Leave Those Leaves: The National Wildlife Federation Says Leaves Help Create A Healthy Ecosystem

If you're not a fan of raking all those fallen leaves this time of year, we now have the perfect excuse to skip that chore. 

The National Wildlife Foundation says leaving the leaves right where they've fallen helps the local ecosystems as well as the planet. 

If you are concerned about the health of your lawn, however, the NWF says mulching the leaves will help naturally fertilize your lawn, but if that isn't the look you're going for either, you can bag the mulched leaves and then dump them in your garden beds. It will fertilize your plants and help keep weeds at bay, too.

Small creatures eat the crumbled leaves, and birds use them to make nests, while insects find refuge in them including caterpillars. 

Not raking your leaves also helps in reducing greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. Nearly 33 million tons of leaf waste end up in landfills each year. This accounts for around 13% of solid waste in the US alone. When the leaves are piled in a landfill and don't have oxygen exposure, they turn into methane gas, which heats up our planet. 

Moral of the story: leave your leaves. The earth will thank you for it.

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