Golden leaves, cozy sweaters, and the roaring cheer of football fans; autumn is knocking on our doors. But this isn't just any fall. The warmth of summer has stretched into our usual brisk evenings, setting the stage for a unique season. How do we make the most of it? Every year, all the home magazines, websites, and advice columns come out with their lists of must-do property prep for the coming winter – myself included.
Rather than rehash what I’ve already covered here, let’s talk about some unique elements that are making this year special. With the lingering warmth of summer chasing the early sunsets of fall, we have a unique blend of seasonal challenges and opportunities. With these nuances in mind, let's delve into some tips surrounding water usage, bug candles, outdoor décor, encounters with wildlife, and what’s most important this time of year.
Water is a very important element in landscaping and property maintenance. From hose spouts to in-ground sprinkler systems, there are many ways freezing conditions can cause damage to our homes. In years past, I’ve waited until we received that first frost warning to worry about freezing pipes. This year, I’m shutting off all but my most frequently used outdoor water sources ahead of time. Compared to this summer, it’s not quite as hot, sunny, or dry, so I can save myself stress later. Frozen pipes are a costly headache, so why not get ahead of the issue?
As the sun sets beyond the horizon a little earlier each evening yet the weather remains warm and enjoyable, I’ve been spending more time on the patio after dark than usual for this time of year. So are flying, stinging, biting things. In years past, the cooler weather would have made bug management a breeze. This year, between the relative warmth and drought conditions, plus all the wildfires that have been covered in national news, the traditional bug solution of fire pits is off the table. Instead, I’m relying on bug candles to light the way and keep bugs at bay.
As we bask in the unseasonable warmth and the great outdoors, it’s the perfect time to prepare for crisper weather and stronger storms. I’ve swapped the lightweight fabrics and fragile ornaments of summer décor for warm colors and rustic textures of natural elements. Decorating the outdoors with corn stalks, hay bales, and gourds is a double win: it fits the seasonal theme, and I won’t mind when nature reclaims a corn stalk or gourd.
Once again, the sun is sinking earlier and earlier each day. Autumn is just around the corner, and we will shortly slip back into nights that are longer than days. While our busy schedules are driven more by the clock than the sun, many animals will be adjusting their schedules with the changing light. Many more deer will be out there during rush hour, for example, and don’t be surprised if a nocturnal scavenger happens by while you’re still up and about. As we remain wary out there, let’s remember that we all live on this planet together.
With the return of autumn comes the return of football season. While we’ve been in full swing for a few weeks now, the best is yet to come. With so much to do to get the house ready for winter, and so many great community activities, finding the time to do everything can be challenging. Though it can be difficult, try to prioritize your own interests during this amazing season. For myself, I know that making it to the West Chester University home games, and maybe some local high school games, is a seasonal must, and plan my schedule accordingly. My tip here is to make sure you give yourself time to enjoy your favorite part of the season – before it’s too late!
This autumn, as we balance our favorite seasonal activities with the reality of warmer weather, we’re reminded that each season brings its own flavor of life. Just like trying to plan my busy schedule around the West Chester University’s home game schedule, this year is a blend of the familiar and the new. I’m still not sure when the best time to trim my hedges will be, but am already ahead of most of my outdoor clean up. How is your fall coming along?
Thank you for reading! I always try to provide you with something that’s close to me and interesting to you. If you have any other tips for preparing your property for the coming season, or have any must-do autumnal activities, please let me know! I’m always interested in chatting and would love to hear from you.