Thanks to the time change, this morning I woke up early and what did I do with that extra time? Snuck over to my neighbour’s and stole their 3 large garbage bags of leaves, of course!
Let me back up a bit here. First, the context. I have ten large spruce trees on my lot and only one medium-ish mountain ash tree, so not very many leaves to speak of. I always envy those people who bag up lots of extras to put in their compost, rake onto the garden, or to store and make leaf mould with. I’ve also read about people who patrol their neighbourhoods and steal their neighbour’s bags of leaves, but I’ve never before had the guts. I don’t really know what I’m scared of – probably just being seen and being thought of as that crazy lady who steals leaves…
Now fast forward to last night, as we were coming home from a potluck at a friend’s house. Driving past the neighbour’s place, I noticed 3 huge garbage bags of leaves sitting in their back alley. What? With a leaf drop-off just a half a block away from our house? Shameful! I decided then and there to steal them. So I did! And now rather than smouldering with negative energy and thinking that my neighbours are terrible people for putting their leaves in the garbage, I have rescued organic material from the landfill that will eventually become a mulch for the garden. Everybody wins!
I’ve never actually made leaf mold before (because I’ve never had leaves), but here’s the minimal work method I plan to use to turn these bags of leaves into a beautiful soil amendment:
· Fill a bag with leaves (done, the neighbours did this part! man, this is easy!)
· Moisten the leaves, seal the bag and cut some slits in the sides for air flow.
· Let the bag sit. Give it a shake every few weeks if you want to speed things up a bit.
· Check the bag every month or two for moisture, and add water if things are dry.
· In 6-12 months, use the leaf mould as a mulch or dig it into the garden to amend the soil.
Now somebody stop me before I start stealing people’s pumpkins too…