Fall gardeners often face the same dilemma; while using the best leaf blowers (opens in new tab)can make collecting fallen leaves a breeze, getting rid of them can be a nuisance. Knowing how to use leaf mulch for lawn nutrition can be an effective way to use fallen leaves to your advantage as a free one-ingredient mulch that will make your lawn greener than ever.
What is leaf mulch?
When shredded leaves decay, they turn into a mulchy substance known as leaf mulch (or sometimes leaf mold) that is absorbed into the soil and adds vital nutrients back into it. In this way, it's an all-natural fertilizer.
Some people create piles of leaf mulch that they then apply to plant pots or vegetable beds, however here we show you how to use leaf mulch for lawn usage which means adding it directly to a lawn.
How to use leaf mulch for lawn fertilizer
1. Create a pile
After using a rake or leaf blower, group together your fallen leaves to form the base of your leaf mulch.
2. Start shredding
Shred the pile of leaves as finely as possible. Our expert suggests using a lawnmower as a quick and efficient way to shred the leaves.
Adam Whale, who runs The Grey Gardener (opens in new tab), advises, “Chop the leaves up as much as possible as this will speed up the process. A lawnmower with the bag on will be enough or a shredder will work just fine. A mulching mower would be even better.”
3. Scatter the mulch
Distribute the leaf mulch thinly over your lawn. A depth of approximately 10cm should be more than enough to enrich the soil beneath and improve next season’s grass growth. You can use a leaf blower to spread the mulch around the lawn evenly.
4. Let the mulch do the work!
From here the leaves will ‘mulch’ into the ground as they biodegrade for the next several months, hence the name. This will revitalize the soil, giving the grass more nutrients to flourish.
Will this suffocate my grass?
One big myth around leaf mulch is that it will suffocate a lawn and kill the grass. The key to preventing this is ensuring that the mulch is shredded very finely and that the layer of mulch is not applied too thickly. This is why leaves that are allowed to fall onto a lawn freely can kill the grass underneath but a moderate amount of mulch does not.
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