Fall Landscape #1  October caramelizes the landscape with deeply saturated tones and sweet, mellow flair.  The static display of Summer foliage turns dynamic, each species unique in color, aflame against the sky.

Fall Foliage Map  According to the US Forest Service, Illinois is in the throes of peak color.  We know this not to be true as the leaves have just begun their transformation, but I believe by the following weekend, colors will abound and amaze.

Fall Leaf  Waning daylight and cooler temperatures are the catalysts which signal this change in leaf color.  The somewhat scientific explanation can be found here.  In addition to color changes, trees also begin to drop their leaves in an effort to conserve energy and nutrition for the winter ahead.

leaves  Leaf drop also means raking, but is there something more useful we could be doing with all these leaves than raking and bagging?  Heaven knows this requires a good deal of effort and even greater amount of patience.  I’m not suggesting that you simply let the leaves lie.  This could be detrimental to your lawn, but there is a pragmatic approach that’s worth trying.

Leaf Mulch  Recycling.  Instead of bagging the leaves for removal, why not compost them or shred them to be used as mulch?  When shredding, you are essentially aiding in decomposition; thereby, returning much-needed nutrients to the soil more efficiently and effectively.  Don’t have a compost bin?  Leaves can be stored in garbage bags that have small holes punctured throughout.  Wetting the leaves will also aid in the decomposition process, which ultimately leads to leaf mold or partially decomposed leaves that can be used as mulch.

Whatever you decide, the majority of leaves will need to be raked and removed.  If you haven’t done so already, be sure to schedule your Fall Clean Up with Sweeney’s.  We can even assist in mulching and/or composting your leaves.

“And the Autumn clutches the forests green

In a hasty and eager clasp;

But the leaves are true to the Summer they love,

And they wither and fade in his grasp.”

-J.J. Britton

Best wishes,

Kim Sweeney