How To Clean Up Leaves Quickly and Efficiently – A Guide

It’s the best time of year for raking leaves, but it can also be a total pain. If you’re looking to clean up your yard in the least amount of time possible, then this guide is perfect for you! We are going to talk about best practices on how to rake leaves quickly and efficiently. You’ll even find some tips that will help with leaf cleanup after a storm or during the winter months. So sit back, relax, and read away!

Where to put all those leaves?

With its colorful diversity, autumn leaves herald the cold season. For many gardeners, however, the autumn leaves also mean an increased amount of work. Because as impressive as the colors of the leaves are, they ultimately pose a risk to the garden and to people. For example, the fallen leaves not only block the supply of oxygen to the lawn. They also pose a risk of slipping on sidewalks and regularly clog gutters. Home and garden owners should therefore take care of the removal of the autumn leaves as soon as possible. But what are the options for removing the autumn leaves quickly and easily? And how can the autumn leaves be sensibly recycled after the work is done? These and other aspects will be discussed in more detail in the following article.

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Worm Castings Organic Fertilizer

Worm castings are the most extravagant common compost known to people. Believe it or not: as meager as a tablespoon of unadulterated worm castings gives enough natural plant supplements to take care of a 6″ pruned plant for over two months. Worm castings invigorate plant development more than some other common item available. Dissimilar to creature excrement and fake composts it is assimilated effectively and quickly by plants. Yet, Worm Castings don’t just animate plant development: they likewise upgrade the capacity of your dirt to hold water (in view of its surface), and it even represses root illnesses, for example, root decay.

What Are Worm Castings?

Worm Castings contain an exceptionally dynamic natural combination of microbes, chemicals, remainders of plant matter and creature compost, just as night crawler cases (while soggy). The castings are wealthy in water-solvent plant supplements, and contain over half more humus than what is ordinarily found in dirt.

Worm Castings are pressed with minerals that are fundamental for plant development, for example, concentrated nitrates, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and calcium. It likewise contains manganese, copper, zinc, cobalt, borax, iron, carbon and nitrogen. Notwithstanding, the best of everything is that these minerals are quickly accessible to the plant, without the danger of ever consuming the plant. Recollect that creature excrement and compound composts must be separated in the dirt before the plant can assimilate them.

As the natural issue travels through the nutritious waterway of the worm, a slender layer of oil is kept on the castings. This layer disintegrates over a time of 2 months. So in spite of the fact that the plant supplements are promptly accessible, they are gradually delivered to last more. What is a nightcrawler worm? Castings each contain somewhere in the range of 2 and 10 eggs that bring forth inside about fourteen days. This implies that the cycle of deterioration are proceeded by the youthful night crawlers in the dirt, given that the dirt is free, soggy and rich enough in natural issue for the worms to remain alive.

The microbes in the nutritious channel of the worm changes natural waste to regular manure. The compound changes that the natural squanders go through incorporate freshening up and killing. This implies that the pH of the castings is 7 (unbiased) and the castings are scentless (they smell like a woods after downpour). The worm castings likewise contain the microscopic organisms, so the cycle is proceeded in the dirt, and microbiological action is advanced.

What Can Worm Castings Be Used For?

Worm Castings can be utilized as an element of fertilized soil (as plant supplements) for plants in and around the house. It can likewise be utilized as a planting added substance for trees, vegetables, bushes and blossoms. At the point when utilized as mulching material, Worm Castings will guarantee that the minerals are assimilated legitimately into the dirt when it is watered. Since Worm Castings will never consume plants, you can use as a lot of it as you like.

