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My neighborhood is 40 years old. I'm planning to only compost my backyard trees leaves. My front yard has a huge maple infected with scale and aphids, and has iron deficiency. The aphids suck moisture from the leaves so they're light green/yellow. Ants protect the aphids. I'm not planning to compost those leaves because I don't want aphids and scale in my compost piles.

A local garden columnist said he collects his neighbors' leaf bags every fall and mulches them in his garden and his compost piles. I like the idea of getting all those leaves, but I'm leery of getting leaves from diseased or bad insect-infested trees.

Should I or shouldn't I take a chance on using my neighbors' leaves?

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