Are fall leaves getting the best of you? Sounds like it’s time to put them to work in your favor. Dried, dead leaves are one of Mother Nature’s best fertilizers. Without them, our forest floors wouldn’t provide the same quality of rich, loamy soil needed to nurture buried seeds. In fact, without leaves, moisture would evaporate more quickly and pests and diseases would have a better chance at gaining access to tender new shoots.
While they may feel like the enemy at times, in truth, fall leaves are one of your garden’s best friends. Here are some important facts to know about fall leaves.
They’re jam-packed with nutrients. Trees roots worked hard all spring and summer extracting nutrients from the soil to feed their trunks, branches, stems and leaves. Those leaves are now full of phytonurtrients that will be recycled back into the soil for the next generation. Phytonutrients also feed earthworms and microbes that improve soil quality.
Leaf mulch is economical. In a Houzz article, Therese Ciesinsky talks about her town’s “leaf collecting day.” Residents blow fallen leaves into the street and a municipal truck comes along to vacuum them up. She writes, “What I see being vacuumed up are dollar bills, the money these homeowners will spend next year on lawn and garden fertilizers, mulch and bagged compost.” Instead, use a mulching lawn mower to gather and mulch leaves to use for your spring and summer gardens. Doing so can put hundreds of dollars back into your pockets.
Organic matter improves soil structure. Our Rocky Mountain geography is comprised predominantly of sandy, well-draining soil. While this is suitable for our most hardy native plants, your landscape’s soil will appreciate the structure provided by additional organic matter from leaf and kitchen compost.
Are you planning on removing fallen leaves from your landscape? The Lifescape Colorado maintenance team will be happy to remove fallen leaf material and compost it for you. Contact us online or give us a call at 303.831.8310 today.