Panoramic Gate Image Photo Credit Jim White
Town of


Leaf Composting: Smart, Responsible and EASY!

What Can I do With All These Leaves?
Leaves will eventually decompose and become soil. Rake dry leaves into low piles and run over them several times with a lawn mower (mulching blades work best) to reduce decomposition time. Gather the shredded leaves and set aside for composting. With a little effort, you now have your own organic lawn and garden mulch without the price tag or trip to the home improvement store!

What Are The Benefits of Composted Leaf Mulch?
In nature, a tree's leaves become its mulch, releasing nutrients back into the soil at the end of each growing season. In our landscapes, we can manage this process in a way that benefits plants while maintaining a tidy appearance.

A layer of leaf mulch:

  • Beautifies the landscape
  • Improves tree health
  • Reduces weed growth
  • Acts as an excellent soil amendment for lawns and gardens
  • Conserves soil moisture, reducing the need for supplemental watering
  • Provides cover for hibernating pollinators and other beneficial insects

Mulch Trees Wide, Not Deep
Spread mulch 2 to 4 inches deep around the base of the tree, in a ring about as wide as the size of the tree canopy. Do not mound mulch around the trunk in a cone-like shape, as this can invite parasites and contribute to trunk rot. A good mulch ring also prevents trunk damage from lawn mowers or trimmers.

Right Way
Wrong Way

Lawns, Too!
Up to 3/4" of shredded leaves can be applied to your lawn as a soil amendment, or left behind after mowing.


P. O. Box 423 | Montreat, NC 28757 | P: 828.669.8002 | F: 828.669.3810