When it comes to raking leaves, pretty much everyone at one point or another in their life has asked – perhaps with a bit of a whine in their voice – “Do I have to?”
Allowing Percolation of Nutrients
It’s important to realize that your lawn is a plant, so it needs what you’d expect any plant to need. In order to be able to grow (or, as the weather turns cooler, prepare to go into winter hibernation), plants need sunlight, air, and water. A thick layer of leaves will prevent your grass from getting these necessary components. That’s why raking leaves is an essential chore in the fall.
Raking Leaves Help Prevent Diseases
Moreover, matted-down leaves on your lawn can keep new grass blades from growing come spring. Matted leaves can cause your yard to contract diseases or invite pests. A bit of preventative work raking leaves is worth not having to cure any of these problems. These large leaves won’t be able to properly break down and decompose by the time spring rolls around.
Alternatives to Raking Leaves
However, while it is necessary to deal with your leaves, you might not necessarily have to rake them. This is happy news for your blistered hands! Instead, you can run your mower over the leaves, mulching them into tiny pieces. (But be sure to remove the sticks and twigs first!) These smaller pieces can fall between the blades of grass. Meaning you can let these bits of leaves fall back onto your lawn to serve as fertilizer and mulch. This is very similar to leaving grass clippings on your property. Otherwise, you can use the bag attachment on your mower. Once you’ve collected them, you can put the mulched leaves into your garden or compost bin.