With summer drawing to a close, it's a good time to take care of a little work on your landscaping. Your lawn will reward you greatly if you'll spend a little time giving it some TLC. And some things are just best done as the weather turns cooler.

Fertilize your lawn. If you only fertilize once a year, the cusp of fall is the best time. It's also a great time to sew a new lawn with cool-season turf like perennial ryegrass, fescues and Kentucky Bluegrass. The North Carolina Cooperative Extension has some great guides to fall lawn care that covers everything from testing your soil to pest control.

If you have a garden, now's a good time to start planting for a fall harvest. Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, turnips, mustard and arugula all grow wonderfully in later summer and early fall. And they'll help prepare your soil for your spring gardening. We've still got several months of freeze-free days, but don't wait much or slower growing crops might not have enough time to mature.

Plant flowers now, specifically annuals like asters, mums and Japanese anemones. Keep them watered and prune dying flowers regularly. Take care of your roses now, and you'll see a more beautiful fall.  Remove all the dead stems and prune the rest back by about a third.  Add rose fertilizer and cover with clean mulch.  Only water if it hasn't rained in a week.

Remember that your lawn and landscaping is often the first thing potential buyers will see when they visit your home, so make sure that first impression is an excellent one.

This blog is maintained by Michael of Kim Hughes & Company.
Photo courtesy Rob Ireton/flickr.com