Mulching Your Garden with Fallen Leaves

It’s fall, and all the leaves are doing what they do this time of year!

So what’s the best way to celebrate this? Besides raking them all into a gigantic pile and flinging yourself into them, as my son loves to do? Well, once you’ve done that, don’t just throw them away. Use them as mulch!

Your trees are making free mulch for your use. You could rake it up, grind it up, and use it instead of having the trash haul it away. How about them apples?

So how do you do it?

Spread or Shred

You can use whole leaves or you can shred them. If you use whole leaves, you just spread them thinner so that water can still get through to the roots, but either way, leaves can help prevent weeds, encourage happy worms to make their homes there, and fluff up heavy soil.

After all, this is how wild forests mulch their beds, so why not?

Rake up your leaves, and then rake them into a long row about a foot wide. Then run a lawn mower over the leaves, back and forth, until they’re nicely shredded. Spread them in about a 1-inch layer around the roots of plants.

For the diehards, you can also compost with leaves, but as I’m not a super dedicated composter {we’ve only ever had small backyards}, I’ll leave that one to the experts.

Although I will say that my Vitamix Foodcycler is giving me a lot of composting confidence, and I can’t wait to share more about how it works when I’ve completed my initial experiments!

Please feel free to share tips if you have them!

About the ChefKristin

Career Army officer with a tendency toward workaholism. On the side, self taught cook, carpenter, and gardener, working to build a beautiful life for my family. Trying to tilt my balance in the right direction.

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