Advantages of Worm Castings

  1. The humus in the worm castings extricates poisons and unsafe growths and microbes from the dirt. Worm Castings consequently can ward off plant illnesses.
  2. The worm castings can fix substantial metals in natural waste. This keeps plants from retaining a greater amount of these synthetic mixes than they need. These mixes would then be able to be delivered later when the plants need them.
  3. Worm Castings go about as a hindrance to assist plants with filling in soil where the pH levels are excessively high or excessively low. They forestall outrageous pH levels from making it outlandish for plants to retain supplements from the dirt.
  4. The humic corrosive in Worm Castings animate plant development, even in exceptionally low fixations. The humic corrosive is in an ionically conveyed state where it can undoubtedly be consumed by the plant, far beyond any typical mineral supplements. Humic corrosive likewise invigorates the improvement of miniature vegetation populaces in the dirt.
  5. Worm Castings increment the capacity of soil to hold water. The worm castings structure totals, which are mineral bunches that consolidate so that they can withstand water disintegration and compaction, and furthermore increment water maintenance.
  6. Worm Castings decrease the corrosive shaping carbon in the dirt, and increment the nitrogen levels in an express that the plant can undoubtedly utilize. Natural plant squanders normally have a carbon-nitrogen proportion of more than 20 to 1. As a result of this proportion, the nitrogen is inaccessible to plants, and the dirt around the natural waste gets acidic.

Suggestions and Quotes about Worm Castings

“Worm Castings beat any business manure I am aware of. The key factor is microbial action. Examination that I and others have done shows that microbial action in worm castings is 10 to multiple times higher than in the dirt and the natural issue that the worm ingests…”

“Worm castings are the best believable fertilized soil for nurseries or house plants, just as cultivating and cultivating. It won’t consume even the most fragile plants and all supplements are water-solvent, making it a quick plant food. The impact of night crawler castings utilized in any of these ways is promptly noticeable. They cause plants to develop further.”

“Castings contain multiple times the accessible nitrogen, multiple times the accessible potash and 1/2 times more calcium than that found in 12″ of dirt. Consequently, castings are provided with accessible supplements. The supplements are additionally water-solvent and promptly accessible to the plant. You will locate that most gardening soils have a supplement life for 2 to 5 days, where worm castings will last up to multiple times as long. You will require 5 fold the amount of fertilized soil to do similar employment as worm castings. So over the long haul, worm castings are a lot less expensive and improve work. Additionally, castings hold 2 to multiple times their weight in water. That implies you water less and the pot will remain damper for a more extended period. Worm castings won’t consume your plants; in contrast to utilizing any new crude excrement (cow, horse, and so on) which can consume root frameworks if not applied appropriately. . . . The compost goes through the worms’ stomach related framework delivering rich natural plant food and a moderate delivering manure which considers better development.”

Instructions to utilize Worm Castings:

For Germination

Utilize 20 to 30% Worm Castings with sand as a magnificent germination combination. It will likewise guarantee persistent and lavish development for around a quarter of a year, without you adding some other plant food.

As a Soil Conditioner

In the event that you digger a layer of fruitless soil, add a layer of Worm Castings and give it some water, you will be astounded at the development of your first season’s plants.

As a Fertilizer

Sprinkle Worm Castings around the base of plants or gently delve it in, and afterward add water. They can likewise be sprinkled for an enormous scope with a spreader. Keep in mind: you can’t utilize an excess of Worm Castings, they can’t harm your plants.

As a Liquid Fertilizer

Worm Castings can undoubtedly be blended in with water. Utilize 1 cup Worm Castings for each gallon of water and stand by multi week. This fluid combination can be utilized as a phenomenal compost or leaf foliate splash. It likewise assists with controlling creepy crawlies. Numerous individuals favor this strategy for application.

We have known for many years that worms are the most ideal approach to improve plant development and to expand plant yield, for example, natural product. Night crawler castings are a marvel result of nature. So in the event that you care about your dirt, and your plants, at that point right now is an ideal opportunity to dispose of your Miracle Gro and to utilize this 100% characteristic item.

How Castings Are Grown and Harvested

Enormous wooden boxes are kept in a nursery with low light conditions and sodden warm air. The cases are loaded up with compost, cottonmeal, peat greenery and other common items and afterward worms are added.

As the worms eat their way through this material, they digest it and it separates and becomes worm castings. The worms are deliberately isolated out and the castings are stowed up for you. Ordinarily worms leave little eggs in the castings which later incubate and become incredible worms for your nursery to proceed with their work!

Natural Organic Fertilizers

In comparison to the chemical fertilizers, I also discussed the merits and demerits of organic fertilizers.

And finally, about many kinds of nitrogen-rich fertilizers too, I had shared the informations with you.

I will tell you about Phosphorus-rich and Potassium-rich organic fertilizers and if time permits, I will also tell you about some specialized organic fertilizers.

