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Old 11-02-2017, 10:37 AM
 
Location: Michigan
1,428 posts, read 775,610 times
Reputation: 3096

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I do this:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uZ8z1nrv7I


Or if you are handy and have way too many leaves, you can build one of these:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBGJ4j66kfE&t
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Old 11-02-2017, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
10,369 posts, read 8,780,781 times
Reputation: 6792
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reactionary View Post
Good post 'fisheye'; however, my mulching mower doesn't have a discharge chute (Husqvarna push mower) so I need to ensure that I don't let the grass get too high. I do have a compost pile for kitchen scraps &c, plus occasionally I'll snatch a neighbors bag of clippings to feed the pile.
If your mower is set up to mulch you do not have to worry about going in circles and re-mulching the same leaves over and over.

With our five acres we end up with just about one triaxle full of compost every year. I have it turned over with a front end loader and then use it on the garden or spread it back on the lawn.

Right where we live it has been very dry. We have a very small pond that has been dry all summer and there is a slightly larger one across the street that is also dry. Most people do not remember the forest fires we had fifty and sixty years ago. What happened out West this year could happen here with the right conditions. Taking care of your leaves is kind of like creating a safety zone around your house. It does look like we are getting into a wetter weather pattern; that will help prevent fires from starting.
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Old 11-02-2017, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Upstate, NY
214 posts, read 73,790 times
Reputation: 122
Where I live we may bring the leaves out to the curb where the town highway department comes with a big vacuum truck three times during the season. I have a zero turn mower with a bagger and just do the lawn as normal, driving over the leaves. I drive out to the curb and dump, and then continue until done. It actually takes less time for me because I do not have to bag at all. I have a powerful gas blower to blow out the leaves from the landscaping first onto the lawn. We have lots of pine needles as well. My tractor turns them into dust. I leave the pine needles in the mulch until spring. Occasionally the leaves get ridiculous and I just rake the bigger piles onto a tarp, then drag that out to the curb. I have close to an acre in a suburb.

I used to spend six hours on a Saturday now I spend about 2.5. Done with that.
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Old 11-02-2017, 06:55 PM
 
Location: Upstate, NY
214 posts, read 73,790 times
Reputation: 122
Here is my back yard, and front with leaves at curb.
Attached Thumbnails
Mulch leaves in fall?-0bc781e4-7880-4509-9572-b8041d7df276.jpeg   Mulch leaves in fall?-4d199293-5e47-4b43-b8c1-49f3a8a9445e.jpeg  
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Old 11-02-2017, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Lake Spivey, Georgia
1,476 posts, read 909,694 times
Reputation: 1360
I have almost fifty trees of various sizes (from "big bush" to "HUUUGE") on my acre and a half lot, all deciduous. I have ALWAYS mulched. It is a trick I learned from my ag major father, AND (if I do say so myself) I DO have the envy yard of my ENTIRE neighborhood, where most of my neighbors, but NOT me, use lawn services.
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Old 11-03-2017, 12:10 AM
 
Location: Central WI
885 posts, read 294,025 times
Reputation: 1518
Years ago, I lived in a pretty ritzy neighborhood-- large trees on parkway and in yards. Everybody else employed yard services to clean their leaves, but mine was the only property that wound up with no leaves on his lawn: the wind would blow my leaves onto their lawns, but with cleaned yards up wind from me, none would blow in to replace mine.

Need to rake depends on the trees involved. Oaks, hickory, sycamore and such drop leaves that curl up even when wet. They can be left untouched and will degenerate on their own or be used as worm food-good for your lawn.

Other leaves like maple or ash tend to mat when wet and can smother your lawn-- probably best to be gathered and composted.
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Old 11-03-2017, 12:13 AM
 
Location: Northern Appalachia
3,989 posts, read 5,113,724 times
Reputation: 4359
I don't understand why this is so complicated. I have .87 acres and half is woods that has been left natural. My neighbors have huge oak trees. I have a Honda push mower that I use to simply mulch the leaves. I have never raked or bagged any leaves. I mow as late in the year as possible. I think one year I mowed on December 31st. No matter how late in the year I mow, there will always be leaves falling from the oak trees.

I have neighbors who have the lawn companies come in and clean up the the leaves in November. In a week, their yards are covered with leaves again. If you leave the oak leaves on your grass, they will kill the grass over the winter. They don't disintegrate on their own. They get wet and form a mat over the grass.
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Old 11-03-2017, 05:57 AM
 
Location: SWCT, close to coast
57,534 posts, read 39,961,244 times
Reputation: 9014
Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
We have five acres and I bag them and put them on a pile. It takes three to four years; but I have rich topsoil from all of my organic matter..
What takes 3-4yrs? Bagging them or turning to rich topsoil?


My leaf pile turns into useable soil within 6 months including over winter which shouldn't even count...but total breakdown within 9. Here's a comparison I did.


November, April, May & September.


If it takes longer than 1 yr there's something wrong. It should be turned every 1-2 months for air, and you need some greens in there.


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Old 11-03-2017, 06:52 AM
 
1,095 posts, read 307,304 times
Reputation: 2326
Quote:
Originally Posted by vision33r View Post
Blow them around on the lawn and spread them out. Wait for some rain or snow to get the leaves to stick then leave it. The leaves will break up 2-3 months completely and becomes nice fertilizer. Who cares what the grass looks like in the winter.
Horrible idea. The grass will continue to be dead in the Spring. You'll have to re-seed or re-sod the whole place. It is a MUST to get leaves off the lawn in the Fall if you want to see it ever again.

And any self-respecting lawn service would do multiple cleanups in the Fall, the last of which would include gutter-cleaning.

Last edited by 17thAndK; 11-03-2017 at 07:03 AM..
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Old 11-03-2017, 06:56 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
10,369 posts, read 8,780,781 times
Reputation: 6792
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
What takes 3-4yrs? Bagging them or turning to rich topsoil?
We have a lot of straw duck bedding mixed with the five acres of leaves. The straw takes more time to decompose. It would go faster if my wife let me buy a tractor with a front-end loader and a backhoe to play with. I think she is afraid that I will get too ambitious with a piece of equipment. I would rather use hydraulics than my 70 year old back.

There is a tracked bucket loader around the corner from me for only $3,000; but it has hydraulic problems. I would rather spend big bucks and have no problems and I do not like the idea of steel tracks on our lawn. It is a lot of work trying to turn over matted straw and leaves with your back. Sometimes, when it is dry outside; I will pitchfork some of the straw off the piles and mulch it with our ridding mowers - that helps speed the process.

But regardless if your compost is quick or takes a long time; the outcome is the same - good topsoil.
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