It’s that time of year again when despite all of our clearing up our gardens seem to be inundated with leaves, and it can be difficult to know what to do with them. So put together some suggestions that will not only help you to dispose of them but also put them to good use.
• Compost them – many gardeners would argue that you need to have a separate compost bin for food waste and leaves but if you have shred your leaves then there is no reason why you cannot compost them together, just make sure you aerate them frequently so that they compost down with the other compostable matter.
• Create Mulch – The best way to create mulch is to shred your leaves and store them in black bin liners, piercing the bag to create holes, then leave for a year before using them. As dry leaves will just blow away and it’s essential that leaves are wet for them to decompose.
Then next autumn or spring add the mulch to your flower beds, making sure that you avoid touching the stems or roots of the plants, and this will help to protect the roots, prevent weeds and all the nutrients will enter into the soil.
• Mow them into your grass– just leave the leaves on your grass and mow – if you can find a dry day, then simply run over them then they will break down over winter, giving food throughout the winter, and shade which will help to prevent weeds from growing.
• Compost heap – in spring you will be trying to dry out your compost heap by adding bits of newspaper to it, so why not save some of your brown material by storing your leaves in a dry place in a garage or shed for winter and then mix it with your green composting in spring.
Finally watch for hedgehogs who love to nest in piles of leaves.