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Old 11-12-2018, 11:28 AM
Status: "Failing to just lurk" (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: Massachusetts
8,875 posts, read 9,117,917 times
Reputation: 12350

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I mulch them in to a point. Usually around this time the trees just dump the leaves in 1-2 days and I end up with way too many to mulch in. But, from Sept when they first started to drop, I was continuously mulching them in with my mower.

Yes, you end up with millions of little leave bits, but they settle down under the grass and start to break down quicker than full leaves.

Eventually there is way too much for the mower to handle. I'll then throw the bag on and then empty the bag into a brown leaf bag and put that out for collection.

But this weekend..i had to pull out the rake. Just waaaay too many. Of course the trees are pretty much done dumping leaves, so after maybe one more session with the rake, i'll go back and mulch in the rest. I usually enter winter with a pretty clear lawn by the time the first snow falls.

I have a little over 1/3 acre
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Old 11-12-2018, 01:09 PM
 
Location: Northern Appalachia
4,775 posts, read 5,912,616 times
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I'm going out now and mulch some more leaves. I've been in this house for 22 years and have not raked leaves. Part of my property is woods. I have several oak trees and several neighbors have some huge ones. Most of the oak leaves are still on the trees.

A problem I'm having is the ground has been muddy for the entire fall because we have had so much rain. I'm using a Honda push mower and it does a pretty good job of mulching. I can push it into a 2 foot high pile and it doesn't stall like some of my older mowers would. The trouble is the areas of the yard that are muddy. The neighbors have used riding mowers on their properties and destroyed their grass. I have to be careful not to slip near their yards and part of mine. Regardless of how many leaves I have mulched, the bits of leaves disintegrate before spring. The ones that fall during the winter are another story. The oak leaves get wet and form a mat on the grass, which kills it by spring.
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Old 11-12-2018, 01:43 PM
 
Location: NJ
22,924 posts, read 28,830,051 times
Reputation: 14838
Quote:
Originally Posted by villageidiot1 View Post
I'm going out now and mulch some more leaves. I've been in this house for 22 years and have not raked leaves. Part of my property is woods. I have several oak trees and several neighbors have some huge ones. Most of the oak leaves are still on the trees.

A problem I'm having is the ground has been muddy for the entire fall because we have had so much rain. I'm using a Honda push mower and it does a pretty good job of mulching. I can push it into a 2 foot high pile and it doesn't stall like some of my older mowers would. The trouble is the areas of the yard that are muddy. The neighbors have used riding mowers on their properties and destroyed their grass. I have to be careful not to slip near their yards and part of mine. Regardless of how many leaves I have mulched, the bits of leaves disintegrate before spring. The ones that fall during the winter are another story. The oak leaves get wet and form a mat on the grass, which kills it by spring.
getting stuck in the mud is my biggest problem (well after the malfunctioning leaf blower). i got stuck 5 or 6 times yesterday. the lawn isnt very well established yet since i just put new topsoil on the entire property and seeded this past spring. so its soft in some areas. its not too pretty where it gets stuck but its not horrible. im going to be doing some seeding again in the spring and then next fall and hoping that will put me in a good place grasswise. its thin in some areas now.

the process of unsticking it is annoying (though i became pretty efficient at it after a couple of times). having to basically lift the rear and push (sometimes uphill) a ~450lb tractor wasnt so much fun.
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Old 11-12-2018, 01:57 PM
 
1,456 posts, read 704,098 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
so who is mulching those leaves? i bought a lawn tractor and a lawn sweeper that i tow behind collecting lives. i am doing both mulching and collecting. its pretty awesome.

We do it the old-fashioned way, by raking them up. It's fun and good exercise for us old folks.

We have raked several large piles for composting the leaves to add to the garden soil later on, and we have also raked the leaves into place over weedy areas to let the leaves act as weed barriers as they decompose, which keeps dandelions and buttercups under control in those spots. Love using leaves for composting and for weed control.
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Old 11-12-2018, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,409 posts, read 10,748,498 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
getting stuck in the mud is my biggest problem (well after the malfunctioning leaf blower). i got stuck 5 or 6 times yesterday. the lawn isnt very well established yet since i just put new topsoil on the entire property and seeded this past spring. so its soft in some areas. its not too pretty where it gets stuck but its not horrible. im going to be doing some seeding again in the spring and then next fall and hoping that will put me in a good place grasswise. its thin in some areas now.

the process of unsticking it is annoying (though i became pretty efficient at it after a couple of times). having to basically lift the rear and push (sometimes uphill) a ~450lb tractor wasnt so much fun.
Many of the newer 2cycle engines no longer have the adjustment screws like the old ones had. Well they do; but there is a process that one has to go about to get use of the adjustment screws. It's like telling you that you have to go to the dealer.

