October 30, 2014

FOLIAGE, IT DOESN'T JUST MAKE NH THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE ON EARTH:

Feed your garden with fall leaves : Shredded leaves layered into a bed makes for rich spring soil. (Jane Shellenberger,  OCTOBER 29, 2014, CS Monitor)

Leaves are one of the best ingredients for healthy vegetable garden soil. They contain all three major plant nutrients (nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus), plus mineral micronutrients that plants need. These nutrients and micronutrients become available to plants through decomposition by soil microbes. Earthworms pull leaf pieces down from the surface, eating them as they tunnel through soil. The worms aerate and fertilize the soil with their castings (poop), making nutrients available to smaller soil critters and microbes, including the beneficial bacteria and fungi that play a major role in the decomposition and growth processes. 

If you start building healthy soil now, using leaves to feed the worms and microbes, they will do the heavy lifting for you. By the time spring arrives, you'll be ready to plant without backbreaking digging or rototilling, which rips up the tapestry of soil life.

Posted by at October 30, 2014 6:30 PM
  

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