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Mulch Those Daylilies with Fall Leaves

By Newyorkrita
October 14, 2014

Each fall I use the abundance of free leaves to heavily mulch my daylily gardens before the winter.

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Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
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Oberon46
Oct 14, 2014 11:02 AM CST
How do you keep the wind from blowing it all away? I was thinking of laying out the leaves then tenting with poly. As soon as it snows and dampens down the leaves I could remove the poly. I would be afraid to leave it buried under 2 feet of snow for fear of rot. Ideas?
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Oct 14, 2014 11:04 AM CST
They don't blow away once they are whetted down. So a good rain really helps!
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
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Oberon46
Oct 14, 2014 11:05 AM CST
OH. Silly me. I could sprinkle them with the hose. Our hoses are still out rolled up by the house but drained and disconnected from the faucet though. Getting ready to move into the shed.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
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kylaluaz
Oct 15, 2014 12:59 PM CST
The soggier they are the better, if you're putting them somewhere open on all sides. Up against a building, in a moist climate, if the wind is not very high, you're good to go.

I agree, fallen leaves are wonderful mulch and fabulous soil amendment material. And, they're free for the gathering. But there was one year I spent hours collecting fallen leaves to mulch a new garden that was in a very open area, in an extremely dry climate. I wet them down copiously and thoroughly but they did all blow away all over that flat land beyond. Three times. So, I gave that up, in that spot, with great regret!
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Oct 15, 2014 1:50 PM CST
I also live in a dry climate. I have found when I shred the leaves I have collected, they stay put ... Whistling The wind doesn't seem to get under the shredded leaves and move them away from the rose beds.

I may not have the same kind of wind issues you have, Kyla, because my primary gardening area, the house pad, was cut out of a slope. I can hear the wind roaring through the trees at the top of the slope, but, although there is wind in the garden, it doesn't seem to be as strong.

My garden is more open, now, because neighbors have removed trees, but the shredded leaves still seem to stay put.

This year I am using wood chips for the garden because of the drought. Leaves just dried up too quickly to serve as good mulch material. I collect my wood chips from the utility company's chipping pile, so I know they have not been treated with anything. They, too, decompose and feed the soil. It just takes longer.

Next year, if the drought is not so severe, I'll go back to leaves. I've found changing mulch materials seems to be better in my garden.

Smiles,
Lyn
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Dirt
(Zone 5b)
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dirtdorphins
Oct 15, 2014 2:11 PM CST
We get wicked wind on my 'slope'-- redistributes everything for me, too, regardless of what I do.
In the spring I clean up deep, soggy leaf piles (and garbage) along walls and in alcoves/sheltered spots and relocate it to finish composting somewhere.
I do leave most all my perennials standing shaggy for winter. It helps to hold whatever I'm using for mulch, and they kinda mulch themselves some that way as they die back. It looks like crap but I get better survival for the herbaceous types.
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
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kylaluaz
Oct 15, 2014 3:17 PM CST
Lyn, that wind situation was several years in the past and in Northern California, actually (Siskiyou County). Here, I doubt it's like that. Also, I had no way at that time to shred those lovely, large, sail-like maple leaves I was trying to use. Green Grin!
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Oct 15, 2014 4:41 PM CST
Kyla,

I live in Trinity County.

I don't have a leaf shredder and don't have a lawn mower. I shred my leaves by putting them into a garbage can and using my weed eater ... Hilarious! I guess you could say it's kind of like putting them into a blender.

Dirt, I wish I could follow your method in this garden, but I have to go out and glean my mulch materials and haul it home.

It's always something.

Smiles,
Lyn
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.

sonjakraft
Oct 17, 2014 7:26 AM CST
do you use fresh leaves or composted ones?
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Oct 17, 2014 11:31 AM CST
Both. If the leaves are large enough for the wind to blow around, I shred them. If they have decomposed sufficiently that they will stay put, I don't bother and just put them down.

I have found that with big maple leaves, if I bag them in black garbage bags, wet, in fall they have fully decomposed to black gold by spring in my climate.

Smiles,
Lyn
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
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Newyorkrita
Oct 17, 2014 12:33 PM CST
I use freshly fallen leaves from each fall. There are loads of them to have and they are free.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Oct 17, 2014 12:37 PM CST
Rita ...

I have to go out and glean my mulch. I can't buy it up here. I usually go to a friend's place. I like to go before the current year's leaf fall so that I can gather leaves that have been out for a whole winter and summer and are either fully decomposed or partially decomposed. I've found they are easier for me to work with than fresh leaves.

Smiles,
Lyn
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Hummingbirder
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Newyorkrita
Oct 17, 2014 12:43 PM CST
RoseBlush1 said:Rita ...

I have to go out and glean my mulch. I can't buy it up here. I usually go to a friend's place. I like to go before the current year's leaf fall so that I can gather leaves that have been out for a whole winter and summer and are either fully decomposed or partially decomposed. I've found they are easier for me to work with than fresh leaves.

Smiles,
Lyn



That sounds good. Around here I have to get them in the fall while they are around. Otherwise they are all gone.

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