Leaves can make a great source of garden mulch, but are most effective if they are first shredded and then allowed to partially decompose in a compost bin. Partially decayed leaves will gradually release nutrients into the soil around your plant, providing the perfect mulch. Shredding the leaves also ensures that they do not become such a thick blanket around your plant that they prevent water from soaking into the ground. By collecting and shredding leaves in the fall, then leaving them in a compost bin until spring, they will likely be ready to use as mulch the following spring.
shredded leaves contribute nutrients and organic matter to the soil.
Leaves will not cause thatch build-up and oak leaves will not throw the pH level of your soil out of whack, research from Michigan State University shows.
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