10 Things You Can Do With a Pile of Leaves
From composting to mulching to decorating your home, or just having some backyard fun, you can do a lot with a pile of leaves.
Fall leaves make the perfect seasonal addition to your compost pile. Simply layer them between all your green garden debris.
Balance is everything when it comes to successful composting. To maintain a healthy ratio of carbon and nitrogen materials in the compost bin, your pile should have about two-thirds carbon (brown) materials and one-third nitrogen (green) materials. Before fall is over, brush up on winter composting with these 10 helpful tips.
Gather up some of the most attractive leaves and press them to create beautiful artwork. To press leaves, be sure to choose ones that aren’t spotted or bumpy. Then sandwich the leaves between newspaper or waxed paper and lay your heaviest books on top for about two weeks, or until the leaves are totally dry. Another option is to press leaves under a piece of glass on a coffee table for seasonal decor. Here are the best trees for fall foliage.
Take Family Photos
There’s no doubt fall is one of the most beautiful seasons of the year, from the sun’s more gentle light to the incredible foliage colors. Before you start raking your yard, take some family photos at the height of the fall leaves’ vibrant color. Here are the 15 best home improvement projects to do in fall.
Create a Seasonal Still Life
You don’t have to do much to make fall leaves look pretty. Create a leaf bouquet by collecting undamaged leaves with long stems and putting them in water, like flowers. Unless they are really dry to start, they will look fresh for at least a couple of days. Check out this uniquely beautiful leaf-printed concrete coffee table.
Use Them as Protective Mulch
Before you rake up and get rid of your fall foliage, make use of it. Leaves make a wonderfully protective cover for overwintering tender perennials or root crops stored in the ground. The leaves work to successfully insulate your crops, allowing such things as fall-planted garlic to root without sprouting.
Adding a layer of mulch pays off. Here’s your guide to successful mulching.
Make a Scarecrow
Maybe you actually want to use a scarecrow to discourage birds from disturbing and feeding on recently cast seed and growing crops. Or maybe you want to make a silly leaf person that sits in a chair by your front door. Either way, making a scarecrow is fun! Simply stuff the leaves into old clothes or even burlap bags. Check out these 13 amazingly creative scarecrows.
Have Fun with Fido
Most dogs love to jump into a pile of leaves, and many will be just as happy to have you pile them up high around their heads for one adorable photo op. Get the kids involved by letting them jump in and out of the pile for the ultimate natural playground and cuteness overload.
Shred and Spread Them
When you feel you’ve had enough fun, creativity and productivity with your fall foliage, what’s left to do? You can shred and spread them! Either go over the pile with a mulching lawnmower or toss them into a shredder. The finely cut leaves will decompose much faster and rapidly become part of the soil you spread them on. Here are 15 super-useful tools for dealing with leaves.