Grasp Gardeners: Slipping Leaves: To rake or not? – Orange Leader

By John Green

Orange County Grasp Gardener


Good day fellow gardeners and Merry Christmas!  Nowadays I’m standing at the kitchen area sink and beside me sits a steaming cup of espresso, as I peer outside the house the window mesmerized, once again witness to a different dreary, moist overcast day.   You see I’m pondering this week’s gardening posting.  Through the kitchen area window I’m seeing an abundance of leaves free-tumble, quickly whisked absent at breakneck pace by an invisible pressure, pushed without lead to to the yard’s perimeter. Mounds of crisp and damp, multicolored dunes carelessly undulating with each passing breath of wintertime.  One particular of my four, four-legged companions decide on this second to bark, a passing squirrel probably?  At this second I’m pulled back into fact.  Slipping leaves, this is a good matter.  Deciduous trees lose their leaves in the tumble/winter.  This is a survival mechanism, likely dormant which lets the tree to conserve strength and water.  This 7 days I’m writing about two universities of imagined to rake leaves or not?

Why Benefit from Fallen Leaves:

Getting rid of fallen leaves from the base of the tree canopy exactly where they normally mound may inhibit quite a few microorganisms, insects, and little animals which are effective to the environment.  Raking, taking away, and composting leaves may possibly wipe out the habitat of numerous tiny animals which involve the go over of the leaves in the winter season.  Working with character and the ecosystem, you are getting a steward of the land even though also enhancing the lawn. Making it possible for the leaves to keep on being in spot will provide a healthier valuable insect and animal populace in the spring.

Beneath is listing of a couple of of the advantageous animals which removing leaves could displace:

  • Frogs, Toads, Newts, Salamanders, and other amphibians
  • Snails and Slugs
  • Crickets, Beetles, Millipedes, Centipedes, and other bugs
  • Subject Mice
  • Box Turtles
  • Snakes
  • Spiders and other arachnids
  • Moths and butterfly pupae
  • Worms and other soil aerators
  • Micro organism and Soil-enhancing microorganisms
  • fungi and as effectively as necessary healthful microbes

Wholesome insect populations need leaf litter in winter season.  These insect populations also feed birds and predatory insects. Allowing leaves to winter season in position will form pure fertilizer enhancing your soil about time, although suppressing weeds so saving you energy and the value of bagging.

What to do alternatively of discarding fallen leaves:

  • Place raked leaves on the perimeter of the lawn
  • Rake leaves and place them more than backyard beds as mulch or protection
  • Use a mower with a mulching blade to make leaves more compact items
  • Position raked leaves all over foundation of shrubs and trees

Getting rid of fallen leaves:

There is a very good explanation at the rear of raking leaves, and it has to do with lawn health and fitness as perfectly as aesthetics, a tidy-wanting garden. Some of you may possibly have heard the pursuing warnings about enabling leaves to remain on major of your garden:

  • The garden will be smothered if a thick layer of leaves is still left on leading of it
  • A leaf layer will invite pests, disorder, or other really serious situation like brown patch.
  • A leaf layer sorts a barrier blocking water, nutrients, and air move from getting to the root program of your lawn
  • Damp leaves variety a mat, which can maintain new grass blades from emerging in spring.

Really do not use your rake, use your garden mower on the mulch placing. You’ve likely currently been executing some mulching mowing considering the fact that slide but if you have not then go ahead and start now with your blades set substantial to lightly mulch the leaves. Then in a pair of weeks, reduce the blades some and mulch yet again. As you are executing this you are delivering foodstuff for all those tiny animals that I shown over. Please do not use a blower! You stop up blowing leaves and the compact animals away which robs the soil of nature’s finest source – abundant, normal compost from decomposing leaf litter.

Too Rake or Not? Rake for aesthetics and make use of the raked leaves in spots all around trees and shrubs as nicely as vegetable and flower gardens. We should be mulch mowing leaves from our lawns and permitting them go appropriate back into the grass and soil for the tiny animals to choose benefit of.

For more information and facts or to have your gardening concerns answered you should speak to us:

Orange County TX Learn Gardeners

Web site:

Facebook: Orange County Texas Grasp Gardeners Affiliation.

Orange County Grasp Gardner Helpline: (409) 882-7010



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