Some of you may not be ready to discuss the impending change of season. However, it is just around the corner; I already have leaves that are beginning to change color. Autumn is the when, whether you realize it or not, you lay the foundation for next year’s garden. It sounds like a lot of work, but this is a time when being lazy really pays off!
When a fellow gardener visited my home she asked if I mulched my hollyhocks over the winter. I confessed that since they are next to the fence, leaves collect there naturally providing them with all the insulation they need. I am too lazy to remove leaves only to lay down mulch. Plus the leaves are free and when they break down they add nutrients to the soil.
I let leaves collect around the base of all of my plants, including hardy perennials like the Russian Sage, and leave them there until after the last frost:
I collect the leaves that fall on concrete and use them to mulch my berries. I have experimented and found that my berries are happier when mulched with leaves instead of straw.
I don’t rake the leaves that fall on the grass, I mow them, but as when mowing grass, I don’t bag the clippings. Instead, I let the clippings add nutrients to the soil. The clippings also help retain water during drought conditions.
When writing about chrysanthemums, I shared that I do not cut dead branches back until new growth has appeared in the spring. I apply this to most of my other plants as well. Besides if I cut back my hollyhocks after they were done blooming, what would my morning glories climb?
I also leave my Daylily Stems intact. I do not remove them until I can do so effortlessly. Then I use the dried stems as stakes when starting climbing plants in the spring.Sometimes we work harder and spend more money than necessary to keep our yards looking nice. Do your yard and your wallet a favor and embrace your inner lazy gardener! Tomorrow I will share some of the gardening tasks that I do expend energy on.