Fall & Winter Care for Groundcovers
Falling leaves make a great mulch in the woods, but can spell death for groundcovers and the lawn. Make clean up easy for you and good for the environment.
Large fallen leaves block sunlight, hold moisture, and suffocate the lawn, groundcovers, and perennials they cover. Put away the rake and shred the fallen leaves on your lawn with the mower. As long as you can see the grass blades through the shredded leaf pieces your lawn will be fine.
Lightly rake leaves off groundcovers and perennials. Or try this technique. Cover plantings with netting to catch the falling leaves. Drag it off or roll it up to keep the leaves in place as you clear the planting.
Shred these leaves and use them as mulch on the ground around perennials, dig them into the soil of annual gardens, or compost them. Replace the netting and keep removing leaves until all of them have fallen to the ground.
A bit more information: Oak and maple leaves as well as evergreen needles are fine to recycle in the garden. Just shred the large maple and oak leaves before using them as mulch, digging them into the soil or composting. They will break down much faster to improve the soil.
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