The thought of fall brings forth scenes of comfort food and cozy clothing, but unfortunately the crips months aren’t all about relaxation. With the turn of each season, new housekeeping routines must be reinstated — that means raking those leaves. Get ready to use the muscles and keep in mind these pointers when attacking your leaf-sprinkled yard this year:
Determine You Method
Many soil-minded, green-grass-loving homeowners opt to churn leaves with a mulching mower. The benefits of this method are in the long-term result: a lush lawn come next spring. The organic matter of the leaves acts as an unmatched soil amendment for flower beds, potted plants or the lawn itself. If you can stand a less than spotless lawn, the mulching option is an alternative to the common raking and bagging.
Plan Your Attack
Resist the urge to curse the task ahead and, instead, plot an efficient approach. First, enlist help from neighbors or children; this boring task can prove some of the most memorable for kids. Then, outline your raking method with the wind direction, time available, volume of leaves and disposal containers in mind.
While some opt to make an activity out of leaf raking by jumping in the leaf piles and stuffing scarecrows, others are intent on ridding their yards of leaves in the most efficient way.
For those focused on efficiency: rake from farthest to nearest corner, moving leaves into a plastic sheet to make the physical collection as easy as possible. It’s a good idea to use gloves to eliminate any risk of harmful bugs or diseases on the leaves. Make sure to strategically plan the dates of collection with the leaf accumulation, and create separate piles to ensure that the volume of each pile is manageable.
Don’t Get Lazy
The purpose of leaf collection is not strictly aesthetic. A bed of leaves can smother the grass and promote the growth of mold. Grass can’t thrive with a layer of leaves blocking sunlight and oxygen. Once your lawn can breathe, then so can you!
Whether mulching or raking and whether in enthusiastic or resentful fashion, the importance of addressing the leaves that are sure to soon scatter the outdoors is undeniable. Tackle these pesky but beautiful elements of nature, then it’s back to the comfort foods and cozy sweaters.