While working at the library, I scored most, if not all, of my Master Gardener volunteer hours by watering the library plants and answering patron questions regarding their plants and trees. Now that I no longer do the library thing, I need to find another way to earn my hours.
I am going to try and get them by converting all of you to new, green garden ways.
Right now, it's leaves. There are plenty going to waste out there. And chopped up leaves are the finest mulch in the garden. Lightens the soil. Feeds the worms. And FREE!
So gather some dry leaves up into a flat pile of sorts with a rake and put the bagger attachment onto the lawn mower and just start running the mower over the leaves. You could do what my son and I did our first year in Maine. We emptied the clipping bag out onto the leaf pile as we went and sort of double and triple chopped them until everything was pretty much crumbs. Then we ran the mower over one last time and collected the leaf crumbs and took the bagger right over to a garden bed and mulched. 2 or 3 inches deep over bare ground.
If you have a vegetable garden, please mulch it with leaf crumbles. Mulch all your perennials. If we have a "global warming" winter with warm days and then cold days and then rain--the perennials will heave without a good thick mulch to protect them.
If you have no time to mulch now, rake the leaves off the grass and into the edges. They can over winter there and be nice and dry and ready to mow into crumbles in the spring. Do not throw them away.
Yes, this does take time. Yes, you may get a blister from the rake. Yes, bending over will make your back hurt. Yes. Yes. Yes. I know all the reasons you won't do it. But I'm still going to ask you to try to mulch your leaves. Some of your leaves. We need to start taking care of our planet so it will take care of us. We'll start with the leaves. Brown Gold. Go on!