Lawn Maintenance for Texas Winters

Lawn Maintenance for Texas Winters

by PJ Kratohvil
of Complete Solutions

Grass growth is starting to slow down, temperatures and leaves are starting fall. It must be November in Texas. As we’re preparing to deal with the cooler temps, there are many things to start thinking about in preparation of your landscaped spaces.

There is too much going on this time of year to let these things stress you out. We’ve put together a short list of common questions and answers to ensure you’re prepared for whatever this winter has in store.

Can I just cut the sprinklers back or do I need to shut them off completely and winterize my system?

Reduce watering back to once or twice per week and shorten the runtime per zone. This will not only be adequate for your planting but should also save you a little on the monthly irrigation budget. If our temperatures are going to get below freezing it’s a good idea to turn your controller to the off position, close and wrap valves, and drain water from any lines not deeper than 12 inches. Freezing temperatures can cause water/ice to expand, eventually breaking your pipes and leading to costly repairs. If you’re familiar enough with your system to go ahead and prep for winter than do so. If not, sometimes it’s a good idea to call an a irrigation professional to ensure things are done properly.

What can I plant that will put some color in my beds without dying after the first freeze?

Winter isn’t time to ignore your landscape, in fact both rooted and bare rooted plants do well when newly planted in the winter. It’s a good idea to get your larger plantings (30-100gal) in the ground so they can start to establish themselves before spring rolls around so that they are not affected by the early heat. It’s also a good rule of thumb to ensure you have at least 2 inches of mulch in your beds to help regulate soil temperatures and keep things as consistent as possible through the up-and-down roller coaster of a Texas winter. Winter is a good time to assess your landscaping, figure out where the blah areas are and consider your options. Cedar trellises, stone seating areas, pots and all type of rock accents are good ways to get creative within your bed spaces giving it that final finishing touch. Sometimes the greatest focal points of your landscape are not plants at all but rather the hardscapes they are supporting.

Which one of these trees can I go ahead and cut back and how much can I take off without causing damage?

As long as temperatures remain above 32°F, winter is a great time to prune most all of your trees, shrubs and roses. Getting things cut back now will reduce on overgrowth too early in the spring and help keep your bed space more organized throughout the growing season.

Hope this helps with getting your property ready for the winter months. As always, we appreciate all the support and we hope you’re able get outside and enjoy some fresh air.

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