An Autumn Tip for a Better Spring Garden What to do with Leaves By Candy Webb

What’s the best thing you can do right now for a great spring garden?  That’s simple. Condition your soil with compost and sprinkle a bit in with everything you plant. The tulip, daffodil, crocus, and other flowering bulbs you set out in November will grow much more beautifully in the spring if you enrich them with compost now. Shrubs and trees planted this fall, perennials, and even your lawn will benefit from this fertilizer treatment.    

Composting is the natural way to recycle food scraps, organic debris, and garden waste. Simply put, compost is a mixture of nitrogen-rich materials (think food waste), carbon-rich materials (like leaves and wood chips), and soil. Mixed and broken down over time, this recipe of ‘waste’ creates an awesome, naturally recycled conditioning treatment for soil and the very best nutritious meal for all of your plants and vegetation.  

There are a variety of other reasons composting is attractive to the gardener. Compost is natural plant food, so flowers and vegetables are just bigger and better.  It can be used as mulch which holds water, saving not only on your water bill but also your mulch bill. It reduces erosion, waste and even combats climate change. In fact, when we throw our organic trash in with our regular trash, it winds up in landfills where it produces methane, a harmful greenhouse gas that causes global warming. So, learn to compost and save the planet! Bonus!

The art of composting is simple and can be completely free or as elaborate as you make it. A compost bin or pile for your yard is easily created with a locking garbage can. If you don’t have a yard, purchase or make an inexpensive smaller container for use in the kitchen or on the patio.  These are great for producing food for house plants and container gardens. Take the time to ask a few questions at your local garden center or look up information on your own about how to get started composting. Begin by picking up leaves and woodchips this fall while they are found in abundance. You’ll thank yourself in the spring.

Enjoy Yourself This Autumn and Happy Gardening!

Candy Webb is a freelance writer, consultant, entrepreneur, and owner of Taste of Candy. Visit for more Tasty Garden Goodness.