From green to rich reds to golden yellow, the gradual poetic-like fall of leaves to the ground and calming rustling sound can be a welcome change in the garden during autumn.
While a few leaves won't cause any problems, hazardous, slippery wet leaves and subsequent blocked drains and gutters can be a nuisance and cause a real headache.
But did you know that there are many ways that you can actually put your leaves to good use? Have a look at how you can repurpose leaves.
1. Help your lawn
When leaves fall onto your lawn, set your rotary lawnmower on its highest cutting height and mower over them. This will shred the leaves into small pieces enabling them to break down into the lawn. This makes a great soil conditioner and helps the soil to retain moisture and remain healthy throughout the winter.
2. Make Compost
Fallen autumn leaves are a great source of brown material for your compost bin. By ensuring they are moist but not wet, mixed with green material and turned once a month to allow oxygen to circulate, they will eventually break down into a thick black compost – rocket fuel for your plants, flowers and lawn.
3. Leaf Mulch
If you have a large number of fallen leaves, then using them as mulch is a great alternative to throwing them away. First collect them and shred them using a rotary mower (try the Flymo Chevron 34C lawnmower). Once you have shredded the leaves, place them around your plants and flower beds – two or three inches thick avoiding the stem.
Leaf mulch has a number of great benefits, not only does it break down into a great soil conditioner, but it will act as insulation for plants and vegetables, and also protect useful animals like worms from prey. It also acts a useful weed barrier helping to stop them from growing.
4. Bag Them
During the spring and summer months, it can be difficult to find sufficient brown material for your compost bin. By storing them in bags (try this garden composter from Amazon) in a cool dry place, it allows you a rich source of brown material for the following year.
Collect as many leaves as you can, dry them out and bag them up. Pack as many as you can tightly together and store them in cold areas of your home including the garden shed. These bags of leaves will act like insulation helping to keep the space warm during winter.