Winter is coming: Prepare your home and garden for the colder months | Homes

Shaniqua Juliano

There is a chill in the air! Autumn is here, and winter is on its way. As we enter this new season, folks are beginning or continuing home and garden improvement projects. 

“Business has been pretty busy in recent weeks,” said Bill Newman, president of Oxford Lumber. “We saw a huge surge when Gov. Ivey issued the Stay at Home order. Consumers were doing lots of home projects like decks, painting, lawn and garden, and other projects around their homes,” Newman said.

“Building is fairly strong right now, so we are busy even though most people have gone back to work. There is still a lot of homebuilding, remodeling and commercial projects, and homeowners are steady but not quite as frantic as during March and April.”

Fall home improvement projects typically involve preparing your home for winter. They can range from cleaning and resealing your deck, to checking your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms, to checking your heating and air conditioning units, to handling pest control. 

This is also a good time of year to inspect and clean roofs and fireplaces.

Oxford Lumber typically sees a lot of interest in replacement windows and doors and attic insulation in preparation for the winter.   


Readying the yard for winter

People are also sprucing up their yards. 

“Many people are getting the grills they want and making their decks and yards more appealing, or maybe building an arbor or gazebo,” explained Newman. “We are selling lots of grills, plants, treated lumber for decks, paint and Stihl power equipment, as well as maintenance items.

“People are working outside in flower beds, cleaning, repairing and winterizing.” 

Even though the temperature is beginning to drop, the sun can still do damage, so wide-brimmed hats are recommended to combat harmful rays when you work in the yard. 

Stooping, bending and kneeling are all part of gardening aerobics, and kneepads or a kneeler can be a gardener’s best friend to cut back on damage to knees. Several companies produce a combination kneeler-stool with an attachment to hold a few of your gardening tools. 

Pine Tree Tools sells a line of bamboo gardening gloves that are “touchscreen-friendly,” meaning you can answer your phone or skip to the next song in your playlist without having to remove a glove. 

Oxford Lumber currently is seeing a boost in sales of herbicides, fertilizers and soils, as well as mums. Landscape blocks, rocks, yard decorations and birdseed are selling, too.

“I see people investing more in their homes because they are spending more time there in order to stay safe. This pandemic has created more do-it-yourself-ers because it is more of a priority,” Newman said.

Faith Dorn is a freelance writer in Anniston. Contact her at [email protected]

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