Friday, October 21, 2011

Leaf Patrol

Our yard gets very deep in leaves in the fall.  Deep enough for a child to shuffle through knee-deep, deep enough to lose a chicken in, and too deep to leave them to decompose naturally or they would smother the grass.  We have  discovered it is best to tackle leaf removal in stages. If you wait until all the leaves fall, it will undoubtedly snow and you will lose your opportunity.
Plus, our handy-dandy leaf sweeper  does a better job when it doesn't have to plow through too deep a layer of leaves.  Also, it fills up pretty fast, and it is more satisfying to be able to create a swath of cleanly-swept lawn behind you before you have to unload.  We bought this sweeper very used for $50 on Craigslist when we first moved here, after we realized several hours of raking could not make a noticeable impact in leaf removal. The sweeper has seen better days--it doesn't tilt to empty any longer.  To unload it I have to actually lift the big green basket out from the frame and tip it over, but it is still a heck of a lot more fun and easier on the back than raking and filling leaf bags to take to the County compost site like we did when we lived in town.  Now I create a big mulching leaf pile in the garden and a huge compost pile by the loafing shed where we can easily mix in manure and bedding.
The leaf-swept front yard. It took about three hours to sweep the front yard and the barn and granary entrance. It will stay pristine like this for a few hours before being littered by more leaves.
Many of the trees haven't even begun to give in to autumn yet, spreading out the fun for a few more weeks if the snow holds off.

No comments: