Mulching Grass Clippings
Benefits of Mulching Grass Clippings
Have you ever found yourself wondering why people choose mulching their lawn instead of just discharging or bagging their grass clippings? What are the benefits of mulching your lawn?
There are many benefits to mulching your lawn. There are cost savings, time savings, and benefits that can even make your lawn healthier.
We will discuss the benefits of mulching your lawn and whether or not it is the right choice for your lawn. While there are many undeniable benefits of mulching your lawn, it is not the right choice for every lawn.
What is Mulching?
Mulching your lawn is typically done using a mulching kit, like a Scag Hurricane Mulching System. A mulching kit typically includes a set of mulching blades which are designed to cut and recut your grass into fine particles.
The particles are cut fine enough to decompose in your lawn and do not cause a build up of thatch. A mulch kit also includes a block off plate that prevents the grass from being discharged into the lawn.
And baffles which fit under your mowing deck to direct air flow to direct the grass back into the blades to be cut into those fine particles. To find the right Scag mulching kit, here is our quick reference guide.
Mulch is a Natural Fertilizer
Your grass clippings when cut down small enough to decompose act as a natural fertilizer for your lawn. Grass is high in potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus which are the nutrients your lawn needs.
Now, here is your first money saving opportunity to mulch your lawn. With using the grass that is already there you no longer will need to buy fertilizer because you will be fertilizing your lawn all throughout the mowing season.
The layer of fine mulch will help to retain water in your soil as well. The mulch will act as a sun shade for your grass keeping the soil cooler helping it to retain that moisture.
Saving Time & Reducing Waste
The alternatives to mulching your grass is bagging or side discharging your grass. If you choose to discharge your clippings into your lawn you run the risk of thatch build up.
Thatch is the build up of organic material on your lawn. Many times this occurs when you discharge your clippings and choose not to go behind and rake them up. I am sure you have seen those clumps of grass on a lawn before.
The other option is to bag your clippings. When you bag your clippings you spend time having to stop many times depending on the size of your lawn to empty your bagger.
As you can see, opting for mulching your grass can save you time of going behind and raking up your grass or stopping to empty your bags.
If you are not using your grass clippings for compost where are those clippings ending up? They many times go right to the landfill. According to the Frontier Group in the U.S. 13.3% of all the waste that is discarded is yard waste.
Out of the roughly 2,500 lbs of waste disposed of by each American each year, cutting down that 13.3% can add up quickly.
When Should You Not Mulch?
Mulching your lawn is best done when it is dry. When grass is wet and is cut it has a tendency to bunch up. When your grass bunches up instead of falling down to the soil bed as intended you can get a build up of thatch.
If you are in an area where you have very wet springs with lots of rainfall it may be best to avoid mulching your lawn during this season. Summer and fall tend to be more dry and you will get the best results of mulching then.
If your yard is riddled with weeds it also may be best to hold off on mulching. Cutting up those weeds will spread around weed seed throughout your yard. The goal of mulching your lawn is to allow it to be healthier, not to encourage the growth of weeds.
What About Mulching Leaves?
Mulching leaves has the same benefits as mulching your grass. Leaves are also a free organic matter that can be worked back into the lawn for nourishment.
Most of us use a blower to gather our leaves or rake them into a pile to bag up. While it can be fun jumping in those piles of leaves. Most times when we are done having our fun we bag them up and send them to a landfill.
If you have an abundance of leaves there are other places that they can be used other than in your lawn. Use those leaves in your garden, flower beds, or compost.
And as with grass, you will save yourself the time of raking and bagging them all up!
Mulching is a Benefit
Now, you can see the benefits of mulching in your lawn. Not only are there cost and time saving benefits, but you are utilizing the free organic components to nourish your lawn without making special trips to your landscaping company.
If you do not have a lawn that would be ideal for mulching take a look at taking care of those weeds and getting your yard started on a regular maintenance schedule.
Once you have a good start and have reduced your weeds you can re-evaluate if mulching is right for your lawn. Share a picture of your successful lawn with mulching in the comments below.