It’s an odd thing to observe as a landscaper. Those who appear to love their lawns the most tend to rob their lawns of one of its greatest benefits: leaves.
Shredding your leaves with a mulcher or a lawn mower, if done frequently enough for the amount of foliage dropping to your lawn, doesn’t have to be an unappealing site. If you shred the leaves while there are still some spikes of grass showing through, the resulting mulch should settle down among the grass in such a way that it will be hardly noticed, and you can keep that great looking lawn. Even better – after a few year of mulching the leave in your lawn, you’ll find that dandelions and crabgrass have moved on to bother your neighbors instead, making you even more the envy of your neighborhood.
Aside from the nutrient rich and soil warming benefits of mulching your leaves, you may find that your cold weather aches and pains are diminished. Let’s be honest – raking leaves every other day doesn’t do much to sooth the pains associated with colder weather.
Whether you choose to leave your leaves on the lawn and mulch them with your mower or equipment sold specifically for that purpose, we highly recommend using shredded leaves in your gardens and compost piles. Shredding leaves into small pieces helps them to decompose faster, leaving more surface area for microbes. It also prevents the leaves from packing into thick layers that might run water away from your plants, or worse, prevent air from penetrating the soil.
You may find that some of the mulch does not break down by spring. If that’s the case, simply remove those pieces from your garden to allow for tender plants to emerge through – or simply leave them there to keep weeds down throughout the growing season.
It’s the natural cycle of the planet to drop leaves before winter. Sacrificing these benefits for a slightly greener yard at the end of the growing season simply doesn’t make any sense – so remember leave your leaves this Autumn and give your soil the nutrients and winter protection it deserves.