Leaf Shredder: Your Vital Tool for the Best Compost and Mulch

After autumn there are piles and piles of leaves on the roadside. For a lot of city folks or even suburban people, these leaves are just waiting to be played in by the local kids or picked up by the garbage collector. You, on the other hand, know better. Why? That is because of the fact you are reading this article means that you are looking for a leaf shredder.

Whether you know what this particular gardening tool does or not, you know that those piles of leaves have a lot of potential. You can transform them into something useful, and in the process you also help with the disposition of these fallen leaves. As such, we will discuss essential facts about this unique shredding tool. We will also give you some helpful tips on what to look for when looking to purchase the best leaf shredder. Lastly, we will talk about some of the final end products and advantages of the shredded leaves and sticks.

Leaf Shredder: What is it?

This very powerful tool can shred and mulch leaves, small sticks. Well, that is a surprise, is it not? But sarcasm aside, what happens after is what’s most interesting. This is one of the best gardening tools because it can make and shred up the by-products of leaves into a very useful mulch and fertilizer, which is very vital to recycling.

So, what happens? You chuck in the dried leaves and sticks into the shute. It spins at high-speed levels while the impeller and metal blades grind and mulch the leaves and debris into fine leaf granules. This can also be done by a leaf mulcher with a lawnmower; however, the result is not as fine. The shredded leaves are the ones that you can easily make into useful products around your yard and garden.

Types Based on Power Source

This useful yard tool is divided into three types based on its source of power. The first one is the electric style where you have a cord, and you plug it in. These are the most common and work very well. The second one is a gas shredder. This one can process a lot of leaves at a given time, but it is not the most environmentally friendly. Finally, the last one is a battery powered leaf shredder. For this smaller leaf blower type, a lot of companies are starting to develop battery shredders that are as strong as the gas powered ones.

Tips and Tricks to Find the Best Leaf Shredder 

If it is your first time to consider buying one, you might be in for a surprise because they have a lot of high quality designs and features. So, here is a simple guide to what you should look out for:

  • Main use: You should determine what you are going to use it for. Is it just for disposal? Or would you like to make compost? For compost, you should use a heavy-duty model because you will use it a lot. Having your own is convenient to clean up the yard throughout the year. Springtime for small sticks and branches that had fallen over the winter. Summertime for anytime after storms cause more to fall and of course the best time during and after the leaves have dropped from the trees.
  • Capacity and power: Of course, if you have a large backyard, it is necessary that you get a leaf shredder that has a large capacity to save you time and effort. This type of machinery is very powerful so you must use extreme caution when operating one.
  • Convenience: Would you like the one with wheels? Or something that you can just easily carry to and from the storage area? This will solely depend on personal preference, but it is suggested that you get something that you can move around quickly and easily. Apart from added features like wheels, this is also where the weight of the product comes into play. Larger models can be very heavy move around.
  • Opening: If you plan on shredding twigs along with the leaves, you should get one that has a bigger diameter chute opening at the top. Always be careful not to put in anything larger that the manufacturer recommends.
  • Safety features: Of course, you would not want to cause any personal injury. It’s best to use leaf scoops to pick up any material you plan to put into the shredder. Choose a product model that has a safety lock feature or even a top cover for the best protection.
  • Material to be shredded: It is inevitable that there will come a time that you have to shred wet material. Therefore, your model should also be capable of processing those.
  • Noise Level: This depends on the area where you live. If you live in a neighborhood where you are so close to your neighbors, you should get something that works quietly, so as not to disturb other people. While in operation, always wear proper ear plugs to protect your hearing.
  • Your knowledge: You should also gauge yourself if you are physically capable of properly using one. There will be times when things get stuck, and you should never stick your hands in there.
  • Proper Clothing: Always tuck in any and all shirts, coats or anything loose or sticking out while using one. These can get caught by a stick while being drawn-in.
  • Safety Glasses and Protective Gear: You should always wear safety glasses when using a leaf blower or any power tool. A leaf shredder and leaf blowers create a lot of flying debris that can cause injury so you need to protect your eyes at all times.

Shredded Leaves: What to Do with Them?

 

Leaf Shredder: Your Vital Tool for the Best Compost and Mulch

 

Here are some very good advantages and uses of the shredded leaves:

  • Fertilizer: You can just scatter them on top of grass and soil, or put them in your plant pots.
  • Mulch: This is a mixture of bark, leaves, or compost that you can attach to plants to enrich them or just put in with the soil to insulate it.
  • Compost: This is your fertilizer in steroids, which is commonly a blend of leaves, manure, wood, etc. Just like a wood shredder, a shredder for leaves can also process small parts of the wood to mix in your compost.
  • Nutrient source for plants: Let us briefly talk about the use of these leaves as nutrients that can be used for perennial gardens. These are for the leaves that you grind up early on, meaning they are newly-fallen leaves. These are perfect to use for perennials beds because they still have a lot of nutrients within them and the plants can easily absorb those.
  • Winter mulch: There is also a thing called winter mulch which is compatible with shrubs, roses, and perennials. When you realize that the mulch that you produced is of the fluffy kind, you can use this to wrap the stems of your plants to insulate them to brave the low temperatures of winter. Or you can just scatter them near the roots of your plants.

Final Notes

There are many uses and advantages to shredding those fallen leaves. Why pay for compost, mulch or even fertilizer when you easily can make your own. Finding the best leaf shredder is easy as checking the reviews in our table below. These models can be shipped free to your home.

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

So, what are you waiting for? Give your plants or even just your soil a boost, and start shredding!

You might also like this: Black & Decker BV3100: The Best 3-in-1 Garden Tool!

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