Alternative ways to get rid of this year's leaves
You may not see many now, but before you know it, the leaves will be falling soon.
"I feel like in some fashion you should move them, pick them up, distribute them if you're going to leave them, but a six-inch pile of leaves is not a good thing to have to lie around," says Kevin Molek, manager of Handyman Hardware in Austintown.
The crisp fall air will undoubtedly add a pop of color to Valley trees, and while we don't see our peak color until close to Halloween, you'll be raking well before then. Before you bag and throw those leaves to the curb, consider some different options to benefit the strength of your lawn.
"Once they're out in the yard, I'd like to see you shred them up but leave them. That disperses them, chops them up, so they decompose a little better. Worms take that, take them down into the ground and produce good earth with that," Molek said.
Molek also says to remember to blow out any new leaves from out under shrubs and away from your deck, which can cause any wood to rot during the winter.
If you wanted to do something more with those leaves instead of raking them and bagging them, composting might be the way for you to go.
"It's a layer of leaves that are chopped up and then a layer of greens, something like grass clippings or some other perennial things you might cut down in the garden. So when it breaks down, it's that organic matter that's going to help your plants grow and make it easier for the roots to grow. It has a little bit of the nutrition of the major nutrients we need for our plants," says Eric Barrett, Extension Educator with the Mahoning County OSU Extension.
Barett adds that if you're going to begin composting, leave the compost right outside your house and turn it every few weeks. The Mahoning County Green Team also has smaller composts available for someone to start with.