Mulching with dead leaves

christyincoMay 23, 2010

Can I mulch my vegetable garden with dried leaves? I have bags of them and want to use them in the garden. This is my first garden so not sure how much and when I should put them down - just around the base of the plants, all over the garden, and do I add once all seedling are up and growing? How heavy of a layer?

Thanks! :)

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Okay - I see this conversation has happened down below on another thread, but still asking "when" I should put it down. It doesn't sound like I need to worry about shredding it, though I may run over it with a lawn mower first, then use leaves this fall to start my mulch for next spring.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2010 at 10:50AM
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ditnc(7 NC)

It seems to me that if the leaves aren't shredded, they would prevent water from being able to penetrate underneath.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2010 at 10:58AM
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You put it down when the seeds have turned into seedlings. Put down 2 -3 sheets of newspaper first and use the leaves to hold it down. Also make sure you protect the tender stem from water by creating a crater around it to collect the water. Shred or no shred it doesnt matter but unshredded may start to stink after a good rain. It will all get shredded eventually when you till the garden for next year anyway!

    Bookmark   May 23, 2010 at 11:03AM
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organicislandfarmer, thanks for the info. I plan to put down newspaper for plants and cardboard between rows. And use pine needles and partially composted leaves as mulch but wasn't sure how to put it all together. I used straw only last year but didn't use enough. Hope to get some more this yr. Didn't know about the "crater". You have been most helpful.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2010 at 4:10PM
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