The air is crisp, the leaves are changing and autumn is in full swing. Deciduous trees everywhere are shedding their leaves and covering lawns. But before you drag out your rake and trash bags and spend hours raking and bagging leaves, consider mulching. Tree leaves are actually a valuable resource and can be used as a good source of organic material for your lawn or landscape. Fallen tree leaves, if left alone will form an organic carpet over ground that conserves moisture, prevents soil erosion and stabilizes ground temperatures. As the leaves decompose, they provide existing plants with a slow supply of nutrients. Leaves contain 60-80% of the nutrients a plant will obtain from the air and soil during a season.

You don’t have to have a mulching lawn mower to mulch leaves; any lawn mower or lawn tractor will be suitable for a light covering of leaves. You will simply mow your lawn as usual; however, it may be necessary to raise the lawn mower blade depending on the amount of leaves on the ground. You can leave the grass clippings and cut up leaves in the yard as a fertilizer for your grass, or you can bag the waste and put it around trees, around landscaping or in a garden as mulch. Mulching leaves and grass clippings greatly reduces the volume of compostable yard waste that enters landfills. It’s just another simple way to help keep your lawn and your neighborhood beautiful!