Leaving fall leaves in your yard could have benefits

3 years 6 months 2 weeks ago Wednesday, November 04 2015 Nov 4, 2015 Wednesday, November 04, 2015 5:00:00 PM CST November 04, 2015 in News
By: Corey Miller, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Homeowners might have a good reason to skip a dreaded annual fall chore.

The National Wildlife Federation is encouraging homeowners to leave fall leaves in their yards to act as habitats for animals and nutrients for their lawns and gardens.

The NWF says animals like frogs, turtles, birds, mammals and many species of insects utilize fallen leaves as a source of shelter and nesting material. 

"Lots of moths, butterflies, beetles and flies, their eggs will stay in decaying plant matter over winter," Wildlife Regional Supervisor John George said. "Then when the days start getting longer and the nights start getting warmer, they will hatch and further decompose that material and start that years growing season crop of insects."

George says there is one species of animal that has been shown to really benefit from leaving the leaves.

"People's properties, even in town, have more importance to our native plants and animals in our Missouri landscape then what they realize," George said. "It's as simple as having enough caterpillar larvae to feed bluebirds that next year or any native bird species. If we do the right things in our lawns those native bird species can do well.

The leaves on your front lawn can also be used a a natural fertilizer.

"Think of how nature does it," George said. "Nature deposits all of the dead leaves and grass litter to the ground where it slowly decomposes and adds nutrients to the soil which can slowly be taken up by plants and used to their benefit. So that has some benefits to your lawn."

Another benefit to leaving leaves on your front yard is a reduction of yard waste in landfills. The NWF says leaves and yard waste account for more than 13 percent of the nation's solid yard waste, totaling 33 million tons a year.

George has a few tips for homeowners concerned about possible dead grass or complying with their Homeowner's Association Rules.

"If you have too big of a pile of leaves on your grass lawn for too long, you could create dead spots," George said. "Most people do it off to the side, under the shrubs or mulch them really fine."

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - As Jefferson City continues to clean up from the tornado on Wednesday night, it still has to... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, May 24 2019 May 24, 2019 Friday, May 24, 2019 12:51:00 AM CDT May 24, 2019 in News
During the chaos of the tornado in Jefferson City, one cheerleading and "American Ninja Warrior" gym got torn apart. The... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, May 24 2019 May 24, 2019 Friday, May 24, 2019 12:15:00 AM CDT May 24, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Volunteers from around Missouri came out to help with the disaster that Wednesday night's EF-3 tornado brought... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 11:52:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Students who visited the Simonsen Ninth Grade Center in Jefferson City Thursday said it is heartbreaking to... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:17:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri's U.S. Senators both voted yes Thursday on a disaster aid bill that includes fresh resources for farms... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 5:38:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Businesses and charities in and around Jefferson City have stepped forward to help people who were affected... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 5:02:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Residents of the eastern part of Jefferson City spent much of Thursday cleaning debris. Andrew Buchanan,... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:40:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - An all-out cleanup effort is underway in Jefferson City, where fallen roofs, busted windows, scattered trees and downed... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:15:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Initial assessments show the tornado that swept through part of Jefferson City Wednesday night had winds as... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 1:23:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - University of Missouri Police are thanking the public for help locating a man who went missing while being... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:26:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Several people in the Jefferson City area will remain without power for several days. Three Rivers Electric... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 12:14:00 PM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
ELDON - The Eldon Police Department is continuing to sort through the catastrophic tornado aftermath around the city. Many... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 10:33:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri lending assistance on several fronts to help people affected by Wednesday night's tornado in... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:54:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The damage and complications from Wednesday's tornado has led to a number of school, government and business... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:41:05 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The American Red Cross has opened several shelters following Wednesday's damaging tornado. The shelters are at... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 8:42:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Governor Mike Parson took time to thank first responders at a press conference in Jefferson City Thursday... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, May 23 2019 May 23, 2019 Thursday, May 23, 2019 6:57:00 AM CDT May 23, 2019 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS -- Missouri State Highway Patrol is all hands on deck monitoring the severe weather effects that... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 7:27:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
MEXICO - Missouri Military Academy has brought back its baseball team for the first time in five years. A... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, May 22 2019 May 22, 2019 Wednesday, May 22, 2019 5:50:00 PM CDT May 22, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 69°
7am 69°
8am 72°
9am 74°
10am 78°