Save Money with Fall Gardening
Ask most gardeners and they’ll tell you fall is just about the best time of year for all sorts of garden activities, including planting and getting beds ready for spring. But did you know that fall is also the best time to save a bundle on plants and equipment? And that there are other things you can do in fall to save money on your garden all year? Check out the tips below and you’ll be gardening – and saving cash – well into the season.
Get Great Deals on Nursery Stock
In most areas of the country, fall is the best time of year to plant or transplant trees, shrubs and many other types of plants. In the fall the soil retains warmth from the the long summer season which helps plants establish their root systems before energy is needed for growth in the spring. Many garden centers and nurseries slash prices on container-grown plants this time of year in order to avoid overwintering them and to make room for upcoming seasonal items like Halloween pumpkins and Christmas trees. You might even test out those negotiating skills by asking for additional price cuts on reduced items; many nurseries will oblige to get old stock out the door.
Best Prices on Garden Equipment
Fall is the best time of year to score deals on all types of garden tools, equipment and supplies. If you’re in the market for used equipment such as lawn mowers and weed trimmers this is also the best time to find deals. Check out yard sales, flea markets and thrift stores at the end of the season for the best prices. If you need big equipment like a tractor, try calling local landscaping companies to see if they are selling off any used equipment now that their busy season is over.
Maintain Tools and Tune-Up Equipment
Spend a little time this fall to give your garden tools and equipment some TLC. Use aluminum foil as a scrub pad to remove dirt and rust from shovels and other metal gardening tools. It can also be used to sharpen gardening sheers and pruners by simply cutting through it a few times. Use motor oil to lubricate all metal surfaces, and tie bags with some used charcoal around the metal ends of gardening tools to prevent rust. Mowers and other gas powered equipment should be cleaned and filters and oil changed. Fill gas tanks and treat with a stabilizer to keep gas fresh and prevent condensation in the engine. You’ll save money in the long run by keeping your tools and equipment in top shape.
Make a Compost Pile
Fall is the best time to start a compost pile, as you can toss leaves and other yard debris in it. To build, you can simply stake a hoop of three foot high chicken wire or other mesh that allows for circulation. After a few months, you’ll have a wealth of material to use as mulch or soil amendment that cost your virtually nothing to make.
Divide Perennials and Other Plants
Many perennial plants can be divided in the fall. Dividing makes the plant healthier and creates many plants out of a single one. Generally, the plants should be thoroughly watered first and then dug out with the root ball intact. Separate the root ball with a sharp tool or pitch fork, and replant all the divisions. The only thing you’ll spend for all these new plants is time!
As you can see, fall is the best time to save money getting your garden in great shape, so get out there now to reap the rewards all year long!