A Roast and A Rake

A roast and a rake? What could the two possibly have in common? One might consider family tradition. There are many legends about the ritual of cutting the ends off the roast before it is put into the pan for which the explanation is, “That’s the way my mother did it!’ Only to find out upon further investigation that the real reason is because that’s the only way it would fit into the pan!

One of such customs could be the raking of leaves. When the lawns begin to be covered with various shades of brilliant reds, yellows, and then crunchy brown leaves, many homewners may ” take on the rake.” Not really knowing why, but only that it has been done year after year in their family. Thus the tradition or personal choice is decided. Some of our research reveals this information:

  • Most lawns are going dormant in the fall anyway as temperatures drop and daylight fades. If you are not trying to maintain a lawn but a yard, the leaves provide nutrients.
  • Avoid a too-heavy, wet coat of leaves by not raking but mow when slightly damp after a dew. When the leaves are about the size of a quarter the leaves can stay on the ground and decompose more quickly to allow nutrients to seep into the soil.
  • You can use your leaves to supply organic fertilizer by raking them into loose piles, mixing in a few shovelfuls of soil and 20 to 30 gallons of water to aid in decomposition. Pull the leaves apart in the spring and spread.
  • To treat leaves as trash is environmentally foolish and finacially ruinous. Many municipalities encourage residents to rake leaves to the curb for protection, but before they are collected heavy rains often wash the leaves into catch basins. There they decompose and release phosphorus and nitrogen into the streams and rivers that flow through nearby communities. These excess nutrients contribute to algae blooms during the summer, which results in lower oxygen making it difficult for fish and other aquatic species to survive.
  • Thousands, even millions of dollars each year is spent to collect, transport, and process autumn leaves that could be used elsewhere in our communities.
  • By keeping the leaves on our properties, we will improve our gardens, save money, and enhance the environment.
  • It comes down to personal goals. If you are trying to maintain a lawn, leaves can mat up and basically cover it and could kill off portions. Of course some people like the look of keeping their lawn green which will ”make the rake” a necessity. Just make sure to discard of them responsibly.

Tonight as you sit with your family at your fall dinner table while enjoying your delicious roast, a topic of conversation might be, to rake or not to rake? Whatever your decision this fall season, we need to all consider savings, both environmental and financial. We at Family’s Tree Service, Inc. understand that. We are working on ways to ”be green” as well as now offering several payment plans to meet any budget. Call us today at 615 452- 3994 and talk to one of our representatives about how we may assist you in meeting your tree care needs. Have a happy fall!

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