So, first of all, let us start with a phosphorus-rich organic fertilizer.

That is, a fertilizer which has, in comparison to nitrogen and potassium, more amounts of phosphorus available.

Phosphorus is such a primary nutrition which is required by the plants after nitrogen in highest amount.

Phosphorus is needed by the plants from their germination through to maturity stage.

Besides being an important part of DNA and RNA of the plants, phosphorus is also a participant in many other activities, such as photosynthesis, respiration, energy storage, energy transportation, cell division, etc.

Due to phosphorus, the root development in plants take place properly, the stalks and branches of plants become stronger, they produce in large amounts, the flowers, fruits and seeds, flowers, fruits and seeds are able to mature at time and their overall quality is improved.

Thus, phosphorus keeps on providing energy to the plants during the whole life cycle.

Instead of being so important for the growth of plants, most of the soils have phosphorus in lesser amount.

Besides this, if the pH value of soil is less than 5.5, or greater than 7, then instead of phosphorus being available in the soil, plants are unable to take the same.

Thus, before using phosphorus-rich fertilizer, checking the pH value of soil is always better.

If the pH value doesn’t lie within 5.5 and 7, then applying phosphorus-rich fertilizer will impart no benefits to the plants.

So, if the soil pH is above 7, i.e., the soil is of alkaline nature, then to reduce the value of pH, first apply nitrogen-rich fertilizer to the soil or add a little amount of Sulfur to the soil and then after a few weeks, use phosphorus-rich fertilizer.

In second condition, when the soil pH is less than 5.5, then by reducing the acidity the pH should be increased.

For this, add either wood-ash or Calcium Hydroxide, i.e., lime in little amount and after that phosphorus-rich fertilizer should be used.

Friends, normally, all kind of plants need phosphorus, but those producing flowers, fruits and seeds in higher amounts need phosphorus in higher amounts.

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So, let us discuss about some phosphorus-rich organic fertilizers, the first one being the Bone-meal.

As it is clear with the name, bone-meal is an organic mixture made of animal bones that contains Phosphorus and Calcium in sufficient amounts, It has 12% to 16% of Phosphorus and 18% to 24% of Calcium.

It doesn’t contain potassium, but sometimes the traces of nitrogen may be available.

Bone-meal has a specialty that the form in which it contains the phosphorus, can be easily taken up by the plants.

That means, by using bone-meal the deficiency of phosphorus can be overcome very quickly.

In a 10″ to 12″ pot, it can be added in amount of 30 to 40 grams.

After applying bone-meal to soil, it should be mixed well with the soil, so that birds or animals do not get attracted by its smell.

Since it keeps on releasing phosphorus slowly for long time, therefore, repeat its appliction only at least after four months.

If you are transplaning a seedling, or, repotting a plant, then also before doing that you can apply bone-meal to the soil.

All kind of bulb-plants, succulents, citrus plants, and other flowering and fruiting plants can be applied with bone-meal.

Green and leafy vegetables need more nitrogen than phosphorus, therefore, bone-meal is not required to be applied there.

Friends, among the phosphorus-rich organic fertilizers, the highly used next important fertilizer is PROM, that is Phosphorus rich organic manure.

It is also called Green chemistry phosphatic fertilizer.

You can get it in the market by different brand names.

I purchased one with the name BIO-ZYME of 2 Kg pack of the PROM fertilizer for about INR 250.00 PROM fertilizer is available in granular form which exactly look like DAP.

It is made basically by mixing two type of things and co-composting them.

The first one is the naturally occurring Rock Phosphate in finly powdered form and the second type of things which is composted with

Rock Phosphate powder, are different kind of organic manures, such as compost, vermicompost, cow-dung, kitchen waste etc.

Before this, only Rock-Phosphate was used as an organic substitute of phosphorus.

But the phosphorus present in Rock Phosphate is not readily available to the plants.

Due to this, the rock-phosphate had to be mixed in the soil before 2 to 3 months.

But, the phosphorus available in PROM fertilizer is readily available to the plants and besides phosphorus, it also contains the nutrients present in the organic manure.

These days, as a substitute of phosphorus-rich chemical fertilizer, i.e., DAP and SSP, PROM fertilizer is being used successfully.

