It’s June and the start of the 2021 hurricane season. If you live as close to the coast as I do, hurricanes are just another aspect of long, hot and humid summers.
It’s important to note that while hurricanes usually come with a lot of notice, some storms can form quickly off the coast, which has happened several times in the past year. For 2021, NOAA has forecast an active hurricane season in the Atlantic. Now is an excellent time to start preparing your yard for an upcoming storm.
Proper storm preparation can save your family thousands of dollars in landscaping and structural damage. Most of us in the Houston area are still spending money to replace our landscapes from hyperactive winter storms this year, so I highly recommend completing these 12 steps to save your trees, grass, flowers, vegetables, shrubs, and ornaments.
12 tips for preparing your property for hurricane season
1 – This is a great time to prune your trees and shrubs by a professional tree service or if you have a family member who loves chain saws and logging and won’t injure your trees, recruit them. I have two fairly large oak trees in my front yard, which I recently pruned last week. You’re too late. If a category 2 or 3 storm had hit, I would have done massive damage to my roof and maybe some windows.
2- Check all your trees for any rotting branches or roots, then cut off any branches that are dead or could fall off in high winds. When pruning trees, be sure to maintain large, healthy branches.
3 – If you have dead trees, remove them immediately. The snowy apocalypse left many of us in Texas with dead trees. If your tree becomes unhealthy, there is a high probability that it will fall during a storm. I met a woman this week who didn’t hire a professional to prune her tree, and her tree had a cut wound. He’s dead now. It will have to remove it before the Atlantic Ocean becomes active.
4 – If you have planted new trees, consider putting them on the ground before a storm hits the beach. Old trees have established roots, but new trees do not have roots strong enough to keep them in the ground. When nesting, it is important to keep the tie loose enough so that the tree can move with the wind. If it is too loose, the rope will loosen, and you will likely lose your new tree.
5- Bring all potted plants into your home, shed or garage. Since wind is one of the primary risks that comes with a tornado, you want anything loose that can become tossed away. Also, any plants that are small or delicate that can lose their leaves should be brought in as well.
6 – If you have tall pots and nowhere to store them inside your house, garage or shed, put them on their sides.
7 – If you have a trellis, you need to install it on the ground because it can easily blow off during high winds.
8 – If you have a vegetable garden or fruit trees, pick the fruits before the storm. You will likely lose what remains.
9- Turn off your irrigation system. There will be enough rain, and the water system may be damaged in a storm.
10- Now is an excellent time to clean the rain gutters. I did this last week and found sunflowers growing on one tree and a few trees. You want to remove any debris near the roof of your home. Another thing to look for is the health of the gutters. Verify that it is still attached to your home. If you find one loose, re-secure it.
11- Remove all tools, furniture, and patio decorations from your garden before a storm strikes, and put them inside your garage or shed. When I was a kid, my dad would take my sisters and I walk in a grid pattern in the back and front yards looking for any loose little things that could get projected. It only takes one small ingredient to cause damage during a tornado. Don’t forget to move the litter boxes to your garage. There is nothing worse than looking out your window and seeing your trash can.
12 – Once everything is secured, mow your lawn and make sure to cut it to a lower level than you normally would. When the grass is shorter, it is easier for you to see debris and collect leaves when the storm passes.
While hurricanes can be stressful for homeowners in the path of a hurricane, knowing how to prepare before the storm can save you valuable time and money after the storm. I hope this list helps you prepare for hurricane season.
This article was originally published on Ready feeding™ on June 24, 2021