Should I Rake, Mulch or Leave the Leaves?

We’ve enjoyed a beautiful fall, but one look at the trees – or your lawn – will tell you that it is quickly coming to an end. The leaves are falling, more than likely into your lawn!

It can feel like an endless chore – you rake the leaves one day, only to have your lawn covered with leaves again by the next day. What should you do with the leaves – leave them on the lawn or remove them all before winter? Before you pull out the rake and leaf blower, here are some things to consider.

In some respects, it is a matter of preference. If you prefer a clean lawn with no leaves, removing leaves on a regular basis is recommended. Don’t let them pile up to thick or the job is more difficult. A think layer of leaves can become wet after a rain and can form a mat that becomes impenetrable which can suffocate the grass and breed mold and fungus.

Dry leaves can be mowed into tiny pieces with your lawn mower and left on the lawn. Leaves can serve as mulch for trees, shrubs and gardens, and if left on the lawn they may actually help impede weed growth in your lawn.

leaves front

If you don’t want to rake, pull out the mower. Regular mowing with the bag attached to the mower will make the task more manageable and prevent opportunities for the leaves to become wet from rain or morning dew. If you are going to mow instead of rake, don’t let the leaves pile up too much or they will clog the mower.

Before you get rid of all the leaves, consider this – fill your flower beds with leaves, they will decompose over winter and act as a fertilizer for your perennials. And it will save you a little bit of time raking and bagging leaves now!

It won’t be long before freezing winter weather is here, so get out there now and enjoy the beautiful weather – it makes the raking, mulching or mowing the leaves more enjoyable. Remember to call the experts at Turf Care now if you would like our help with lawn maintenance in the spring.