With the arrival of fall comes the always beautiful canopy of colourful leaves. Watching the trees change colour is one of the things that makes this season so amazing. Radiant oranges, deep reds, and bright yellows make for gorgeous natural displays. However, cleaning up all those leaves when they litter your lawn is another matter entirely! Some days, the constant raking just doesn’t feel worth it. At the end of a long day, the question inevitably arises: do I really need to rake my lawn? The answer is a little more complicated than a simple yes or no!
Why do we rake leaves?
There are a few reasons why people choose to rake their leaves. Sometimes, it’s purely a matter of aesthetics: too many leaves can make your lawn look messy and unkempt. From a more practical standpoint, leaves can also damage your lawn if they’re allowed to build up too much. Excessive leaf matter can promote turf damage from critters in the spring, smother growth, and cause snow mold diseases. However, there is still hope! Chances are, you don’t need to rake as often as you think- and there are a few ways to keep your lawn healthy that don’t involve bringing out the rake.
What are my other options?
On to the good news! If only 10-20% of your lawn is covered with leaves, there’s no reason to bother raking them up. This amount of coverage is very unlikely to cause problems. If your lawn has more leaf coverage than that, but just the thought of raking gives you a headache, consider mowing the lawn instead! By running the mower, you can kill two birds with one stone. Mulching the leaves on your lawn with a mower decreases the surface area of leaves, protecting your grass from being smothered. Plus, as a bonus, mulched leaves will turn into a natural fertilizer that is actually great for your lawn!
Unfortunately, if your lawn is close to 100% coverage, mulching your leaves is not a viable option. You can use a rake, blower, or the bagging attachment on your mower to collect the leaves. You can also mulch your leaves once there is a more reasonable amount left on your lawn.