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Ways With Autumn Leaves

Fallen autumn leaves may mean a bit more work, but they are free and make good compost or mulch. Here is what to do:

Make mulch with autumn leaves

Rake up any fallen leaves around your garden to be used as mulch. Before applying leaves as a mulch, it is a good idea is to shred them. This maximises water and airflow to the soil and the smaller particles will break down more quickly.

If you don’t have a leaf blower with a built-in shredder you can shred leaves manually. To do this, create a pile of leaves on your lawn and go over it with your lawnmower with the blades on high. You should make sure the grass is dry when you do this. Gather the cut shredded leaves and use as mulch in your garden. To mulch, use the leaves to cover the soil around any bare soil in your beds. This will help retain moisture, suppress weeds and keep the soil warm in the winter months.

Make a leaf bag

Gather together four wooden stakes and a few refuse bags. Place the four stakes into the ground and pop a refuse bag over the stakes to create a ‘dustbin’. Fire up your blower or grab a rake and collect fallen leaves, adding them to the bin. When the bag is full, tie it closed. You can repeat this until all your leaves are used up. Store the bags of leaves in a dark place over winter. The leaves will break down into beautiful compost and be ready to use in the garden in spring and summer.

READ MORE: Take a look at these beautiful autumn-flowering plants

Make leaf mould

Similar to the leaf bag, you can use leaves, grass clippings and newspaper to make your own leaf mould. Leaf mould is similar to compost and will help condition your soil. You can use it in your potting soil mixtures, to germinate seeds, as a mulch, or add it into holes when planting.

To make leaf mould, add layers of leaves, grass clippings and shredded newspaper to a refuse bag. Continue layering like this until you have filled up the bag. Next, use a hose with a fine spray nozzle to add a bit of moisture to the bag. You want to add enough to ensure the newspaper is wet through.

Use a pair of secateurs to poke a few small holes along the sides of the bag to allow for the contents to breathe. Lastly, tie the bag up and leave it in a shady spot. Your mixture will need to sit for between 3-4 months depending on temperature. After this it should be broken down, resembling compost and can be used around the garden.

Garden bed prep for spring

Any garden beds that are not being used during winter can be prepared for spring. To do this, dig in plenty of compost, manure and organic material such as leaf mould, the cover with a layer of leaf mulch. When spring comes around the soil will be well conditioned and ready for spring planting.

Make quick work of collecting autumn leaves

With the Einhell cordless leaf vacuum VENTURRO 18/210 tedious leaf collecting is a thing of the past! The powerful 18 V cordless leaf vacuum is part of the Power X-Change family. With a suction capacity of 500 m3/h, the 3 kg lightweight device removes large quantities of foliage, which, with the shredding function, is reduced to one tenth of its volume and lands in a 45-litre collecting bag with viewing window to check the fill level. You can switch between suction and blowing function with max. 210 km/h air speed using the switch. With the speed electronics, the suction and blowing power are controlled individually. The leaf vacuum is comfortable to use thanks to the additional handle, two large wheels, carrying strap and wall mount.

The Einhell Range is now available at your nearest power tool outlets.

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The Gardener