Right now, we are in what is called “hurricane season.” This is when unique atmospheric drifts get picked up in the atmosphere – as it crosses through warm weather, the storm system starts to become incredibly active. When it finally touches down, the devastation can be catastrophic. Hurricanes mostly occur in the Atlantic region of the United States – namely in Florida – but they can also occur in the Gulf of Mexico. As a homeowner, it is imperative that you take measures to prepare your yard for these hurricanes – otherwise trees can be uprooted and lawn furniture can damage your home. Here are five hurricane preparedness tips for your yard.
- Remove dead trees. Before hurricane season, you want to make sure that you remove all dead trees from your yard. During a large and destructive hurricane, dead trees can actually become dislodged – they can either fall on your property or they can be picked up by the wind and thrown a great distance. Ideally, you want to hire a professional for tree removal - you don’t want to hurt yourself in the process.
- Lock down lawn furniture. If you have light outdoor furniture, you want to make sure that it is tethered to the ground. Anything that is not anchored can be picked up from the wind. Not only will a hurricane cause damage to the furniture, but the furniture can also damage your home. One of the best ways to lock down lawn furniture is to place them firmly in the soil.
- Plant flora that is tolerant to salt damage. Most hurricanes contain high winds full of salt water. This is often no match for some plants. If you were to visit the tropics – particularly near the beach – you would notice how hardy most of the plants are. This is so they can stand up to the harshness of the salty winds. If you live in a hurricane zone, you may want to think of planting these hardy salt-resistant plants, because you don’t want to re-landscape every time there is a big storm.
- Don’t use rocks or gravel for ornamentation. In a hurricane, rocks and gravel can turn into projectiles that will cause an insurmountable amount of damage. In a category 3 or 4 hurricane, these rocks and stones can break car windows – in a category five hurricane, gravel can be like flying bullets. If you want to incorporate stone into your landscaping plans, you want to make sure they are very heavy boulder-like stones that can’t be tossed around in a storm.
- Provide adequate drainage. It is also important to have a great drainage system in your backyard. Hurricanes can come with torrential rain, which can result in flooding. The last thing you want is for flooding to damage your plants. When it comes down to it, building a drainage system will be easy – all you need is a few key drainage holes and then an area where the water can be flushed. The next time there is a big hurricane, you will be glad you built a drainage system.