Leaf Blower Etiquette
by Frankie Flowers | Are you a good neighbour? In fall good neighbours easily become obnoxious — the reason — a leaf blower! Leaf blowers make leaf removal faster and fun however at the same time, using them can be disruptive, blowers are loud, aggressive and who knows where your leaves will blow! Ultimately making you a naughty neighbour! I’m here to help! Here are my tips on leaf blower etiquette:
Do not blow too early or too late in the day:
Sunday mornings are meant to enjoy the sounds of Mother Nature outdoors not the billowing sounds of a leaf blower engine! Recommended start time 9am–10am and wrap it up by 7pm. Word of warning: Most cities or towns have
bylaws in place dictating how early or late you can use motorized yard tools.
Update your equipment:
Your ears and neighbours will thank you! Newer models are less noisy, in fact most have innovations in noise reduction. Better yet go battery powered or electric — you will be kinder to the environment too.
Do not make your leaves your neighbour’s problem. The most obnoxious leaf blower owners are those who blow their leaves on neighbours’ lawns. Bag them or use them in your own garden or compost.
Your low powered gas mower will not move that huge pile of leaves in a matter of seconds or minutes, especially if they are wet. Pull out the leaf rake, burn some calories, enjoy the sounds of our feathered friends and get active.
A leaf blower is a powerful tool. The steady flow of air it shoots out can move twigs, leaves and small stones. If someone is walking by, lower the blower and avoid blowing their way.
When leaves get wet and become matted down on your lawn, they smother the lawn and cause damage. Here are some things you can do with your leaves in the fall:
Discard any diseased leaves:
Use a mower to mulch up the leaves into smaller pieces. If there are not a lot of leaves, you can leave them on your lawn once they have been mowed and broken up. They will decompose over the fall (and again in the spring), adding organic matter to your lawn. Adding nitrogen fertilizer this fall will help speed up the process.
Add leaves to your compost:
Break up or shred the leaves first for best results and check with the Compost Council of Canada for more details. Leaves are great protection as mulch in your gardens over the winter. In the spring you can dig them into your veggie gardens or “leave” them for the worms and other small insects to break them up and feed your soil. You will have to wait until the soil warms up before you start to see any decomposition next spring, so be patient!
If you choose to put your leaves out on the curb for pick up, make sure to check with your local municipality on the types of bags you need to use and when pick up is.
For more info go to frankieflowers.com