Here's why you shouldn't remove dead leaves from your garden

Author: Clark Tos
2022-11-05 18:51:02

Gardening experts say it shouldn't be getting rid of dead leaves in your garden at this time of year. Why ? Because by doing so you will be depriving yourself of many beneficial vitamins for your soil.

Crédit : C.Hochet / Rustica

This is because the leaves are full of important nutrients, including nitrogen, carbon, phosphorus, and potassium. This natural fertilizer is excellent for your lawn and the small animals that live in your garden.

That being said, you have to be careful not to completely abandon your lawn either, because too thick a layer of dead leaves will prevent the passage of light and thus kill the grass below. The ideal is to have a thin layer, and consider cutting them with a lawnmower to make a light natural carpet so that they decompose more quickly. This prevents weeds from growing and improves drainage.

“These nutrients are returned to the soil. But probably even more important than that is organic matter. It's the fact that you have this tissue that eventually breaks down and improves the health of the soil” Susan Barton, a professor and extension specialist in landscape horticulture at the University of Delaware, told NPR.

Keeping the leaves in the garden , you're also doing wildlife a favor because invertebrates like spiders and worms will all benefit from a moist leaf habitat, which will serve as a meal for those higher up the food chain, including bats and beetles. birds. The natural fertilizer created by these leaves will also reduce the need for chemical pesticides and fertilizers, which will benefit insect populations, especially pollinators like bees.

By not bagging dead leaves, you also reduce waste. Each year, 8 million tons of leaves end up in landfill, and yard debris accounts for 13% of all solid waste in the United States. If you really want to collect them to have a clear lawn, it is best to pile them around the base of trees to keep their properties active while having an organized garden.

Credit: WindowGenie

Follow the lead of nature

“In the forest, the leaves provide about 50 to 80% of the nutrients that the trees receive. No one goes into the forest to clean the leaves. Furthermore, the leaves protect the moisture levels that reach the trees and also regulate soil temperature. They are therefore like gold to the trees. said Melissa Hopkins of the National Audubon Society.

This initiative is part of a larger sustainability movement and aims to get people to see leaves as a natural resource rather than an inconvenience.