Re: [gardeners] pine needles

Kay Lancaster (
Thu, 9 Apr 1998 03:03:44 -0700 (PDT)

On Thu, 9 Apr 1998, penny x stamm wrote:

> Next fall perhaps I can get him to pick them up with the 
> bagging mower. Some people say to run leaves thru the
> mower twice, but we have not done that. I guess Jimmie 
> can't face the extra labor.....  Should we mow up the pine
> needles twice...???   

Pine straw (needles) is often prized for mulch or for incorporation
into clay soil because it doesn't break down readily.  You might want
to start a pile of just pine needles + manure for long term composting.

As far as mowing leaves to shred them, you might want to be a bit careful
unless you're using a mower designed for mulching-- with the mowers that
are designed to discharge grass clippings, mowing over the piles can put
very fine bits of grass (or leaves, or pine straw) up into the engine,
costing you $$$ in repairs. 

Kay Lancaster
just west of Portland, OR; USDA zone 8 (polarfleece)