Yes, this is quite a mundane topic, but rather relevant this time of year. Of course, it depends on where you live and whether or not actual trees are present; and, naturally, if you are responsible for yard work.
I grew up playing in the leaves, and helping to rake leaves, and just generally enjoying all the colors and shapes and designs. Never gave much thought to actually having to dispose of them.
Then I lived in a few places where there were few trees, or at least they were small enough that they shed perhaps five leaves, total. One house we lived in had one large tree, absolutely glorious in the fall, but I don’t recall raking…or anything else except looking at it.
In Colorado, we had only sagebrush. Oh, sure, people will rave about the aspens “turning”, but we weren’t close enough or high enough for that. We just had sagebrush. A lot.
Texas, of course, has no trees. Well, okay, yes, the “piney woods” area does, but that’s about it. I think all Texas trees are there; the rest don’t even qualify as “trees”, they’re more like overgrown shrubs. Every time we made a trip back to Missouri, I was all “Hey kids, look – TREES!”
One reason I picked this house was because of the trees – two giant oaks in the front yard. No, I was not aware of the darn gumball tree in the back yard. Those balls are a real pain in the patootie.
So fall came. The oaks were beautiful; even the gum tree was gorgeous – especially so, considering the spiky balls all over the place. Then the leaves fell. And fell. Holy moley, there were A LOT.
Now, when I was a kid, I remember everyone raking. Nowadays we have leaf blowers which are, by the way, a lot of fun! And, back then, not everyone raked. I mean, seriously, falling leaves is a pretty natural phenomenon.
The city we live in comes by every couple weeks and vacuums up the leaves. Really. Much better than bagging them all, certainly. But the timing can be difficult.
You don’t know when they’re coming, just the week. You’re supposed to have all the leaves piled at the curb, in a long line, by 8:00 a.m. on Monday. This means that most people have to rake/blow on Sunday, which is fine.
But. Suppose gale force winds crop up Sunday night. Not good. And, of course, since they might not come by on Monday, you also have to do some heavy-duty praying until the leaf vacuum arrives. By the time they come, your nice piles of leaves could well be back in your yard.
Not to mention the street, your neighbors’ yards, or even the next county.
The real heartbreaker is, of course, the leaves remaining on the trees. You can blow a perfectly clean yard one day, and the next morning it’s covered again. And I don’t mean a few scattered leaves, I mean COVERED, as in inches deep. It’s a never-ending battle. And one we don’t think of until fall.
But it still beats those overgrown shrubs down in Texas….