By Kathy Ray
Fall. Just that one word can conjure up many different emotions in each of us. I, for one, immediately envision the beauty of the season and all the senses it triggers; the color of the leaves, the smell of outdoor firepits, cool crisp mornings and orange pumpkins against the bluest of skies. However, I know the word can be polarizing. I have found the fall season to be a love/hate relationship for most people. Why? Because so many hear the word fall and associate what follows – winter! But, before I digress into my love of fall and winter, let’s back up and talk about your spring and summer seasons.
Like many, you probably spent the winter dreaming of warm temps so you and your family and friends could enjoy the outdoors. Maybe you even thought about how this was the year you were going to freshen up your landscape, care for your lawn so it would be the envy of your neighbors, and add a relaxing water feature to sit near and sip frosty drinks on hot summer nights. Now, here we are talking fall and those things didn’t get done. Well, it’s not too late. The fall season is one of the best times to take stock of your home’s lawn and landscaping.
Let’s look at that list again. If what you most want is to freshen up your landscape, perfect. Most plants get pruned in the fall, weeds can be tamed with a fresh coat of mulch applied to help reduce the amount of work in the spring, and the cooler evening temperatures are ideal to plant new shrubs and bushes. This is also when you want to consider adding spring-flowering bulbs to your landscape beds.
Next on the list was lawncare. So, your plan was to get on a regular schedule of treating your lawn. Okay, we can’t do that this time of year, but one of the most beneficial lawn treatments is the final one administered late into the fall. This treatment provides nutrients that lay dormant on your lawn all winter and give it an added boost in the spring.
And last, but certainly not least, you thought about adding a water feature to your landscape. Excellent, because now is the time to do that. You are probably thinking, why would I bother doing that when it is just going to get cold and I won’t get to enjoy it? Good question. Depending on the type of water feature you choose, most can, and should, have some type of bubbler or aeration system running in them for the winter. This is necessary if you have fish. I feel one of the reasons so many dislike the winter months, is the lack visual interest. By keeping water moving in your water feature, the ice will provide that much needed visual interest and not put stress on a pump trying to run a waterfall.
This brings us to the location and type of water feature you’ve been thinking about. First, let’s talk location. When deciding on an area to put a water feature in your yard, consider what your goals are. Do you want plants and fish? Do you envision a pond under your favorite tree in the backyard? Then you want to discuss these pros and cons with your installer. Aquatic plants play an important role in the ecosystem of your pond and shouldn’t be overlooked when making installation decisions.
Are you mostly thinking of the relaxing sound of water flowing over the rocks? Do you want a waterfall, a pond, or basalt fountains? Maybe the perfect choice for you is only a waterfall, which is known as a pondless waterfall, or you may prefer basalt fountains. Also consider the lay of the land. This is where a reputable company with expertise in installation, repair and maintenance of ponds is important. Bring to the discussion how loud you want the flow of water. That may sound silly, but to some loud, flowing water can become annoying, not soothing, as it should. Pondless waterfalls have become very popular the last several years due to the fact that they usually require less maintenance and you do not have to deal with fish and plant care with a pondless waterfall.
Besides giving you additional beauty during our dark, Ohio winter, if you have your water feature installed in the fall, you will most likely save money on the installation. Many companies are winding down their landscape services and offer specials during the fall months to entice customers. This time of the year installation also allows you the opportunity to tweak the details and be ahead of the game before spring arrives. Even the best of experts providing your installation may experience rocks that need adjusted or mechanical malfunctions that will need corrected.
Another good reason to consider using this season to your advantage is the fact that most companies are overwhelmed in the spring. Ohio usually provides us with beautiful fall days offering ideal working conditions, and our spring seems to give us rain. No wait, it gives us RAIN!!! The rain and mud can wreak havoc while trying to complete a pond installation. When choosing a company to provide a fall installation of a water feature, ask if they include coming back in the spring and getting your new pond up and running. By receiving this spring service in addition to the installation, you are getting your name moved to the top of the list for spring.
So, this year, don’t just change your landscape, change your mindset. Look forward to realizing your dreams for your outdoors, by making a list and checking it twice before you choose a pond installer and then settle in for a long, winter’s nap.
For information about ponds, water gardens, lakes and lawns, visit the website for Pond Wiser, Incorporated, at www.pondwiser.com or contact them at 330-833-3764.
Ponds In Your Backyard