Most of the people who are vegetarian, avoid using bone-meal, can use PROM fertilizer in place of bone-meal without hesitation.

A little amount of its granuels, i.e.,1/2 to 1 tablespoonful can be mixed to the soil of a 10 to 12 inch pot.

It need not be used repeatedly.

In one year, it should not be used more than twice.

You can apply it while preparing soil for seasonal plants, or near the root-ball of the plant during transplanting a plant in the potting mix.

So friends, I told you about the two main organic sources of phosphorus-rich organic fertilizers.

And now is the turn of talking about potassium-rich organic fertilizers.

The mostly used macro nutrient by the plants after Nitrogen and Phosphorus , the one at number three is Potassium.

Although, Potassium doesn’t participate in building up any part of the plant, but it activates almost eighty types of growth related plant-enzymes and increases the ability of plants to regulate the use of water.

This brings improvements in plants and the yield of the plants, i.e., size, shape, color and tastes of the flowers, fruits and seeds; increases immunity towards the diseases and pest attacks; increases plants ability to withstand extreme cold and hot climatic conditions and also increases tolerance to drought.

This means to say that potassium improves all kinds of quality of the plants and for this reason, potassium is often known also as the quality element.

Due to deficiency of potassium, there is a wilting in the edges of the leaves, a curling in the top edges and yellowing in the middle part of the leaves.

Besides this, the roots stop developing, plants show stunted growth and the quality of fruits and seeds decreases.

Normally, all kind of plants need potassium at every stage of growth, but one that produces flowers, fruits and seeds, need extra potassium starting from the production of flowers through to the maturity of fruits or seeds.

So, let me tell you about some of the potassium-rich organic fertilizers.

Friends, in my list of potassium-rich organic fertilizers, the first one is seaweed extract.

It is also known as the Kelp extract, or Kelp fertilizer.

I use one from IFFCO brand, named as Sagarika.

There are different brands of seaweed extract easily available in the market.

Besides liquid, it is also available in granular form.

Seaweeds are about more than 12,000 different variety of algae found in the sea which is not only used as human food, medicines, herbs and as cosmetics, but also as the plant fertilizers.

It contains nitrogen upto 1%, phosphorus up to 1/2% and potassium up to 2% including more than 70 types of minerals, vitamins, enzymes and hormones.

That means, it is a complete fertilizer which is totally safe and fully organic.

At a rate of 2 to 3 ml of it, diluted with one liter of water, spray over the plants and also add to the soil.

You can repeat it at an interval of 3 to 4 weeks.

Although this fertilizer doesn’t have high percentage of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, but due to the presence of many other nutrients, it can be applied starting from the initial growth of the plants through to the maturity of plants, that is at every stage, can be applied successfully.

Types of Nitrogen Fertilizers

Of the fundamental supplements, nitrogen is the most normally applied.

We have a few source alternatives with regards to the two property holders and ag makers, and there’s frequently a few inquiries with regards to what are the various sources and what are the significance in the various attributes?

Along these lines, one of the most regularly sold wellsprings of nitrogen in Oklahoma is anhydrous alkali.

Anhydrous alkali is a gas structure with 82 percent nitrogen for each pound.

So every 100 pounds of anhydrous alkali, we will have 82 pounds of nitrogen.

It goes in the dirt as a gas, and it promptly responds with H2O, any water into the dirt, and it’s going to for NH4 and clutch the dirt molecule.

At that point we have urea. Urea is our number two and in some cases number one compost source, it is by a wide margin the best dry source.

Urea is 46 percent nitrogen.

It’s well known in light of the fact that An, it has the most noteworthy convergence of nitrogen of a dry item and it’s genuinely sheltered.

So urea comes in with (NH2)2CO, it’s applied in the dirt, it gets wet, urease, a protein, will follow up on these particles here, sever the CO and go NH2 and transform that into NH3, which at that point responds with water and goes to NH4.

The test with urea, while it’s an extremely protected and simple to store dry item, if urea isn’t joined into the dirt by means of culturing or water system, there’s high likelihood that with a tad of dampness, this NH3 can really be lost in the earth.

