Saturday, November 27, 2010

Leaves, Leaves, and More Leaves

The Stepchild Garden is actually quite small, being about a half acre, though I guess that might be considered big by some subdivision standards.  In any case, it is as casual in design as the Big House garden is formal.  One of my favorite features of the Stepchild is that fully half of it is shaded, which is a treat in the midst of an Atlanta summer;  when the leaves start to fall, however, it's quite a different story.

Even with some help from Chuck and his leaf blower, I spent six hours in the Stepchild Garden today, and have only made it through about 75 percent of what needs to be cleaned up this weekend.  I hate everything about gasoline leaf blowers, from the noise to the rattle-your-bones feeling to the horrible gasoline fumes; as a result, I spend much more time with my little electric blower or (better yet) a rake.

I did cave in this year, though, and get a chipper-shredder, mostly because it was a good deal and because I've never owned one.  It is now my new favorite toy during leaf season.  It is deafening loud and incredibly hard to maneuver around the back garden, but it makes short order of leaves that would otherwise be bagged or run over multiple times with the lawnmower to shred them. The plastic hose shown in this photo is about five feet long, and is a huge vaccuum tube, so the leaves can be sucked up, shredded, and blown right back out over the mulched areas.  Pretty cool,  huh?



  1. Tim,

    Maybe 10 years ago I bought a chipper shredder with 10 hp! Used it two years, didn't have the cool hose. After I didn't use it and the thing froze up on me. 6 hours is a lot of time doing leaves for sure. Bet a good old rake would be faster than a blower with that many leaves.

  2. Yes, I just noticed this evening that I need to return one more time and mow and mulch up the front yard leaves. Our cold is getting to be too much to be out in it. Looks like a fun toy.

  3. I know how you feel about raking! I just posted about it. How lucky you have this chipper / shredder. I am SO jealous!

  4. Boys and their toys......I hope it is key start instead of having to pull a cord.
    I could never start anything with a pull cord.

  5. We spent a good portion of today getting the leaves under control. There are so many but it looks like there are not too many left. Of course the oaks hang on forever.

  6. Hello Tim, leaves a constant at this time of year aren't they :-) I leave HG to rake and lift them into the compost bins (which are full at present).
    The shredder looks heavy duty :-) We had one a while ago but not so sturdy as yours and I demolished by putting thicker stems through it than it was made for. Have fun :-)

  7. I've still got a lot of oak leaves left to fall. I could rake today. But I'll probably just spend the morning cleaning the house. It's 32 degrees out there. The leaves can rot when they lay.

    I'll get started tomorrow.