Hurricanes and strong weather are just a fact of life in Florida and preparing your lawn and yard for it is crucial for safety and damage reduction. Storms of recent years have been quick to form and seemingly more and more violent. With less time to prepare and harder hitting storms, it has never been more important to have a good working knowledge of storm prep for lawns. Proper storm prep can save you thousands of dollars in damages and minimize recovery time. Lawn prep for hurricanes boils down to the management of all aspects of your lawn and yard including the trees, grass, beds, bushes, flowers, and ornaments.
Winds are one of the primary dangers that need to be monitored closely and prepared for. The first thing you should do is to make sure there are no major loose objects anywhere on the property. This includes anything that isn’t rooted in the ground. Move loose items preferably into a garage or home since sheds tend to be vulnerable and less stable than your home. You’ll want to look out for things like potted plants, hanging feeders and ornaments, decorative baths and furniture, and even items like dog houses and playhouses. Sometimes the objects we see every day can blend into the landscape and we forget how un-secured some things are for their size. Be sure to check and double-check everything. It only takes a small stone to cause damage.
Now once you have everything secured and hidden away its time to make some changes to the flora around the yard. All of the living things in your yard will have a hard time dealing with extreme weather if not cared for properly. The grass should always be mowed and cut lower than normal. The shorter grass is easier to rake and see debris on. In addition to this, it might be a while before mowing the lawn becomes a priority. Make sure that all the limbs of trees around the property are trimmed back with all dead limbs removed. This is especially true for the trees around your home. Keep palms free of old fronds and seed banks, and make sure the lengthy pines don’t have any loose, thick limbs that need to be tied down. Flowers should be transplanted when possible. Bushes and shrubs also need to be trimmed down more than usual to prevent damage and surface area from catching the wind and potentially uprooting them.
Once all of your vegetation is trimmed, and your lawn mowed make sure to remove and dispose of the clippings and limbs in the proper areas. When mowing your lawn, it is best to bag your lawn clippings in preparation for a storm. Preparing your lawn for a hurricane is much different than preparing your home. That difference and knowing how to act on it can save you time, money and headache when dealing with hurricane damage after the storm is over.