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Which lawn mower should you get? It depends on your needs. Leaving grass clippings is beneficial for your lawn. When the grass clippings decompose, they contribute enough nitrogen and organic matter. Using a lawn mower with no bag is your best choice. However, you have to make sure that your unraked clippings are the right size. Otherwise, using a lawnmower with the bag is the best choice for your lawn.
Leaving grass clippings is one of the best ways to recycle nutrients back into the lawn. Grass clippings encourage microorganisms and earthworms that break them down easily and quickly. It contains around 4% nitrogen, which promotes green growth. When you leave grass clippings in place, you’re mainly feeding the grass with 25% of its yearly nitrogen needs. This can help you save money on nitrogen fertilizer. Grass clippings can also be used as natural mulch, which helps contain soil moisture to prevent the lawn from experiencing drought stress.
Thatch buildup is caused by roots, shoots, and grass stems. Grass clippings don’t promote thatch. Clippings consist of around 75% water, so it decomposes fast and adds nutrients to the soil at the same time. You don’t need to worry about any visible residue as well. Avoid mowing when the grass is wet and cutting off more than 1/3 of the grass blade. This is less stressful on the lawn and reduces the size of the grass clippings.
Leave the grass at 2 ½” to 3″ tall as this is the right height for maximum nutrient processing. Don’t allow the grass to grow more than 4 ½” tall before mowing it. You should also mow the lawn when it is dry to prevent the grass clippings from matting and blocking water and sunlight from the soil. If the grass clippings are long and you can’t be bothered to bag them, you can mow over the clippings after mowing the lawn to keep your turf oxygenated.
When to Use a Lawn Mower with No Bag
The best time to use a lawnmower with no bag is when the grass is extremely overgrown. Grass clippings can be added to the compost pile as a nitrogen booster. You can let the clippings decompose with the leaves, kitchen waste and other compost materials for two weeks to 4 months. Turn the materials regularly and keep them damp to expedite the decomposition process. By following these tips, you finish your mowing session a lot faster than before as well as add organic nutrients to the lawn. You can also avoid adding more waste to the landfills and still maintain a clean and well-maintained lawn. This is less stressful on your part as well. You don’t need to worry about bagging and getting rid of the grass clippings once you are done mowing the lawn.
When to Use a Lawn Mower with Bag
If you want to keep your lawn clean at all times or you don’t want to see any clippings after mowing the lawn, you should consider getting a mower with a bag.
You should also consider several factors when buying a lawnmower. One of these is your landscape needs. Consider the slope and size of the yard. You may want the lawn mower to have a washout port as well. You can connect a hose to the washout port to make it easier to remove clippings underneath the mower deck. Models that feature a collapsing or folding handle don’t require a lot of storage space. Electric mowers can be switched on with a single push of a button. This eliminates the inconvenience and stress of pull-starting the engine.
Some models are equipped with special engine seals that allow you to store the mower in an upright position without the risk of gas or oil leaking out. You should get a lawn mower with uniform wheels as this model is easier to maneuver than options with larger rear wheels.
If you’re willing to spend more, you can find a lawn mower with more features. However, it is best that you get a mower that’s equipped with the features you need. There are cordless electric models with a removable battery. This option is quite handy as the battery will last longer if left within a specific temperature range. It is also easier to store the battery inside, especially when there’s a space to store the lawn mower indoors.
You can find lawn mowers with a blade-brake clutch that stops the blade when the handlebar is released. With this feature, there’s no need to restart the engine to move rocks, toy or branches or to empty a bag packed with grass clippings. You may also want your lawn mower to have a one-lever height adjustment. This feature allows you to lower or raise the mowing deck at once. Models that don’t have such feature require you to adjust the four wheels individually.
Regardless of your choice, make sure to pick a lawn mower that fits your needs and budget.