Saturday, October 12, 2013

Don't burn the leaves, they're golden

The weather is staying warm, it's definitely Indian summer. No freezing temperatures in the forecast for at least a week. I checked the 10-day forecast for the Oakland County area at and it's predicting lows in the 40's and 50's nightly until next weekend.

This weekend is a good time to do yard work before winter, such as gathering leaves. There are alternatives to burning those leaves. The smoke causes air pollution and adversely affects people with respiratory ailments and allergies. Leaves can be good mulch and compost, except for pine needles which are only good for weed block. I place thin layers of pine needles around trees and next to the house and around flowers in the flower garden, to inhibit weed growth.

To turn leaves into mulch for perennial plants, it's best to shred the leaves by mowing with a bagger or raking after mowing.

Before you add mulch, clear away dead foliage and weeds from the plant beds. When the soil freezes, then spread the mulch, 2 to 3 inches deep.

For composting, mix the leaves with grass trimmings or weeds, (that have not gone to seed) and livestock manure or commercial fertilizer to speed up the process. For those who don't have room to make compost, many trash services collect leaves to produce compost for commercial sale.


  1. Yes its true by burning those leaves smoke is generated and it causes air pollution, the better option for this it dig the ground and buries them into it, after few months it will turn into manure.

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  2. Absolutely rights! we never have to burn the leaves because they makes pollution and makes many kinds of illness.

    organic gardening