Leaf litter question

Sheldon13

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 31, 2019
Messages
25
I'm looking around my yard for the few maple leaves that fall into my yard form a neighbor's tree and I realize I may need to find other options. I just moved into my home a month ago so I have not identified all trees/plants on the property yet. I did identify one though, that seems to leave a love of leaves on the ground. Its a hibiscus bush called Rose of Sharon. Does anyone know if hibiscus leaves are safe to use for leaf litter?
 

moricollins

Arachno search engine
Old Timer
Joined
Nov 15, 2003
Messages
2,957
What are you planning to use the leaf litter for?
Are there oak trees near you? Magnolia trees? Those seem to be among the favorite leaf litter varieties
 

Sheldon13

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 31, 2019
Messages
25
Oh sorry, yeah I guess that information would help.

I have:
Isopods (dwarf white, orange porcellionides pruinosis, wild armadillidium)
Millipedes (bumblebee, scarlet)

Leaf available:
Magnolia-plentiful (too hard for isopods but ok for millis)
Hibiscus-plentiful (not sure of safety)
Pecan-moderate (not sure of safety)
Maple-only a few
Oak-rare
Several other types of trees in and around my back yard that I haven’t identified yet so I don’t feel safe using the leaf litter from them yet
 

chanda

Arachnoking
Old Timer
Joined
Jun 27, 2010
Messages
2,002
Are you certain that your neighbor does not spray his tree or treat it with systemic insecticides? If he does, then the leaves will not be safe to use with your pets. The same holds true for the trees on your own property if the previous owners might have sprayed or treated their trees and shrubs for bugs. Some of the systemic treatments can last for months - even up to a year.
 

Sheldon13

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 31, 2019
Messages
25
Well, Honestly no I'm note sure. I do boil all of the leaves though before use. Wouldn't that get rid of any cides?
 

Aquarimax

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2014
Messages
1,057
Oh sorry, yeah I guess that information would help.

I have:
Isopods (dwarf white, orange porcellionides pruinosis, wild armadillidium)
Millipedes (bumblebee, scarlet)

Leaf available:
Magnolia-plentiful (too hard for isopods but ok for millis)
Hibiscus-plentiful (not sure of safety)
Pecan-moderate (not sure of safety)
Maple-only a few
Oak-rare
Several other types of trees in and around my back yard that I haven’t identified yet so I don’t feel safe using the leaf litter from them yet
One thing to keep in mind is that magnolia leaves will eventually soften enough for isopods to eat. I offer my isopods magnolia, and though it takes a while, they eventually decay and soften to the point that the isopods eat them.
 

Sheldon13

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 31, 2019
Messages
25
One thing to keep in mind is that magnolia leaves will eventually soften enough for isopods to eat. I offer my isopods magnolia, and though it takes a while, they eventually decay and soften to the point that the isopods eat them.
Is there a way to speed up the decay? Do you soak them in water or something?
 

Feral

Arachnobaron
Active Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2019
Messages
408
For what it's worth...
I don't know about Isopoda, but for humans I know Rose of Sharon flowers are edible (So pretty in salads! But they're always filled with ants and teeny slugs though, so wash thoroughly) and the leaves and/flowers can be made into tea (Yum! Tastes just like hibiscus tea to me. The purple flowers make beautiful bright pink tea!).
If it were me, and as long as I was certain I was correctly identifying the plant in question, and there were no chemicals anywhere near the plants ever, then I would feel reasonably confident trying them with my own aquatic shrimp and snails. (Or similarly Isopoda in your case, but I don't have them.)
But just know that I've never actually done it or heard of it, and these are just my opinions.
 

SamanthaMarikian

Arachnoknight
Active Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2019
Messages
221
With magnolia because theyre hard leaves i crumple them up n mix them in the substrate for my isopods that favor leaves. Ive never tried using hibiscus leaves but i grow them for my tortoise so i might try it and tell you guys how it goes.
 

pancakesfordinner

Arachnopeon
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
8
I'd like to know about hibiscus too. I have some in my yard and the grasshoppers and mealy bugs love them, at least.
 
Top