Autumn is upon us. The temperature is dropping, as are the leaves; it might seem like everything in the garden is slowing down for a long winter slumber, but in actual fact, there’s plenty for the budding gardener to do.

 

Today we’re going to talk you through how to make the most of the leaves you’re probably sick of raking up. We’re going to explain how to make brilliant leaf mould.

 

Leaf Mould?

Leaf mould is fantastic for your garden. Collecting up all the fallen leaves from your garden and using them to make fantastic, nutritious compost or using them to mulch your borders is one of the best things you can do for your garden at this time of year.

 

If you know your soil could do with a little helping hand, leaf mulch is your best bet – there really is no end of the goodness this stuff provides.

 

Which Leaves Can I Use?

The best leaves you can use are those that fall from deciduous trees. Evergreens tend to take a good few years to rot down and this is not what you really want. It’s best to add these to a well-established compost heap instead.

 

Oak and beech leaves rot down very quickly and others may take a little while longer.

 

Where Should I Put Them?

The quickest, easiest and cheapest way to make the most of your autumn bounty, is to store your leaves in a bin bag. Collect all your leaves in a bin-bag, poke a good few holes through the bottom and a little way up the sides, and if the leaves are dry, sprinkle with water. Tie up the bag and Bob is your proverbial.

 

Stash leaf-filled bin bags in a hidden area under a tree or behind a shed so they don’t ruin the look of your garden and ‘leaf’ Mother Nature to do her work.

 

Alternatively, you could make yourself a lovely leaf bin. Make a square frame somewhere secluded in your garden, with four tree-stakes, and a roll of chicken wire. Staple the chicken wire in place after rolling it around your stakes and then make sure you fold the raw edges of the chicken wire over so they’re not dangerous. When you’ve done all that, fill the bin with leaves and leave it.

 

How Long?

‘Leaf’ your leaves and your leaf bins until next Autumn. When you return, you should find some lovely rotted, crumbly material in place of the leaves you collected– this is your brilliant leaf mould. Think of this as stage one: this is the stuff you can use as a mulch to improve moisture retention and provide nutrition.

 

If you leave it another year, you will have compost which can then be dug further down into your soil.

 

Making leaf mulch is one of the easiest DIY jobs you can do in your garden. It’s also a great way to provide plenty of good well-rotted organic matter to your garden totally free of charge.

 

If you’ve got a few leaves that have dropped, why not make yourself a leaf bin this weekend?