Leaving a few leaves on your lawn will help the ecosystem and your soil: Nature Conservancy of Canada

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You can leave a light layer of leaves on your lawn.

That’s according to the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) and NCC ecologist and national conservation science manager Samantha Knight says it will actually help the ecosystem.

“The leaves are actually important wintering habitat for many animals such as toads, frogs, moths and butterflies, for example,” Knight explained. “So these sheets provide an insulating blanket, protecting these animals from the cold and temperature fluctuations that occur during the winter season. “

She says the leaf layer will help the soil as well.

“This is actually going to decompose, just like the leaves in the forest,” Knight said. “So you can consider these leaves without any fertilizer or nutrients for your lawn. These sheets will be [also] remove the weeds in your lawn in the fall and spring, but you don’t want to leave too thick a layer as it can be damaging.

She also says that it helps not to clean your garden at the end of the season and leave it until spring.

Knight says birds will benefit from any fruits and seeds left on the flowers, while plant stems and dead branches provide wintering habitat for many species as well.

Conservation also emphasizes the importance of backyard biodiversity, as about 80 percent of Canadians live in cities and towns.

“It’s about the collective action and the little conservation acts that we can take in our own backyards that really make a difference,” added Knight.

She stressed that it is important to make sure that the storm sewers or gutters near your home are free of leaves.

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