Prepping, homesteading and living the simple, green, independent life.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Raking Leaves is for Suckers!

I hate raking leaves.  In fact, I usually don't rake them at all or do the minimum necessary to make the yard look half-decent.

We have two large maples which dump a lot of leaves on our small 20 x 30 back yard so I felt very smart when it occurred to me that I could just use the lawnmower to turn the leaves into mulch.  No more raking ever again!  I felt very smart to have figured that out all by myself but that didn't last because I quickly realized that a lot of people do this.

The weather was nice today so my wife and I decided to get the yard ready for winter and I broke out the lawnmower for my anti-raking experiment.  I set the blades a little higher than normal because I didn't want to harm the grass.  Result: I'm pretty impressed!

As you can see in the pictures the mower really did a good job of breaking down the leaves.  Where you'd see nothing but leaves at first you'd see mostly green after the mower went over them.

It also occurred to me that when making compost the guides always say to include a good mix of greens (nitrogen) and browns (carbon).  It just happens that a good source of greens and browns are grass clippings and dry leaves respectively.  By mulching these leaves they'll have the winter and spring to break down and turn into natural compost.  I guess there's a reason mother nature doesn't rake the leaves eh?


  1. Question is, does it look decent enough? I guess in your opinion it does, but to most people, decent, isn't good enough, they want their lawn to look its best, and that would be green only. Anyway, MOST people have lawn mowers, so why do you think they prefer the hard work of raking, you guess it, decent, isn't good enough.
    I respect your opinion though mister, to each, his own.

  2. Ya well that's it exactly. "Good enough" is good enough for me. The more I get into this the more I realize that "green" lawn care/gardening is actually the lazy-man way!

    Look at my updates from the dry spell we had last month. My neighbour's lawns were dead while mine only had two small yellow patches.

    If they want to have the perfect lawn, I don't fault them (though I think it's a waste of time). One of my mottos is "perfect is the enemy of good".