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Old 11-28-2010, 08:40 AM   #1
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Default Mulching leaves

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/07/ga...=in_the_garden

"Mulch mowing won't interest the person who craves noise or needs to blow every wayward leaf from his manicured lawns, but for the rest of us, it seems like a pretty good way to deal with the effects of nature and gravity in November."

"For more than 20 years, the gardeners at this expansive and famously leafy estate have been mowing leaves with mulching lawn mowers. The machines inhale the leaves, chop them into shreds and deposit them as the mower moves along. Engine noise is confined to the muted chug of the mower, not the incessant high-pitch whine of the leaf blower."
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Old 11-28-2010, 06:38 PM   #2
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I spent a good part of today pouring buckets of leaves into my new leaf shredder, making mulch. I figure it will pay for itself in all the mulch I won't have to buy and will cut down on leaves blowing into my pond. It has a vacuum attachment, but it doesn't work well on my huge chestnut oak leaves - they instantly clog it. The hopper works great, though.

Theoretically, you can use a lawn mower to go over your leaf piles to accomplish much the same thing, but I don't own one and don't have any level ground to use one in any case.
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:31 PM   #3
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Mulching mowers are evil. I used to be able to pick up all the bags of leaves I could stuff in my trunk. But noooooo, all those greedy yard owners are keeping their leaves to themselves now.
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:41 PM   #4
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How about waiting until spring to chomp up all those leaves?

http://www.wildlifegardeners.org/for...ason-skip.html
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:47 PM   #5
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You can get all the free leaves you can haul at the Carrboro Public Works place, although it's only open M-F 8-5. They are great, kinda decomposed. Huge amounts.

OK, this is an edit. I was trying to just post this to tturtle, but it ended up at the bottom of the queue again. Sorry.

And I rode to Saxapahaw today for cake and coffee (and the ride itself of course) and waved as I passed your house.
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:51 PM   #6
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The compost you can get here for free is very woody. Big chunks mixed in. If you have a truck or trailer, they'll take a front end loader and dump you a load. If you have a car, you have to shovel it yourself.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liane View Post
OK, this is an edit. I was trying to just post this to tturtle, but it ended up at the bottom of the queue again. Sorry.
Liane, you can use the QUOTE button in the post you want to reply to, and the threaded display mode (Display Modes button at the top right) to show your response connected to the post you are replying to.
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:24 AM   #8
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Thank you! That's so much better.
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:45 PM   #9
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My motto is "Leave the Leaves!" They stay on the ground until around mid spring when I am confident that all of the insects overwintering there have left. That is when I rake them up to a big pile that I use as mulch for the coming summer. It pains me to see people blowing their leaves away or bagging them up to be hauled off somewhere. It kills me to think of all of the insects that are being lost to that practice.
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Old 11-30-2010, 10:39 AM   #10
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Liane, a shortage of leaves is not my problem. You should see the mountain of leaves next to my driveway at the moment, just from the small area near my creek.

I leave the leaves alone everywhere but alongside my creek and pond, perhaps a quarter acre out of my two acres. If I don't move them away, they spend the winter blowing into the creek and causing it to overflow its banks and drain the water out of my pond, thus ruining my pump. Been there, done that, the first year. The netting helps to prevent that, of course, but it limits access to the water for the various wildlife species who depend on it, and I have found toads and one snake caught up and dead trapped in the netting so I like to get it off once the leaves are off the trees directly over the water. There is unfortunately no solution that is friendly to every wildlife species on my property. By shredding the leaves and putting them back where they came from, at least the trees are getting their natural compost back.

I have also created, by necessity, a number of brush piles in places around my creek from the branches that fall, and have left the leaves that are trapped in the branches alone. Hopefully these are providing some shelter for the insects overwintering. And no amount of leaf blowing gets a hundred percent of the leaves.
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autumn, autumn leaves, chop, dead leaves, hopper, lawn care, lawn mower, leaf chopper, leaf mulch, leaves, mow, mower, mowing, mulch, mulching, mulching mower, rake, raking, shred, shredding, spring, yard, yard care

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