How should fallen leaves be cared for?

Is it best to bag, mulch, leave on ground til Spring and dispose of them?

  11 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Nov 30, 2017
    Rake and mulch them and use in a compost pile,or for mulch in your garden,providing there is no diseased ones
    • Bab22858981 Bab22858981 on Nov 30, 2017
      Thanks! I usu mulch my leaves but they've fallen so late this year and it's rained so much here...that couldn't happen.
  • Ken Ken on Nov 30, 2017
    I like that you want to care for the leaves. You must be a good person.

    In my experience you don't want to leave them unless you want a dirt lawn. Heavy leaf pack kills grass and other low-growing plants. You can mulch them in-place, but the best choice if you have gardens is to make a compost pile with shredded leaves. In a couple of years you will have what horticulturists call "black gold". I do it all the time.
  • Amanda Amanda on Nov 30, 2017
    Hello. If you don't have a ton of leaves mulching them is good. You don't want to leave them. They become heavy and wet in winter and can kill the grass. I would check and see in your area if special paper bags are required. If they are they usually come and pick the bags up. There should also be a recycling center you can take them to, or if you have enough space you would start a compose pile.
  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Nov 30, 2017
    If you can mulch your leaves it is ok to leave some on the lawn as it will put nutrients into your soil. If you leave unmulched leaves on the ground and there are a lot, it may keep the light from the grass and kill it by the time you can get them up in the spring. You will end up with dead spots in your lawn. That happened to me. We piled up our leaves to put in bags and it got dark before we could finish. It rained overnight than froze the next day and we couldn't get them up. The spots where the leaves were had no grass the next spring by the time the little piles thawed enough to get them up.
    • See 1 previous
    • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Nov 30, 2017
      We have one of those blower/vacuum/shredders that we use because we have so many leaves from all the mature huge trees in our yard and neighbors yards that come down for us. We blow them into piles, then vacuum them up and are shredded when it goes into the attached bag. I use them all those bags to cover my gardens. There are always some left on the lawn and those get mowed and left for the winter. We have enough in the gardens that come spring I have to remove some before I can till. I put the excess in a pile and put it around my veggies when I plant. Free mulch, can't beat that! During the summer I put the cut grass around all the plants too. I end up with great dirt tilled up each spring. All I have to do is put down Preen for the weeds and a extended release fertilizer and I am set for the season.
  • Barbara Baldwin Barbara Baldwin on Nov 30, 2017
    I ran my mower over them and reused the broken down leaves as mulch and compost additive. Don't use English walnut leaves.
    • Bab22858981 Bab22858981 on Nov 30, 2017
      I did not know about English Walnut leaves. My neighbor has a walnut tree (English? I don't know). I'll check into what an English walnut looks like on line. Thank you,Barbara.
  • 27524803 27524803 on Nov 30, 2017
    You need to pick up the leaves... then you can mulch them, burn them (check local regulations on burning) both of which (ash and mulch) are good to use around plants or in a garden... You can bag them, some places consider them "recycling" and will process and sell them .. check with your local trash collection company to find out how to and in what to bag them .
    • Bab22858981 Bab22858981 on Nov 30, 2017
      I wasn't aware of the positive use of ash. I don't think we can burn in our town. We do have a very good recycling center and I've had them pick up my leaves this year due to the late fall. I prefer to mulch or compost them. Thank you for your help, Marty.
  • Linda Linda on Nov 30, 2017
    We are a landscape firm. Some of our customers want their leaves bagged & hauled away. We haul them to our place & add them to the compost pile. For some of our customers we rake them up & place them in the flowerbeds for mulch.

    • Bab22858981 Bab22858981 on Nov 30, 2017
      Thank you, Linda. Our town does pick them up three or four weeks a year ... and does mulch them in the City Garage. I have used them around a rose use for years ... and that little bush just keeps on growing! Even in our clay soil....which makes planting very tricky at times. One year I planted 14 mums ... by the next year, not one came back!
  • Pascale Nguyen Pascale Nguyen on Nov 30, 2017
    We rake the leaves, use some for our compost and mulch on the edge of the woods so weeds don't grow in the spring.
  • Suellen Hintz Suellen Hintz on Nov 30, 2017
    Depends on the type and quantity of leaves. I've been told that pecan leaves are acidic and don't break down.
    • Bab22858981 Bab22858981 on Nov 30, 2017
      Thank you, Suellen.
      I bagged 21 bags this week ... we have no pecan trees ... I usu mulch them into tiny pieces (going over them a number of times with my mower) ... but this year, because of the warm weather into November...I bagged them hurriedly this week for the City to pick up for the 'recycling center.'
  • Gene Gene on Dec 01, 2017
    Mow them into crumbs sprinkle them around with your mower, & leave them on the lawn. This will give some fertilizer.
  • Linda Linda on Dec 01, 2017
    you can purchase perilite at the big box stores & it will help loosen up your soil. We also use clay pebbles in some of our dense soil in our location. In regards to your mums - if the roots get too cold they will die.