Mulching isn’t possible with all lawnmowers. Mulching mowers, on the other hand, use curved blades and a domed cutting deck to cut, suspend and recut grass into small bits that are dropped on the lawn, whereas traditional mowers use flat blades that only cut once. To convert your mower to mulch, you’ll need a specific kit.
What Is the Difference Between a Regular and Mulching Mower?
The form of the mower’s body and the blade are the two main differences between a standard lawnmower and a mulching mower.
Regular lawn mowers cut grass with a relatively flat blade. The blade tosses the grass fragments out of the mower and onto the lawn or into a bag once it’s been cut.
Lawn experts like regular lawn mowers because they can utilize fast-moving mowers and complete the work as quickly as possible.
What Makes the Mulching Mower Unique?
A mulching lawnmower also chops the grass, but instead of being thrown out right away, the clippings are re-circulated multiple times around a curved blade inside the mower’s body.
Mulching lawnmowers have a broad, high-domed deck that helps to collect grass clippings. Baffles are even integrated into the deck of certain mulching mowers.
What Does the Mulching Mower Blade Look Like?
A mulching lawn mower not only has a distinct form but also has a different blade. A mulching blade has a bigger cutting surface and is curved. The blade’s design helps to propel the clippings up into the domed deck, where they are chopped up by the extra cutting surfaces as the grass falls back down.
How Does the Mulching Mower Work?
The grass is dangled, cut, dandled, cut, then cut again until the bits are so small that they fall out into the lawn. When the pieces eventually fall to the ground, they are incredibly little – perhaps an inch in diameter or less.
This little size is ideal for mulching. The grass is largely made up of water. The little fragments of grass will disintegrate back into the lawn in a few days during the summer.
Is a Mulching Lawn Mower Required?
These days, we’re all attempting to aid our planet in modest ways daily. Mulching grass cuttings is one of the items on that list. Grasscycling is the process of mulching grass clippings.
Grasscycling is beneficial to both your grass and the environment by lowering landfill volume. Yard wastes such as grass clippings and leaves are prohibited from being disposed of in landfills in several areas in the United States.
Mulching mowers are effective. Sure, you’ll have to walk a little more slowly behind a mulching mower. A mulching lawnmower, on the other hand, may help you save time when it comes to caring for your lawn if you have a good spread of healthy grass.
Raking isn’t necessary with a mulching mower. There’s no need to stop 10 times to bag clippings. You won’t have to deal with large heaps of grass. There will be no walking back and forth to fertilize twice a year, if not more.
Is it possible to convert my lawnmower into a mulching mower?
With simply a blade replacement or a conversion kit, several kinds of conventional mowers may be converted to mulching mowers. They won’t have the domed deck of a mulching mower, but they’ll perform just fine mulching.
First, check to see if your mower can function securely without a bag. Not everyone is capable. Consult your owner’s handbook or contact your equipment’s manufacturer.
Many manufacturers sell a conversion kit that lets you go from a regular (also known as high lift or 2-in-1) to mulching (sometimes known as 3-in-1) blade. Because not all blades are universal, do some research on your specific mower manufacturer.
Keeping mower blades sharp is generally a good idea, but it’s especially important with mulching blades. Experts recommend sharpening blades at least once a year or every 25 hours of use.
When Does Mulching Not Work?
Mulching, on the other hand, may not always be effective.
If you live in a rainy region and just have to mow, you may need to bag your clippings if you don’t get a dry time. If your lawn is excessively damp, the grass cuttings may bunch up and pile up instead of being scattered out. Long, clumped clippings left on your lawn might suffocate it.
When your lawn has a disease like a leaf spot, rust, or dollar spot, it’s best to bag your clippings. By bagging the unhealthy cuttings, you can get them out of there. After that, go after the sick parts.
What Are Mulching’s Advantages?
Grasscycling aids in the development of a healthy lawn. Mulch enriches depleted soils with organic materials. Mulch can enhance the texture of sandy or clayey soil.
Grass clippings include the same compounds found in fertilizers: phosphorous, nitrogen, and potassium. According to experts, clippings might minimize or eliminate the demand for fertilizer. If you’ve fertilized, make sure to mulch rather than bag the cuttings (with the expensive fertilizer).
What Are the Negative Consequences of Mulching?
Mulching, according to some experts, may actually harm rather than benefit a failing lawn with many bare patches. Mulch can be used to conceal troublesome areas. Experts advise putting the trimmings in a bag and focusing on boosting the lawn’s health.
If your lawn contains infected spots, you should bag your clippings to avoid spreading the illness via the mulching process. If you have a habit of putting off mowing until the last minute and your grass is tall, bagging instead of mulching can be a better option. A mulching mower has a hard time processing overgrown grass.
The blade will slow down and tear the tall grass rather than cut it. Large clumps of long grass can suffocate your yard.
Mulching Your Lawn
Mulching lawnmowers recirculate clippings with a lot of horsepowers. When the grass is wet, a mulching lawnmower may not cut well and may be sluggish. You may need to bag your clippings if you live in a moist climate or during a rainy season.
If you’re beginning your grass from seed, some people propose bagging. Mulch – even little mulch – on top of new seedlings may be too much for them to handle.
Hi, I’m John Stephens, chief editor and writer for Totalgardener.com. I’ve been gardening and raising animals for over 15 years starting with a small backyard plot in Northern Virginia where I grew corn, potatoes, squash, and using a high mulch technique called the Ruth Stout Method. I also raised ducks and small mammals for meat and eggs in a movable pen similar to the ones used by Joel Salatin. I later moved to Colorado where I experimented with growing greens using aquaponics inside. I eventually added a microgreens setup and home sprouting operation. I’m excited to share everything I’ve learned plus more from the other local gardening and animal raising experts I know.