Looking around the cottage yard, I am thinking that maybe I should be raking the leaves that have fallen. After all, I do it at home, why not the cottage? Well…for one thing the cottage is in the woods, there are supposed to be leaves in the woods, where there are trees. For another, the leaves add a kind of ‘rustic’ look to the place, and of course, they eventually rot and create soil. Eventually…however, leaves on top of the ground, not in a composter, actually take quite a long time to rot and turn into ground. Leaves are good in your vegetable garden, especially if they have had time to rot a bit. They give off valuable nutrients and I believe oxygen as they decompose, which is good for the ground.
For all intents and purposes, or as my friend says, “all intense purposes” I think they are better left alone, to blow around, get wet, get dry and eventually disappear back into the ground. Leaves do add nutrients to the soil eventually. However, around the immediate vicinity of the cottage, and in particular on the front yard, where I have tried to get grass to grow, it might be better to get some of them off.
So I studied the problem, even left it alone for several weeks, hoping they would somehow disappear, but, alas, they are still there. If I had one of those leaf blowers like this Black & Decker 140 MPH FlexTube Electric Blower and Sweeper I suppose I could just blow them all over to the neighbors yard, which, I have to admit holds a certain allure…..
However, I can’t see doing that, and he would just blow them back anyway, so there’s not much point in that. Nope, it’s rake em’ or leave em’ (pardon the pun) I think I will rake up the bulk of the leaves on the front yard, but the rest, well they can stay where they are.
Now the secret to good leaf raking, other than getting your wife to do it, is to put down a big sheet of plastic, say about 12 square feet, an old tarp will do nicely. Lay it flat on the ground, put some rocks in the four corners to keep it from blowing away, and rake all your leaves towards it, and finally on to it. Then, when you are ready, get your wife or husband or kids to help you by picking up the corners and folding the tarp up, forming a bag that holds all the leaves. Then it’s just a matter of carrying the bag to your composter, or a place in the woods where you pile leaves, (a.k.a. the leaf pile) and dump them. Or…wait until nightfall and carry them over to your neighbor’s front yard and dump them….
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