All gardening experts agree that mulching your garden around plants and bare ground is the most important step in creating a low maintenance vegetable garden. Mulching is a simple process that suppresses weeds, prevents the soil from drying out to fast, prevents erosion, reduces the compaction of soil, moderate ground temperature, prevents mud from splattering, increases the nutrients level in the soil, increases the populations of beneficial soil microbes and earthworms and – let’s not forget – makes your garden look prettier and well kept.
Most Homesteaders rake the leave up after they fall off the trees and burn them or turn them into compost. Both are a good solution for all those leaves. There is another way to use those leaves that takes a little work before using them in your garden.
Leaves decompose quickly which will help increase the structure of the soil over time. They will invite earth worms up to eat the leaves and leave behind nutrient-rich worm castings. Leaf mulch is also excellent for increasing water retention. Once decomposed, it leaves lots of air pockets throughout the garden. The perfect place to store water, oxygen and house microbes.
On the next page Discover how to mulch with dried leaves.