Why "leave the leaves"?
- Leaves are nature's free mulch and fertilizer. They help keep soil moist and enrich it as they gradually break down.
- Leaves provide shelter for beneficial insects, including many native bee species and fireflies, and other small wildlife. They need a good layer of leaves on the ground to survive winter and reproduce.
- Leaves left under trees that are local to our area are especially important. They create soft landings.*
- "Soft landings*are diverse native plantings under … regionally appropriate native trees. These plantings provide critical shelter and habitat for one or more life cycle stages of moths, butterflies, and beneficial insects such as bumble bees, fireflies, lacewings, and beetles. In addition to plants, soft landings also include leaf litter, duff, and plant debris."
* Read more: https://www.pollinatorsnativeplants.com/softlandings.html