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What animals can mulch my fallen leaves?  RSS feed

 
Adam Barley
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I have a significant amount of maple, aspen, and birch leaves that I would like to mulch. As I was raking them up I was contemplating the types of animals that would be happy to help turn them into 'mulch'. Goats? Pigs? Worms? I have about 3 pick-up truck loads worth that I just piled at the back of my yard for now. I may just leave them for the winter and see what I end up with but breaking them down would be nice. Any suggestions would be great.
 
Miles Flansburg
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What type of area are you raking them up from? A lawn, pasture, etc? Is the area fenced?

I usually just set my mower on high and mow them . But it would be great to hear about animals that would do it
 
C. Hunter
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Couple of big klutzy dogs and a laser pointer does a lot for breaking down leaves.

Seems like the obvious one would be chickens and pigs, no?
 
Zach Muller
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Last year I just let all the leaves lie where they may and it was no problem, I did see a lot lost to wind though. This season I raked them up once and put a bunch in the garden and had a few piles that I raked into the chicken coop. My chickens love to play hide and go seek in the leaves, in the coop it will be deeper than usual, but I bet they will have fun digging down through the leaves to the top soil. Now there is a whole other round of leaves covering everything so I may rake just the walkways and keep feeding the chicken coop with dried leaves.
 
Mountain Krauss
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Chickens will do a great job breaking them down while they scratch through looking for bugs. They'll also poop on them, which will help hold them in place and speed their breakdown into soil. Goats will eat them, transforming them into fertilizer.
 
Adam Barley
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What type of area are you raking them up from? A lawn, pasture, etc? Is the area fenced?
I am raking the leaves from my lawn. It is not fenced but I am putting them in a fenced area. I did put a good load in the chicken coop and the chickens are having fun with them but they are not as destructive to the leaves as I thought they would be. I only have 5 hens though.

Seems like the obvious one would be chickens and pigs, no?

Will pigs eat the leaves or just tear them up as they root around?

I would be happy with fertilizer from whatever animal would eat the leaves. That way I can spread it back on the lawn instead of using toxic gick.
 
Ann Torrence
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Adam Barley wrote:I am raking the leaves from my lawn. It is not fenced but I am putting them in a fenced area. I did put a good load in the chicken coop and the chickens are having fun with them but they are not as destructive to the leaves as I thought they would be. I only have 5 hens though.

We put leaves over the annual garden beds then let the chickens have access to the area. Sometimes I'll toss in some grain to motivate more scratching. 7-8 chickens will take all winter to break down a bed of leaves a foot thick over 1000 square feet, but it is pretty much incorporated by spring.

Our goats think dried cottonwood leaves are potato chips, but not enough to make a difference.
 
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