As far as your leaf blower stalling out after running for just a short time: Try slightly cracking open the fuel cap to see if it then runs. Some of the fuel caps have very small holes to let the tanks breathe to replace the air for the fuel that is removed. If that becomes clogged it can create a vacuum in the tank. Anyway; it is a simple test to see if it makes a difference between running or not running. If it does make a difference then look for a very small, almost invisible hole to see if it is clogged.
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Old 11-12-2018, 05:55 PM
 
Location: NJ
22,924 posts, read 28,830,051 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
Many of the newer 2cycle engines no longer have the adjustment screws like the old ones had. Well they do; but there is a process that one has to go about to get use of the adjustment screws. It's like telling you that you have to go to the dealer.

As far as your leaf blower stalling out after running for just a short time: Try slightly cracking open the fuel cap to see if it then runs. Some of the fuel caps have very small holes to let the tanks breathe to replace the air for the fuel that is removed. If that becomes clogged it can create a vacuum in the tank. Anyway; it is a simple test to see if it makes a difference between running or not running. If it does make a difference then look for a very small, almost invisible hole to see if it is clogged.
thanks for the tip. i tried it now and it ran. but yesterday it did run for 10-15 minutes before it stopped working. so i think i need to test it during regular use.
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Old 11-12-2018, 06:47 PM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,409 posts, read 10,748,498 times
Reputation: 9623
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainNJ View Post
thanks for the tip. i tried it now and it ran. but yesterday it did run for 10-15 minutes before it stopped working. so i think i need to test it during regular use.
You might also try some of the expensive leaded fuel that they sell in the hardware stores. There is also the possibility that it is getting vapor locked from the ethanol - but I do not think so. The weather is not that hot outside right now.

Anyway; what I would like you to do is, if it starts to die, then immediately crack open the gas cap and see if it again runs. Usually, when the gas cap is a problem, the engines die slowly so you might catch it before it finally stops. That way we will both know (if you tell me) what the problem is.
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:03 PM
 
1,637 posts, read 1,466,812 times
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I live in city and for past 3 years, I leave the leaves (small maple leaves) just where they are: in the grass. I think the grass is better for it and looks healthier.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:17 PM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
7,019 posts, read 12,460,256 times
Reputation: 29403
I may have put this in another thread but during my student employment when I went to Murray (Ky.) State University, I worked on the grounds crew. The southern part of campus is covered with huge oak trees, dumping plenty of leaves all over the place. When I worked there (late 70s) the grounds crew put the hay baler to use. I thought they were joking and asked if they stored the bales out by the portable post holes. lol But we'd use rakes and leaf blowers to get them in rows where the baler did a great job. We had people coming to get the bales quicker than we could get them out of the machine.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:35 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
4,598 posts, read 7,680,320 times
Reputation: 2818
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgardener View Post
I can't imagine not using leaves for mulch and compost. I don't bother to mow the leaves, I just pile them up behind outbuildings until they turn into beautiful soil, or I layer them on top of weedy areas to control the weeds.

But I live in the country. I suppose in city areas, this kind of natural gardening is frowned upon.
Nah, I live in a small city (about 20k) and my family and I go hunting for leaves to rake up! We have a privacy fenced in back yard, and just load as many leaves as we can find in there. If I had it my way, I would pile them up to about 1/2 the height of the fence.

What do we use them for?

- Compost
- Kids play in them
- Food for our two big maple trees in the back yard
- Soil rehab since we have kids compressing soil back there, and lose some soil to run off
- Natural ground cover to control run-off.
- Natural ground cover to keep the back yard from becoming a mud pit.
- Feed the worms, which feeds the birds, which means we get to see lots of bird's nest in spring.
- Living on the top of a hill means any leaves on our street that don't get raked end up in our front yard anyway once the wind starts.

Makes me want to go get more leaves..........got my eye on the chestnut two houses up. Should drop here in the next day or two.
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