Fall is for football, sweaters, pumpkins, cider — and planting.
If you think spring is the best time of year to put plants in the ground, well, fall is offended.
Don't be fooled by the chill in the air. The ground is plenty warm enough for plants.
“Fall is optimal to plant just about anything,” says Scott Rupert, account manager at Level Green Landscaping.
Here’s a look at the benefits of fall planting:
The soil is actually warmer now, in the fall, than in the spring.
“The soil temperature is still high enough — in the mid 50s — that roots can get a good hold and get the nutrients they need,” Rupert says. “Even though the tops of the plants are getting ready to go to sleep, the roots are able to get set up to get through the winter, and the plants will come up in spring blazing.”
One of the best benefits of fall planting: the cool, rainy days of fall offer free water for your newly planted beauties.
They’d never admit it, but it’s a bit stressful for trees and shrubs to be moved from their pots or balls of burlap into the ground.
The heat of summer just makes it worse, so fall’s cool air provides a nice buffer for them.
Roots, Roots, Roots
When it comes to a plant’s health, it’s all about the roots.
Fall planting gives a plant, tree or shrub plenty of time to develop its root system before the ground freezes.
Then, winter provides a nice time of rest before spring coxes them back to life, ready for a new season of growth.
Grass Loves Fall
Didn’t get around to installing sod last spring or summer? It’s not too late. In fact, now is ideal.
“The temperatures now aren't stressing it, so it can absorb the ample amount of water that it really needs,” Rupert says.
Fall’s cool temperatures and still-warm soil are great for grass seed to settle in, too.
Pansies And Violas — Double Duty
Plant cheerful yellow and purple pansies and violas in the fall and you get a fresh burst of color that will last right through winter and into spring.
These beauties look delicate, but they're sturdy and resist frost’s icy fingers.
“They’ve already been in the ground, developing their root system,” Rupert says, “so while they might look a little rough by January and February, by spring they’ll come on real strong again, nicely filling out.”
It’s Time For Bulbs
You won’t see the benefits for months, but now is the time to plant tulip, daffodil and crocus bulbs for a dazzling display of color come spring.
If you have to pick one type, go for daffodils, Rupert recommends. They typically come back with a cheerful show for a few seasons.
A Word About Water
Even though the sun doesn't beat down the way it does in the summer, your newly planted friends still need plenty of water until the ground freezes.
Trust Your Fall Planting To Level Green
At Level Green Landscaping, we know there are lots of benefits of fall planting, so we’re busy throughout the season, getting grass, perennials, trees and shrubs safely tucked into the ground during this ideal planting weather.
If you’re not already a Level Green Landscaping client, we’d love to add you to our growing list of happy customers. Our focus is on commercial properties like offices, mixed-use sites, HOAs, municipalities and institutions in Maryland, Washington DC and parts of Virginia.
Contact us at 202-544-0968. You can also request a free consultation online to meet with us one-on-one.
We’d love to hear from you.