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To rake or not to rake? (Total novice - please help using small words)

(13 Posts)
VBisme Sun 13-Oct-13 10:17:10


We moved into our new home in July, it comes with an acre of woodland which includes conifers, oak, birch and some apple trees. It was gorgeous in summer, but now we're in autumn I feel we should be doing some maintenance. I just have no idea what?

Apples are being picked every couple of days (plenty of crumble making), and we're piling up the windfalls in one place for the multitude of animals which seem to live there.

The leaves are beginning to drop thick and fast, should I be raking these up regularly, there is grass underfoot, will leaving the leaves damage the grass?

I feel like we've bitten off more than we can chew, I started with the approach that woodland will look after itself, but now I'm worried that we're neglecting our duty somehow.

We also have a small walled garden, but I'm just maintaining that for year 1 until I know what's in the borders every season.

Any advice gratefully recieved!

funnyperson Sun 13-Oct-13 11:04:38

Dear vbisme this sounds absolutely wonderful!
Buy a compost bin such as this
and when you rake up the leaves put them in the compost bin and they will make compost.
I do not rake up my leaves till they have all fallen because I like the look of them, but wiser less lazy people tell me it is better to rake them up regularly.

Though if your woodland is woodland perhaps the leaves should be just left there as they will decompose naturally on the woodland floor- an acre seems like a lot of leaves to be raking. I would only rake if there were lawns or flower beds underneath.

Your small walled garden sounds wonderful, truly wonderful. In fact I already know I want your garden. smile However do please join us on the potting shed summer party and share garden thoughts and ideas and concerns with the rest!

Regarding apples: Monty Don has a good way of storing them in a dry shed.

VBisme Sun 13-Oct-13 11:19:54

Thank you so much, I feel an absolute fraud being in the gardening section, but I've bought some hunter wellies and a fair amount of gardening equipment (all the gear and no idea!).

The woodland and the garden are both lovely, and I plan to try and keep them that way, I know I'm going to be spending a lot of time on here!

funnyperson Sun 13-Oct-13 15:52:09

vbisme the English do not garden in Hunter wellies. They garden in crocs bought for £5.00 at the local garden centre. I am reminded of an American film of a Victorian Christmas which was nothing like a Victorian Christmas but very like what an American thought a Victorian Christmas might have been.
However the English do go for walks with labradors in Hunter wellies, so they should come in useful.

VBisme Sun 13-Oct-13 16:45:09

shock Thanks for the S&B advice, but crocs and woodlands in autumn don't really mix.

I'll find a less judgemental forum for any other questions I might have. I'm not sure what nationality you think I am, or why it would be relevant. But in case you are interested i am english and your comments have made me feel unwelcome.

Off to rake up some leaves and walk the greyhound (we're too common to own a lab - but that's what you were insinuating anyway wasn't it). hmm

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 13-Oct-13 17:09:34


funnyperson Sun 13-Oct-13 18:30:49

vbisme I'm genuinely sorry if I offended you. I didn't mean to. My best friend walks her labrador wearing her hunters. I genuinely don't understand why that offended you. I'm too common to own hunters or a labrador.

cantspel Sun 13-Oct-13 20:52:14

Put your prickles away VB funny was not being offensive and no harm was meant. It is just hunters tend to be more an item bought to wander through the countryside in with a dog at your heals whilst wearing a full lenght berber. Where as us gardening folk would spend the cost of the hunters on yet more plants whilst wearing last years crocs. No snobery just a small joke directed at gardeners.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 13-Oct-13 21:03:13

Exactly, Cantspel. Funnyperson offered some very good advice and followed it up with a mild and rather funny joke about the sartorial habits of gardeners. She didn't deserve to have her head bitten off.

echt Sat 19-Oct-13 06:16:31

Come on, OP. You were being welcomed on board.

It makes me sad to think someone as splendid asfunnyperson could be so taken amiss.

Don't pass up an opportunity to get really good advice, and chat on the potting shed thread.

bumperella Fri 01-Nov-13 22:40:22

If the leaves are falling on grass, then run a lawn-mower over the lot and stick them in a compost heap. The mower will pick up the leaves (nicely broken up) as well as the cut grass, the mix of carbon (leaves) and nitrogen (grass cutting) will rot down nice and fast.
High-heeled kinky boots are best for the job, as you'll spine/aerate the lawn as you push the mower around. But that's up to yourself.

mistlethrush Fri 01-Nov-13 22:45:26

Bump - I agree about running the lawnmower over leaves to pick them up... but had a giggle about the high heeled kinky boots grin I would get stuck wearing those in my heavy clay!

lighthousesea Wed 27-Nov-13 14:09:45

I will also second hunter wellies beingore a fashion item I only say this to save you some money (they are actually not the best quality). Just get done cheap ones for actual gardening and enjoy your hunters whole you are out and about.

Your garden sounds wonderful. I have no idea what I'm doing, I are gardening as a big experiment. Enjoy!

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