One of the most popular features with new lawn mowers is whether or not they can mulch the grass you cut. So what's so great about mulching and why should you get on board with this trend?
What is Mulch?
First, let’s discuss what mulch is.
You're probably familiar with the type of mulch that is put around your flower beds and the bases of trees.
These days, that type of mulch seems to not only be there to be functional, but also to be decorative.
Mulch is a material that you put down to insulate the soil bed of a plant, protect the plant's moisture, and enrich the soil with nutrients (in the case of organic mulch) as it decomposes.
Mulch can be in the form of leaves, bark, peat, or in our case, grass clippings.
Mulched grass is grass clippings that have been cut and re-cut into very small pieces that can easily drop between the grass blades in your lawn to the soil bed below.
There it starts to break down, giving its nutrients back to the soil and back to your yard.
How does mulching occur?
If you want the quick and dirty of mulching your clippings, just rip off your grass bag and mow your grass, letting the discharged cuttings fall on the lawn.
If you have a mulching mower, just set it to mulch and go.
But how does a mulching mower differ from a non-mulching, bag-less mower?
A mulching mower has a mulching blade that attempts to cause clippings to fly upwards into the mowing deck where they will return to the blade to be cut again, over and over.
A mulching mower's deck is also made to not have a discharge location, or, as in many popular mowers, the mulching mower has a cover on the discharge location.
This keeps the clippings inside the mower's deck to get chopped up smaller and smaller.
Since there is all this extra cutting, a mulching mower's blade is usually spinning faster than a normal mower's.
Extra speed and power allow the mower to power through the extra workload, but it means you will also want to monitor your blade’s sharpness.
Keep a sharp mulching blade for optimal performance.
Benefits of Mulching
The major benefit in mulching is that it returns nutrients to your lawn, so your grass can grow healthy and thick.
It also keeps the soil moist and covered to keep the temperature down. You may not need to fertilize as much, since you'll be gaining so much from the mulched clippings.
Mulching with your mower means you don't have to dispose of grass clippings, and you don't have to take time to empty your grass bag.
That's less space in a landfill taken up with cut grass and less money you may have to pay for someone to dispose of your yard waste.
Conclusion & Your Thoughts
So fire up your mulching mower and give your lawn back its nutrients.
If you don't have one, try a new walk behind mower with 3-in-1 capabilities, or purchase a mulching kit for your current mower.
What are your thoughts on mulching? Do you have any good tips?
Let us know and we might include them right below here. Article by David Gottschall. E-mail us at [email protected].