A beautiful garden is a lot of fun and joy, but in some seasons it is also more work than one would like. Even if real garden friends like almost every garden work, there are also activities that are certainly not so pleasant.
This usually includes disposing of the fallen fruit and collecting the leaves, which fall mainly from the fall of numerous deciduous trees and spread on beds, between stones, on the terrace, under bushes and on the lawn. Sweeping up and foliage disposal is the order of the day, but what to do if the foliage really takes over? What to do with all the autumn leaves?
We have put together a few tips and useful garden information for you, what you can do with the leaves and how best to dispose of it.
Collect leaves and dispose of them
No matter what you plan to do with the leaves, everything starts with picking up the whole leaves. There are many ways and strategies for doing this, but all are only of limited use depending on where the leaf remnants are. If you only want to do this once, wait until the last leaf has fallen from the house trees and then collect.
The following methods have proven their worth:
Raking together with the rake and filling it into a leaf sack
Handwork is the most fun isn’t it? Get a large and sturdy leaf rake and generously bill the lawns. Pile of leaves every 3 meters have proven their worth. With the leaf sack, they go from bunch to bunch and bag.
Drive over with the lawnmower
Is there still a final autumn cut of the lawn due for lawn care ? Then use the opportunity and collect the leaves with the lawnmower. The advantage here is that larger leaves are also shredded and, depending on the type of leaves, can also be good for the compost.
Leaf blowers and leaf blowers
Not particularly popular because loud and insect-killing are leaf blowers and leaf blowers. Such a device can be very useful, especially for stone beds, because a rake is not very helpful here to free the gravel bed from leaf remnants.
paths, entrances and driveways can be cleared of all leaves with a leaf broom.
Once collected, the autumn leaves can be used for their intended purpose.
The easiest is the transport to the green cutting yard. To do this, the foliage must either be brought in yourself or placed on the street at irregular intervals.
Compost and recycle autumn leaves
Foliage compost can in principle always be used, but a distinction must be made as to which foliage is placed on the composter . Basically, small and especially chopped quantities are placed in an already filled compost heap at any time. Using foliage as fertilizer is obvious, you just have to know how.
Larger quantities, however, can regularly lead to problems because they can become mushy, rotten or contain so much tannins (oak leaves, walnut leaves) that they do not rot, or only very slowly. Throwing too much of a good thing on the compost heap slows down the entire rotting process of the whole heap. Of course, this is not expedient.
Compost birch leaves
The small birch leaves are valuable additions to any compost heap. They have a high lime content and can also be used as special compost, which can later be applied to beds. These leaves can also be useful as a mixture with acidic compost doses.
The fallen leaves of the walnut decompose very poorly and extremely slowly in the composter. They may take several years to decompose. This is due to the high content of tannic acid, which also remains in the compost and has a growth-inhibiting effect rather than an invigorating one. Mix in discreetly and do not insert as a heap. Otherwise it would be better to collect it in the organic bin or as a green waste.
The oak leaves are always lush and hardy. This also applies to composting because just like walnuts or plantans, they do not rot due to their tannic acid content.
Fruit tree leaves
Contrary to the other badly rotting autumn leaves like oak or walnut, leaves of all fruit trees like pear, apple or cherry are very well suited for composting and as humus brings the gardener very valuable soil for application to beds, lawns and under bushes.
Maple, ash or linden leaves are also valuable components that should not simply be given to garbage disposal. They can be composted very well with other green waste, rot quickly and result in a fertile soil.
Application on beds and under bushes
If you don’t have a compost heap, you can also use the mountains of leaves in other ways in the garden. Rapidly rotting leaves can be spread directly on the beds and optionally also raked in. Already in spring, valuable nutrients are immediately available that allow the bed to bloom again quickly. In addition, leaves offer protection from the cold.
Badly rotting leaves like those of oak or walnut can be better used to protect against the cold, or they can also be placed directly under bushes and hedges , because the tannin ensures that weeds can only germinate with great difficulty.
An additional positive effect of the leaf layer is that the soil is better protected against drying out. A similar effect to a vegetation with ground cover .
Shelter for hedgehogs and useful microorganisms
The whole autumn leaves do not always have to disappear from the garden immediately. Especially in the cold winter, it offers shelter to many animals. The hedgehog in the garden likes to build a place to sleep under large piles of leaves and accomplishes many beneficial tasks in the garden kingdom. For example, it eats pests.
When winter is over, the pile can be disposed of or used for other purposes. Hedgehogs leave their burrows very quickly towards the end of winter.
Lots of tiny organisms and insects hibernate under the leaves that remain, which become active again in spring at the latest and fulfill their natural task in the garden.
Cold protection for roses
If you have roses in the garden, you can protect them from a harsh winter with a layer of leaves. Specimens sensitive to frost and their roots react negatively to temperatures that are too low. If you don’t want to wrap them up, you can use the natural cold protection with autumn leaves.
Burning autumn leaves?
Anyone who has thought of this radical method should think again, because burning leaves is not only prohibited because it releases fine dust and pollutants, but basically also represents a burning of valuable substances that can cause valuable material to form on the compost.
Anyone who has ever tried to burn leaves in the fireplace will quickly notice that the calorific value is not only extremely low, but also generates an excessive amount of smoke and smoke, which smells unpleasant and makes more dirt than necessary.