Have you mulched your leaves yet? After spending years raking up those fall leaves, I got pretty tired of having a second set of leaves fall from the Oak trees. I decided to make short work of the job by using my mulch mower and ran the mower over the leaves, which mulched them all and enriched my lawn happily at the same time. The lawn may not be as neat and tidy, but it sure will be happy having all that extra fertilizer on it, and it will be even happier next spring, and so too will you! Go mulch those leaves!
Source: Gardeners around the globe
By Kghornsten from Davis, CA
We also make a pile in the back of the yard and let it turn into mulch (by the next summer, takes a while to decompose). Great way to save on the mulch bill!
I have a large maple in the front yard. I used to mulch the leaves but too much mulch killed the grass. Took several years to recover.
You can give back most of the nutrients your trees and plants used, with mulch from or close to the same place the leaves and other plants got it from. Same with small woody branches. Chop them up best you can and put near the plants.
Decomposition can sometimes be speeded up with natural bacterias. Look in your favorite gardening store for organic methods. Compost piles are wonderful. Recycle the life, then you won't need fertilizers which can be poison to the water nearest and farthest from you. Diseased plants should be treated differently, no poisons please. Treat the earth gently, you are given everything you need to survive from this planet.
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Save your back, save time, and make leaf and debris cleanup much easier! Simply sharpen your lawnmower blades and then start mowing over the leaves. Don't use the bagger. You won't need it. Mulching mower or not, your mower will chop up the leaves with just a few passes and there will be virtually nothing large enough to clean up.
The result is leaf mulch on your lawn which will disappear over the winter, is good for the soil and you don't have to clean up any leaves. This won't hurt your mower at all. Use a blower to clear your patio, driveway, and sidewalks before you start. Blow everything onto your lawn and then make it disappear.
Source: my landscaping experience
By jim from Chagrin Falls, OH
With winter fast approaching, we need to concentrate on protecting our treasured flower gardens. In a pinch, if I don't have adequate mulch to use on every flower bed, I have my son rake the leaves that fell during fall into a big pile. I take most of my hanging pots and place them in bare spots in the flower beds. I then pile the leaves onto the bed, completely covering everything.
I have done this for the last 3 years and it works very well. When the last frost has come, I then carefully remove any loose leaves and use the rest for natural mulch. It's not the most attractive way to protect your flowers but definitely the most inexpensive. I have annuals that return every year due to this primitive mulching method, with great success too.
By Cindy from Alabama
I just came in from raking leaves in my back yard. Our village sends out vacuum trucks every fall to pick up leaves raked to the curb, but I wouldn't dream of giving away my precious leaves. They're much too valuable as mulch over the winter. And maybe they're not beautiful to others, but they're beautiful to me, especially in the spring when all my perennials come back. (Annuals won't make it through a Wisconsin winter.) (11/10/2007)