We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
In South Texas we get leaves year 'round from the Live Oaks, who give a bonus mess of pollen and catkin* in the early spring. Cedar elm and red oak usually hold on until the first week of December, and then literally blanket the ground, so you gotta rake 'em up quick.
A lawn IS an unnatural garden, and I wish our culture had picked something else to do with the areas around our houses. But other things look like crap next to it, so we have painted ourselves into a corner in any place that thinks of itself as a "neighborhood." In less-dense places more natural landscapes can look okay, and we might gradually move in that direction.
Assistant Village Idiot
Many neighborhood (=non-back-yard) spaces can be very successfully converted to groundcover or low shrub plantings. They look great - providing seasonal flower/fruit interest, depending on what's planted - and are MUCH more low maintenance than lawns.
Many American suburbs should rethink the obligation (which is sometimes anchored in law) to have a big, largely unused, front lawn.
We have some lawn but lots of trees and thicket too. This time of year, the blower comes out and the leaves get blown back into the trees and jaupon thickets - these do a pretty good job of retaining the leaves there, where they decompose and mulch.
I over-seed the lawn with rye this time of year - it puts nitrogen back into the soil for next year's grass, and the long, bright green rye grass looks great in wintertime - plus the deer like to chomp on it - and there's not much else that's green that time of year, for their nutrition.
Early October, we rake up the leaves and place them into seasonal bags - usually orange pumpkins but this year white ghosts. We also rake a lot under the hedge as that's where the ladybugs like to hibernate.
Here is the arid mideast, a lawn is a luxury - and an uphill battle. Despite the mild climate there is only one golf course in Israel, and all the tennis courts are clay.
Fake lawn products have largely taken over the market - including most sports fields.
Home lots are much smaller here, with lotsa semi-detached housing, and the better astroturfs produce a convincing handkerchief-sized lawn in these small gardens - usually alongside a more heavily used patio or deck.