October Jobs For Gardeners - Tidying Up Fallen Leaves
Clear autumn leaves, weeding and pruning materials in double quick time with a handy pair of Leaf Pickers.
Clearing piles of fallen leaves from your garden in autumn can seem like a daunting task, however here are a few reasons to keep your garden in tip top condition this October.
Slugs & Snails Love Leaves!
Dark damp areas such as piles of autumn leaves make the perfect home and breeding ground for slugs & snails. Clearing up fallen leaves will make your garden or plot less inviting to these crop munching pests.
Make sure your plants are kept free of fallen leaves as slugs and snails love to eat holes through plants leaves, stems, flowers, roots, tubers and bulbs.
Leaves Block Vital Sunlight
Autumn leaves may look pretty but they can easily smother your lawn or raised beds, resulting in grass and plants struggling to access vital sunlight to keep them healthy.
Reduce Fungal Disease
Fungal diseases can develop in piles of rotting autumn leaves and spread to your plants if they are smothered by them. Prevent disease such as powdery mildew by removing and destroying fallen infected autumn leaves and use a handy pruning knife to remove infected shoots. This will reduce the amount of infectious spores next spring.
Powdery mildew either spends the winter as dormant infections on green tissues or as resting structures on fallen leaves which then release in the spring as spores.
Leaves can also clog ponds, clutter up patios and make paths slippery, so there's even more cause for keeping things tidy at this time of year.
Keeping your plant pots spick and span will greatly reduce the chances of disease. This cleverly shaped Pot Brush is designed to reach even the toughest parts of your plant pot, minimising build-up of harmful bacteria. Perfect for cleaning your terracotta pots.
Make Your Own Leaf Mould Compost
If you have a large amount of leaves to clear from your garden, don't despair, as you have the beneficial option to make some leaf mould. It will improve the condition of your soil as it's a good source of fibre that helps soil both retain moisture and improve drainage. You can also use leaf mould to enrich soil in your raised beds, rock features, vegetable patches and usual compost. It’s also a great ingredient, along with loam and grit, for making specialist composts used for growing alpine plants in containers.
Step 1: If your leaves are dry, water the heap to get the decomposition process started.
Step 2: Pop the leaves in a bin bag and puncture the bag with a fork to allow air to circulate (We wouldn’t recommend using hessian sacks for leaf mould compost as they will degrade over time.)
Step 3: Store the bags somewhere out of the way.
Most fallen autumn leaves can take a year to become good leaf mould, whereas beech and oak leaves contain more tannin and can take two years to rot down properly. So it's a good idea to keep these leaves separated when storing.
Keep the bags of leaf mould stored for up to 2 years to make high quality compost. 1 year old leaf mould can be used in the garden although it will only be suitable to use as mulch.
Need further help?
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