Raking those Fall Leaves? …
A lot of people go to the trouble and effort of raking up leaves when they fall onto the lawn grass. There’s nothing wrong with that except you need to exert good physical work and risk a sore back; and then need to decide what to do with the raked up leaves. If you’ve got a good sized yard, this may take some time which you could otherwise be spending on other necessary activities.
Do this instead…
Use your lawn mower and mulch the leaves into the lawn. Not only does it save time and energy but it also feeds the grass. I do this every year as our lawn is 1.25 acres and we have many leafy trees! If you’ve got a fantastic mulching mower complete with a mulching kit you’ve got exactly what you need. If your mower does not currently mulch, you might be able to purchase a mulching kit for it from the manufacturer or Amazon or eBay.
Can be fun!
Saves you time!
Saves aches and pains!
Feeds the lawn!
Makes the lawn look neat!
Timing is key! (grass not too tall/not too wet)
Allow grass to grow to 4-6 inches tall
Use mower with mulching kit
Use fresh gasoline (unless utilizing electric mower)
Raise mower deck to highest setting
Mow in Clockwise Direction
Work from the outside in
Timing is key.
Stop your regular lawn mowing about the time the leaves just start to fall off the trees. Allow the grass to grow till it’s approx. 4-6 inches tall. Taller grass better catches the leaves, prevents the wind from blowing them around and holds them in place so the mower blades don’t readily blow them out of the way as you mulch. A couple dry days or several days (better yet) is the perfect time to mulch. It is OK if the leaves are moist as damp leaves don’t blow away so easily.
Raise the mower deck to the highest setting before starting.
It may take a couple of passes to mulch the leaves in to your liking.
Lawn mowers usually discharge into the right with the blades spinning in clockwise direction. Therefore, you want to mow in a circular clockwise direction working from the outside in. This will help redirect loose leaves to the taller uncut grass.
If leaves pile up towards the front or behind the front wheels, stop, drive in reverse for a few feet and then proceed forward again carrying 1/2 a dip into the leaves rather than a complete cutting width. With a little practice you will get into a groove and the job should go fairly smooth.
When mulching is completed…
What I like to do is momentarily park my Craftsman riding mower beside my yard debris burn pile, disengage the blades and eliminate the discharge chute cover. I clean off the grass and leaves from the top and underside of the mower deck (you do not want damp material sitting on there to cause rust). With the discharge chute off, I re-engage the mower blades and drive around for a couple of minutes (going over any areas that need a fast touch-up) as this will help to dry out the mower deck before putting it away.