Although it may still be winter in Chicago, this doesn’t mean that it’s too soon to start making plans to prepare your lawn and garden for the upcoming spring in a month or two. After all, a beautiful garden doesn’t grow by itself – a fair amount of planning and work will be needed to have it looking the way you want. Here are some tips to help you get started.

1. Get Started with Cleaning Up

The first thing you’ll need to do before making any specific landscaping plans is get your lawn and garden bed cleaned up. Start by picking up larger branches and twigs and then raking up smaller bits of debris and leaves that have accumulated in garden beds and the rest of your yard during winter.

Debris that isn’t picked up and removed will not only get stuck in your mower; it will prevent fertilizers and other plant foods from being able to be thoroughly absorbed by your lawn and plants.

2. Don’t Dig or Walk on Wet Soil

Soil should never be worked when it’s wet because this will cause it to form extremely hard clumps over time – and this can take several seasons to rectify properly. Even if soil appears to have thawed at the top, chances are that it could still have a hidden layer of ice lower down.

The easiest way to determine if soil is dry enough to work is to take a handful and squeeze it. If it crumbles through your fingers easily, it can be worked safely. However, if it forms a solid lump after being squeezed, you’ll need to wait a few days before doing anything.

3. Sharpen those Mower Blades

Although several avid gardeners diligently service their mowers by changing the oil and sparkplugs annually, many forget to deal with one of the most important parts – the mower blade. A blunt mower blade will not only make cutting your lawn more difficult; it will tear your grass instead of cutting it cleanly. This can cause your lawn to turn brown and also result in the development of fungus over time.

Various hardware stores offer mower blade sharpening services, but it is possible to sharpen it yourself in some cases. If you intend performing this as a DIY project, be sure to remove your mowers sparkplug before taking the blade off.

4. Mulch is your Friend

Once your garden beds have been cleaned, it’s time to apply a layer of mulch. This will not only help protect delicate plant roots; it will help prevent weeds from springing up between your prized plants. If any weeds make an appearance, pull them up gently by hand to prevent any damage from being done to the plants you want to keep.

Getting the basic preparation work done in your yard now will help ensure that you can go ahead with those landscaping plans you’ve been thinking about during winter. If you would like to enlist the help of professional landscapers in the Chicago area, contact us today to schedule an appointment with our team.