The leaves on the bottom are the clearest signal that we’re approaching chilly climate and the top of the outside rising season. There are nonetheless raspberries to be gathered, apples to ripen and maybe a few extra weeks for potatoes and Brussels sprouts to develop and sweeten, however it’s essential to harvest the remainder of your gardens and doubtless ought to do it now. And it’s time to clear up.
Let’s begin with these leaves. I’ve some nice information. Issues have modified. Typical knowledge used to insist on raking up each single one lest they someway kill grass beneath. I’m right here to inform you that, lastly, specialists have come to the conclusion that such “knowledge” was not clever. Leaves are nature’s means of obeying the regulation of return. It’s the method crops return the vitamins they used to develop to the soil. That approach, the expertise might be repeated the next yr. Take away these leaves out of your yard by raking up leaves and you’re successfully ravenous your crops.
So, with out query, leaving leaves is the best way to go. No raking wanted! And right here you could have two decisions. Once we first began this follow, the recommendation was to run the leaves over with a mower earlier than you set it away for the season. Mulching up these leaves makes them extra accessible to bacterial decay. This, in flip, ought to make them disappear quicker.
Nevertheless, the extra I experiment, the extra satisfied I’m that you do not even should mulch with the mower. Winds in the course of the fall and winter unfold leaves out. Beneath the timber, the place the leaf layer can actually get thick, is an space that ought to be coated with mulch always, anyhow. Second, if we get any snow cowl in any respect, there shall be a zone slightly below it the place warmth is trapped and the temperatures permit for decay all winter lengthy. By spring, most leaves are gone. These that aren’t can both be mulched then or, should you actually should, be raked up. The underside line: Your garden will not die. Actually.
Do collect some leaves in your compost pile and to make use of as mulch in your perennials beds and beneath shrubs. (Annual and vegetable gardens favor a inexperienced mulch resembling grass clippings or straw for the winter.) Save a number of luggage of leaves for subsequent spring’s mulching. You can find luggage and luggage to gather out of your neighbors each now and within the spring.
And, talking of typical knowledge, it has lastly caught up with the no-until motion. Don’t rototill your backyard this fall regardless of your conventional follow or your perception that it helps to mulch in natural…