Tree Leaf Composting Calculations

[CORRECTED POST] For a BackToEdenFilm.com gardening enthusiast geek like me, this post by Bev Walker entitled “The Numbers of Leaves” is truly Geek Heaven. I am now in my second year of successful gardening with the BTE (wood chip) method and I am studying ways to collect leaves and twigs more reliably so this is a great article for me.

[PREVIOUS ERRONEOUS VERSION OF POST – DISREGARD – I should have checked this author’s calcs with the scientific literature before posting.  72 tons of leaf fall per year is way, way, way too high.  According to this paper it’s 5400 kg/hectare (4752 lbs/acre)]

For a BackToEdenFilm.com gardening enthusiast geek like me, this post by Bev Walker entitled “The Numbers of Leaves” is truly Geek Heaven. I am now in my second year of successful gardening with the BTE (wood chip) method and I am studying ways to collect leaves and twigs more reliably so this is a great article for me. One big take away I get from this article is that the four neighbors participating in this leaf composting project collecting from their own yards totaling about 1.5 acres of area, end up every Fall with a volume of 7263 cubic yards of leaves every year. They reduce this down with a shredder by a 10:1 ratio giving a pre-compost volume of 726 CY. This calculates out to 109 tons(!) of leaf fall weight every year! This is further reduced during the natural composting process to yield an estimated 98 tons of compost every year. From 1.5 acres. So 72 tons of leaves per acre => 65 tons compost per acre. Wow!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *