Autumn Leaves Are Brown
Autumn is here and those pesky autumn leaves are piling up all over the garden. Instead of taking them to the tip or filling the bin with them, why not find a better way to use them? And as the weather gets wetter, don’t forget to bring your garden cushions indoors or store in an outside storage box.
Help Your Garden Grow
As many may already know, leaves can help to create a great compost or mulch. The carbon-rich leaves are perfect additions to a compost pile, shred them up and alternate between these and the greens you’d usually add to your compost pile. Fruit scraps, vegetables and lawnmower clippings are perfect greens if you are unsure of what to use. Leave these to sit and turn when you see fit and just before its time to plant you will have finished compost with a wonderful balance of carbon and nitrogen materials.
Mulch – “Leaves provide a natural layer of mulch, regulating temperature, reducing erosion, and improving plant health.” http://green-weaver.com Recycling the leaves the way nature does is great for your garden. Layer your flower beds and soil with leaves and begin to reap the benefits. Simply add 2-3 inches of shredded leaves to your beds and vegetable gardens. The mulch will help the beds stay moist, add nutrients and limit weed growth.
Leaf Moulding – This is a much longer process but really does provide a wonderful soil base. Leaf Moulding can take from a year to two years to create and simply stems from piling leaves and leaving them to sit.
Fun With The Kids
This autumn in the South Africa is being very kind to us with regards to temperature, use this positively and collect the leaves around the garden with the children. There are all sorts of wonderful ways to use them to keep the children occupied on the days there is a chill in the air.
Try a Painted leaf picture. These can be used to decorate the house as well as stick on the fridge! You can also use the printing leaves in other crafts later on.
What You’ll Need
- Washable paint
What You’ll Do
- Set out a piece of paper.
- Grab a leaf and add a drop of paint from three or four different colours to the back side of it.
- Take your paintbrush and spread the paint out, but be careful not to blend the colors too much.
- Turn the leaf over onto the paper and press down. You may have to repeat this step several times to get the right leaf print. If you have too much paint, you will not be able to see the leaf’s natural vein patterns.
- Peel up the leaf to reveal your very own painted leaf.
- Set aside to dry.
- Once it’s dry, you can frame them and decorate your home for the fall season.
Autumn animals are fun too! Find the artist in you and throw an autumn animal party! Simply collect the leaves, bring out the paint and colouring pencils and see who’s artistic flare is best!