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Leaf Mold vs. Compost

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Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  sfg4uKim on 8/14/2016, 3:03 pm

Thought this might be handy for everyone with Autumn creeping up on us.

You're probably familiar with Composting, but putting too many leaves in your compost pile is not a great idea.

Instead, how about making leaf mold?

Here's a great TEDx talk by Mel's friend Mike McGrath. I guarantee you'll start stealing your neighbors' leaves this year: LEAF MOLD - MIKE McGRATH TEDx TALK


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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  sanderson on 8/14/2016, 7:40 pm

Good video.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  landarch on 8/14/2016, 11:05 pm

I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  countrynaturals on 8/15/2016, 1:37 am

@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.
I also have oak leaves. I read that they have all the necessary minerals, but not all the nitrogen we need, so we should add manure (which I have plenty of -- horses). It also said that oak leaves are acidy, so we need to add garden lime for non-acid loving plants. We're getting a chipper/shredder, so I'm gonna try running the aged manure and whole oak leaves through and see if I can get "instant compost" out of it. Cool

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  yolos on 8/15/2016, 7:47 am

@countrynaturals wrote:
@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.
I also have oak leaves. I read that they have all the necessary minerals, but not all the nitrogen we need, so we should add manure (which I have plenty of -- horses). It also said that oak leaves are acidy, so we need to add garden lime for non-acid loving plants. We're getting a chipper/shredder, so I'm gonna try running the aged manure and whole oak leaves through and see if I can get "instant compost" out of it. Cool
I use live oak leaves and running them thru a chipper helps but they still take forever to decompose in a normal compost pile.  I tried making Leaf Mold with them but after 1 year I really couldn't tell any difference maybe except they were a darker color.  The leaves at the bottom were good enough to use as mulch.  It helped when I made sure they were moist and also turned every once in a while.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  countrynaturals on 8/15/2016, 11:29 am

@yolos wrote:
@countrynaturals wrote:
@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.
I also have oak leaves. I read that they have all the necessary minerals, but not all the nitrogen we need, so we should add manure (which I have plenty of -- horses). It also said that oak leaves are acidy, so we need to add garden lime for non-acid loving plants. We're getting a chipper/shredder, so I'm gonna try running the aged manure and whole oak leaves through and see if I can get "instant compost" out of it. Cool
I use live oak leaves and running them thru a chipper helps but they still take forever to decompose in a normal compost pile.  I tried making Leaf Mold with them but after 1 year I really couldn't tell any difference maybe except they were a darker color.  The leaves at the bottom were good enough to use as mulch.  It helped when I made sure they were moist and also turned every once in a while.
Hmm, so what I need is a giant coffee grinder? I'm sure I could find an old food processor at a yard sale, but that would be very labor intensive. We have a cement mixer, but I'm not ready for a divorce, yet. affraid There must be something I could do to pulverize these puppies. thinking

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  yolos on 8/15/2016, 12:47 pm

@countrynaturals wrote:
@yolos wrote:
@countrynaturals wrote:
@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.
I also have oak leaves. I read that they have all the necessary minerals, but not all the nitrogen we need, so we should add manure (which I have plenty of -- horses). It also said that oak leaves are acidy, so we need to add garden lime for non-acid loving plants. We're getting a chipper/shredder, so I'm gonna try running the aged manure and whole oak leaves through and see if I can get "instant compost" out of it. Cool
I use live oak leaves and running them thru a chipper helps but they still take forever to decompose in a normal compost pile.  I tried making Leaf Mold with them but after 1 year I really couldn't tell any difference maybe except they were a darker color.  The leaves at the bottom were good enough to use as mulch.  It helped when I made sure they were moist and also turned every once in a while.
Hmm, so what I need is a giant coffee grinder? I'm sure I could find an old food processor at a yard sale, but that would be very labor intensive. We have a cement mixer, but I'm not ready for a divorce, yet. affraid There must be something I could do to pulverize these puppies. thinking
Lawn mower.  I set up a sort of corral and mowed over them a few times.  Then I got smart and used my lawn mower with a bag attachment.  I have also used one of those leaf blowers that you can convert into a leaf vacumn that sucks up the leaves and shreds them.  I have also used a string trimmer with leaves inside a garbage can.  And last but not least, a gas powered leaf shredder.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2016, 2:16 pm

Lawn mower with bag is good, especially if you do it twice.  Or cheap-o chipper/shredder like Jimmy and I have.  Just remember that oak may take over a year, won't be ready for next spring, or next fall, even with horse pooh.  Water and turn occasionally and have patience.  Meanwhile, use other leaves for compost for next spring. I need a better photo of the chipper/shredder.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  Kelejan on 8/15/2016, 3:16 pm

@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.


I already have four neighbours lined up to give me their leaves this fall. Just in my  evening walk area that takes 15 minutes.  (I go round twice so that is 30 minutes walk each night,) I do not need to ask them, just sweep up when ready.  Most likely they will sweep up for and bag them.  I can take my shopping trolley and gather three bags full at a time whenever I feel like it. 

So far one oak tree, one maple tree and another two trees that have small leaves.  Plus my own apple, cherry and birch trees.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  landarch on 8/15/2016, 6:20 pm

IT's good to make arrangements for leaves...I have a pick-up truck and can usually find bags of leaves for the taking during the fall, however you never really know what is in the bags...acorns, maple and ash seeds, sticks, dog pool, chunks of asphalt and gravel, etc.  If neighbors know you are taking them they may take more care in what they put in.

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  countrynaturals on 8/15/2016, 6:33 pm

@yolos wrote:
@countrynaturals wrote:
@yolos wrote:
@countrynaturals wrote:
@landarch wrote:I've seen this before...good info.  I do my SFG near the street (front yard) because I have four large bur oak trees that shade the remainder of my lot...I bag them with my Honda quadracut mulching mower, pour them out on the lawn, and mulch again as oaks take longer to break down.  I am thinking of offer to bag my neighbor's maple leaves this year to add some variety.
I also have oak leaves. I read that they have all the necessary minerals, but not all the nitrogen we need, so we should add manure (which I have plenty of -- horses). It also said that oak leaves are acidy, so we need to add garden lime for non-acid loving plants. We're getting a chipper/shredder, so I'm gonna try running the aged manure and whole oak leaves through and see if I can get "instant compost" out of it. Cool
I use live oak leaves and running them thru a chipper helps but they still take forever to decompose in a normal compost pile.  I tried making Leaf Mold with them but after 1 year I really couldn't tell any difference maybe except they were a darker color.  The leaves at the bottom were good enough to use as mulch.  It helped when I made sure they were moist and also turned every once in a while.
Hmm, so what I need is a giant coffee grinder? I'm sure I could find an old food processor at a yard sale, but that would be very labor intensive. We have a cement mixer, but I'm not ready for a divorce, yet. affraid There must be something I could do to pulverize these puppies. thinking
Lawn mower.  I set up a sort of corral and mowed over them a few times.  Then I got smart and used my lawn mower with a bag attachment.  I have also used one of those leaf blowers that you can convert into a leaf vacumn that sucks up the leaves and shreds them.  I have also used a string trimmer with leaves inside a garbage can.  And last but not least, a gas powered leaf shredder.
I found an electric mulcher that swears I can put the leaves in and set the dial to "fine" and use immediately for compost or mulch. So, what could possibly go wrong?  Rolling Eyes

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Re: Leaf Mold vs. Compost

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2016, 8:21 pm

rofl

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