape features are in good repair and preparing for the work to come in the spring.
- Replace outdoor light fixtures as necessary.
- Continue clearing snow as needed.
- Use de-icing products that minimize salt damage to your landscape.
- Purchase spring grass seed, topsoil, and fertilizers before the stores get too busy!
In March, we’re still a ways away from our last frost date, but spring is drawing nearer.
- If you’re having any major landscape renovations done, aim to start in March to leave as much time as possible to enjoy the final product!
- As the snow begins to melt, clear away any debris on the lawn or garden that surfaces.
- The ground is still frozen or soft, so avoid dethatching for a while yet, or you could cause damage to healthy sod.
- Take note of any drainage issues, like pooling water, and book a consultation to see what can be done about them.
- Purchase pre-emergent herbicide to control lawn weeds before their seeds germinate. It may still be too early to apply the product in March, but you can beat the crowds and stock up now. Application windows are usually very specific and vary by product—consult with the vendor on when to apply your chosen product and have your spreader ready when it’s go-time!
April is still too early for planting, but by now, the ground may be workable enough to get quite a bit done.
- Clean out your eavestroughs if you haven’t yet!
- Melting snow has likely displaced or degraded the mulch on your beds and around trees and shrubs; now is a good time to top it up.
- Start pruning shrubs and trees while they’re still dormant. Avoid pruning anything that has set buds, as you’ll be cutting off this year’s flowers!
- Inspect hardscapes for winter damage and make a note of what you’ll need to fix, paint, or have repaired as the weather improves.
- Get ready to apply pre-emergent herbicide; late April into early May is often an ideal application window.
- Get your lawnmower tuned up early so that it’s ready to go when you need it.
- Consider having an irrigation system installed soon while the soil is still soft.
Hooray for May, the most exciting month of your landscape maintenance checklist! Mid-month, the last frost should come and go, giving you the green-light for most planting and lawn care tasks.
- Garden centres will be bustling around May 15th, so plan your trip early in the month. Purchase your annuals (which sell out the fastest) and store them in a sunny spot indoors for a week or two if need be. It’s a good idea to start hardening them off by introducing them slowly to outdoor temperatures.
- Apply pre-emergent herbicide early in the month if you haven’t already.
- Plant trees and shrubs as soon as the ground is workable; you can usually start a few weeks before the last frost.
- Once the soil is firm and dry, it’s spring lawn care time! You can dethatch, aerate, apply topsoil and fertilizer, and overseed your lawn now.
- Plant perennials after the last frost date has passed, but keep some light fabric on hand in case you need to cover them.
- Around Victoria Day, plant your containers and hanging baskets. If you grow vegetables, this is also a good time to transplant them into your garden beds.
- Plant summer-blooming bulbs if you like.
- Pressure wash hardscapes to clear off any lingering grime from the springtime.
June brings a fair amount of landscape maintenance, but at least the weather will be beautiful while you’re at it!
- Re-paint, re-stain, and repair decks and fencing as needed.
- Start pulling weeds as soon as you notice them. (If you applied a pre-emergent herbicide, this should be a lot more manageable for you than usual!)
- Continue to plant annuals and perennials.
- As spring-flowering trees and shrubs finish flowering, begin to prune them. It’s best to prune them immediately after flowering, so they’re nicely shaped before they begin setting next year’s buds.
- Begin mowing the lawn as needed.
- Take note of any issues with your landscape that could merit a Warranty claim. Look for shifting or damage on new hardscapes or plant material that doesn’t appear to be coming out of dormancy. Keep in mind that, the first year after planting, it’s normal for most trees and shrubs to take a little extra time to get going in the spring. If you’re still concerned by mid-June, give us a call.
Plants are growing like crazy in July–whether you want them to or not!
- Be extra vigilant about weed control in July; this is when they’re most at risk of getting out of control before you know it.
- Keep on top of your lawn mowing!
- Don’t prune trees or shrubs unless it’s for safety reasons.
- Manage gardens as needed; pinch off spent flowers, harvest mature vegetables, and prune plants to keep a neat shape.
The dog days of summer should be spent preparing for the crisp days of fall!
- As the weather grows cooler, transition beds and container gardens to cool-season annuals like pansies and mums.
- Purchase fall fertilizers now before they’re sold out.
- Continue mowing the lawn as needed.
- Begin purchasing fall-planted bulbs in late August for the best selection.
Technically, fall doesn’t officially start until late in the month, but you’d never know it by the gorgeous colours exploding throughout the streets of Edmonton.
- Squeeze in a little extra patio time early in the month; these gorgeous days are fleeting!
- Start planting fall bulbs mid-month.
- Continue mowing the lawn as needed.
- Apply fall lawn fertilizer now. If you worry your lawn is a little compacted, consider aerating as well.
- Begin raking as leaves begin to fall; starting early will keep the work manageable.
- Prune summer-flowering shrubs after they’ve finished blooming.
Stay on top of your fall landscape maintenance checklist to prevent a scary amount of work from building up!
- Decorate for Halloween if it’s your thing! Make sure to pick up your pumpkins early as the nicest ones are quick to sell out from farms and garden centres.
- Early October is an excellent time for planting trees and shrubs. Consider planting evergreens to beautify your winter landscape.
- You still have time to plant perennials, if you like. It’s also a good time to divide older ones in your yard.
- Clip away spent foliage from this year’s perennials and remove spent annuals.
- Continue to rake leaves as needed.
- In late October, give your eavestroughs a good clean to remove fallen leaves before they turn to muck.
- Clean up beds to the best of your ability as your summer plants begin to die off.
- Prepare to give your lawn a final mow about a week before the first frost.
As we begin to say goodbye to balmy weather, we’re also saying goodbye to lengthy chore lists!
- Apply a generous layer of mulch to protect beds, trees, and shrubs.
- Apply an anti-desiccant spray to evergreens to protect them as the winds get dry and chilly.
- Clean and store patio furniture, grills, and other damage-prone fixtures.
- Ensure outdoor lighting is in good condition—the days are about to get real short, real fast!
Suddenly, Edmonton is a winter wonderland!