Clearing the leaves is a lot of work, and sort of counterproductive and wasteful -- it'd just mean I needed more bought mulch for the year. But if I start putting down new mulch now, I'm worried I'll end up squishing the tiny little bulbs that are just coming up. I suspect I should just wait a few weeks 'til the tiny bulbs are done, trying to enjoy the subtle effect of them against the dried leaves this spring. And when the daffodils and tulips are shooting up tall, I can spread dark mulch around them. But would like the thoughts of other gardeners on this!
(Am if I'm just being ridiculous, feel free to tell me that too... :-) I'm not sure why I'm obsessing about this so much. But the spring garden really is my favorite, and I want it to look its best!)