How to make Leaf Mould
A simple Autumn job which will benefit your Soil in the future
Leaf mould is a wonderful free gift from nature, when stored, overtime it will produce a fantastic organic soil conditioner promoting better growth and general health of your Garden.
What trees are best?
According to the RHS, Hornbeam, Oak and Beech are best but many people have found Horse Chestnut.
Collecting the Leaves
Either rake or use a high setting on a Rotator Mower, this will not only suck up the leaves but also shred them slightly smaller therefore activating the mould faster.
Empty the leaves into a Bin Bag and if they're dry, sprinkle some water in and mix around.
Get a Rake, thin stick or knife etc. and pierce a few holes around the bag.
If space allows you could make a Cage from Chicken Wire or Mesh in a shaded part of the Garden and stack them in there. For really good results, the larger the cage the better.
When is it ready to use?
For good quality potting Compost the mould should be left for two years. For general garden mulch and conditioning it could be ready for use after six months to one year. This may seem a long time to wait for those starting out vegetable gardening but if you intend to keep on your patch for 'time immortal' you will reap the benefits.
If leaving it through Summer, make sure it is kept fairly damp. A Bin Bag should form it's own dampness but if stacked in a Cage this may be necessary.
Another good way of storing is in Hessian Sacks..
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