In this way, in horticulture and different viewpoints, we’re constantly worried about nitrogen misfortunes from the use of urea in the event that we don’t get a decent fuse.

Another more uncommon wellspring of nitrogen is the ammonium sulfate, and this is usually applied with urea when there is a sulfur request.

For what reason is it just not applied exclusively?

Since there’s just 21 percent nitrogen, in any case, ammonium sulfate is an entirely steady source, however it has the most elevated acidifying response rate, when contrasted with some other nitrogen source in light of the fact that our hotspot for ammonium sulfate when we apply straightforwardly as an ammonium, returns to our acidifying factors, an ammonium changes over and delivers more hydrogen that some other of these sources that begin as a HN3.

Thus, our most acidifying compost for nitrogen is ammonium sulfate.

There are additionally different sources, for example, UAN.

Along these lines, UAN represents urea ammonium nitrate.

UAN is fluid manure source, so it comes in either as a 32 percent nitrogen or 28 percent nitrogen with no different supplements.

We’ll frequently utilize them as top dress, or showered on as top dress, or infused into the dirt.

It is half urea, half ammonium nitrate, mixed in and watered down.

These are our essential nitrogen containing manures that we would use across Oklahoma in farming and in the nursery.

Meaning of the Numbers on the Fertilizer Package

For a strong and healthy yard, you’ll need to apply fertilizer throughout the year.

But one of the most common questions asked is “what did the numbers on the front of the bag mean?” And this is a good question, so I’ll

show you what the numbers stand for and what they mean for you and your lawn.

So you’ve probably noticed that bag after bag of fertilizer have those numbers somewhere on the bag.

So what are they?

These numbers represent the fertilizer’s guaranteed analysis; it gives you the percentage of three key elements by weight in the bag.

These numbers are also referred to as the NPK ratio.

The first number is Nitrogen. Nitrogen!

The second number is Phosphorus. Phosphorus!

And the third number: Potassium!

These three essential ingredients are used in all fertilizers.

It gets the term NPK ratio from each element’s symbol on the periodic table.

And will always be arranged in that order. So what does that really mean for you?

Well it’s important to note that each element serves a specific function for your lawn or your ornamental plants.

The nitrogen is responsible for the greening of the plant and the shoot growth.

If you’ve seen a neighbor’s lawn looking really green, he’s probably using something with high nitrogen.

The phosphorus helps with root growth and the establishment of new plants.

So say you’ve just planted a new ornamental bush.

Well you would want something that’s high in the middle number or phosphorous to help the roots take hold.

And potassium is for the overall health and strength of the plant.

Potassium will help toughen up the plant cells and water absorption to keep your lawn or plants strong.

When picking out a fertilizer for your lawn, it’s important to know what your lawn needs or which nutrients it’s lacking.

It’s generally recommended that you perform a soil test every year to see what your turf might need.

And keep in mind that regional climates, time of year, and grass type will all factor into what type of fertilizer that you will need.

So for instance, in this bag of our Summer

Pro Grow fertilizer, we have 19 percent nitrogen, 4 percent phosphorus, and 10 percent potassium in a 50-pound bag.

This ratio is great for warm season grasses like

St. Augustine during the summertime.

Or say you’re in California or Georgia and you have a fescue lawn.

Then you’re probably going to want something high in nitrogen such as our 34 -3 -3.

Or maybe you’re going to do an application of fertilizer during the Fall.

Then you’re gonna want something high in phosphorus because it’s gonna nourish the turf as it goes dormant.

What you don’t want to use is a fertilizer high in nitrogen because I could just end up feeding fungus like brown patch or weeds like clover .

And these are some examples of things to consider when you’re picking a fertilizer out for your own lawn.

And the good news is that most fertilizer labels will give you the information on what you’ll need for your lawn.

It will also tell you how much fertilizer you will need to apply to get one pound of nitrogen per thousand square feet.

This bit of info will also help you calculate how much fertilizer you’re going to need depending on how many applications you’re gonna make throughout the year.

So remember always check that label.

This should be a good launching point for knowing and deciding what type of fertilizers you’re going to need for your lawn.

But remember lawn care is more than just putting down fertilizers; you’re also gonna have to combat weed growth with pre and post emergent weed killers.