Sunday, November 15, 2009

Tucked in...

Finally, the leaves have all been rounded up, shredded to a point and layered on the flower beds. *oof* (There IS a downside to living in what realtors described as "a park-like setting" with "mature trees".) LOL

But with the new bee beds all those leaves are going to good use. Previously I would just mulch around the house (foundation beds), keep a small heap to use in the winter compost pile and then PAY someone to haul away the rest.

No more of that!

Now I have enough new beds to use every single leaf. In fact, at one point, I was afraid I would not have ENOUGH leaves to adequately mulch the ring bed. But I squeaked by with just enough left over to use in the winter compost pile.

Here's a pic of 4 tucked-in beds: ring, stump, arbor and maple bed.

The bird bath bed:

The privacy bed (which looks really really naked without those gigantic castor bean plants in front of it).

A poor pic of the veg bed:

And, finally, a stitched-together panoramic shot of the whole ring bed. I have not cut back the tall butterfly bushes so I'll have something to look at over winter. But back there the blue salvia and native asters are still blooming away. Yesterday I showed some friends around and we were amazed at the number of bees on the asters. We could actually hear humming, there were so many. I spied honeybees, green metallic bees (sweat bees) and what looked like mason bees (would they still be active this time of year?). It was quite a show - and very rewarding.

Finally, and officially, I'm done with winter prepping garden beds, leaf management, and (hopefully) lawn mowing. That's my story and I'm sticking to it! (Although if this nice weather keeps up I may be having to mow into December! *ack*).

Oh, I may wander out and cut back the occasional perennial stalk or remove the (now yellow) hosta leaves, etc., but that is just puttering - no brainers. *sigh* That's about all I can handle now. After all, by this end of the growing season, there's just not much brain left. ;-D


  1. Looks excellent! Don't you just love fall leaves. I have used all our too. I am mulching beds and the rest are going into the veggy garden. Piling them up nice and thick.

  2. Hi Michelle - yep, leaves are so excellent and shouldn't go to waste. Worms love chowing down on them all winter long from underneath. :-D

  3. Congrats on having it all done! It is a good feeling....I did mine the easy way by mowing and throwing the windrow toward the beds or bushes I wanted mulched. It works pretty well.

    You have things looking very good.

  4. Thanks, gld -- It IS a chore, but rewarding both for accomplishment and for improving the beds. I do the windrow thing around a clump of birch and the spruce tree. The rest I load onto a large tarp and pull them with the tractor to the various beds. 85% of my trees are on the frontside of the property while all the flowerbeds are way in the back... And thanks for visiting! :-D

  5. Well done, Kris. You can sit back and relax and enjoy your coffeee over winter now.
    I wish I had all those leaves, but, strange enough, leaves take ages to decompose in my climate! I left some on one of the beds here last spring and they are still looking good! Maybe because we don't have severe winter to help break them down.

  6. Hello Ha Xuan! Good to hear from you again. How odd that your leaves don't break down very fast. Do they actually contact the soil? What happens here is that earthworms eat them over winter and in spring when we get rain the rest deteriorates rapidly. Or maybe your leaves are like our oak leaves which take ages to break down...

    Anyway, I'll be enjoying my coffee. Come February I'll start wintersowing many more perennials outside in jugs as well as starting my annual flowers and veg plants in the basement. It's always something, no?

  7. I'm jealous of your leaf sources! Here I've been bumming 'em off the neighbor, plus a friend who lives over 40 minutes away brought me some big bags full. Oh, and then there was the morning I begged the bagged leaves off another friend shortly before the garbage truck showed up! ;-)

    There really is something nice about seeing a bed covered in leaves.... I realize it's not a more long-lasting cover like wood mulch, but it looks so nice!

  8. Jeph, I'll probably never have to put wood mulch on these new beds. The grass clippings are still there under the leaves. I'll just keep layering clippings & leaves and grow stuff right in there. When I install a plant I'll add compost and some potting mix to get things going. And ya gotta love the price -- FREE! :-D

  9. Free? Heck, I beg for the stuff! ;-)


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