13/01/2014

Why you should collect fallen leaves from your garden and how to do it

The leaves fall from the trees every year. It is a matter of fact. They can look very pretty lying there on your lawn and a few leaves won’t hurt however there are a few dangers in giving them free rein over your garden.

Your grass is a living organism and requires both air and sunlight to create food and grow. Allowing thick piles of leaves to gather on your lawn will prevent sunlight from reaching the grass, therefore suffocate it. Leaving leaves for even just three weeks may be enough to damage your grass and leave a muddy mess. 

Similarly in less extreme cases, as the grass becomes weaker because of the lack of sunlight it is getting, moss starts to grow and takes its place. This moss can then spread rapidly leaving your garden look messy and un-kept. 

Fallen leaves cause other more practical problems too. They can clog up and cover drains preventing rain water from washing away. In periods of heavy rain, this water may pool and cause areas around your home to flood. Wet leaves also create an additional risk to the home owner. They become slippery and if trodden on while walking down the driveway or garden paths may cause the individual to fall, hurting themselves in the process. 

How to clear leaves from your garden

There is a variety of ways to collect leaves from your garden and many different garden tools available to help. While there is no ‘best way’ to do this, people have their own preferences. 

For starters there is the good old fashioned garden rake. This is often the most time consuming way, but it is one of the most successful and satisfying. In recent years leaf blowers have grown in popularity. Users simply blow leaves into a big pile in the centre of the lawn and then pick them up and place them into bags. 

Top tip; if using a leaf blower to collect leaves, put a sheet down on the lawn first. Blow the leaves into the centre of the sheet. This allows you to move the pile easily if you need to and you can draw the corners of the sheet inwards to help make piles of leaves more quickly. 

In a similar vein, garden vacuums are a quick and easy way to collect leaves from the lawn. They are vacuumed up and collected in a bag. The user then empties the bag when required. Apart from saving the user time collecting leaves, most garden vacuums also shred leaves at the same time, making them ideal to use on your compost heap. The downside is that most garden vacuums struggle to collect wet leaves. One exception is the Flymo GardenVac 2700W. 

The last way to collect your leaves from the lawn is to mulch them into your lawn. This can easily be done with dry leaves. All you need to do is drive over them with your rotary lawnmower and they will be cut into tiny pieces. These pieces will then break down into your lawn and act as natural fertiliser.

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