Both have their own perks and caveats. Mulching blades allow you to fertilize the lawn as you go, while side discharge mowing allows for cutting down tall grass and weeds or for mowing wet grass. Mulching blades will work with a side discharge mower, however, so you can have the best of both worlds!
In today’s article we’ll tell you what you need to know about mulching, as well as some tips on efficient side discharge mowing as well as well as the benefits that you realize from both of these popular mowing options. Let’s get started!
Is mulching better for your lawn?
Mulching is great for your lawn! When you leave the finely-chopped clippings of grass in your yard, they will break down into nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium and act as a natural fertilizer for growing a healthy lawn. It’s easy, natural, and promotes vibrant, green grass without having to buy extra fertilizers.
Does mulching make grass thicker?
Yes. As the grass clippings decompose in your lawn, they feed nutrients to the grass that helps it to grow full and thick leaves both quickly and efficiently. All that you have to do is use the mulching setting on your mower and simply let the fine cuttings fall where they may – nature does the rest!
What is the disadvantage of mulching?
The only disadvantages of mulching are that too much mulch can create a have for insects and if the mulch is piled on too thickly then it can starve plants of light and water, at the same time that it is heating up this ground. This is easily avoidable, however, by regularly cutting your lawn and not letting overgrow too much before you do so.
When should you not mulch?
In winter and the very beginning of spring, mulching is not optimal, as the ground is still cold and not conducive for healthy plant growth. Summer is also not a good time, as the ground can be too hot and dry and the mulch is not as helpful at this time.
Will mulch attract termites?
Mulch won’t necessarily attract termites, but if they do discover it then their natural inclination is to tunnel into the cover of the mulch, looking for meals.
If the mulch is not damp, then termites won’t be tempted, but the biggest danger with mulch and termites comes from piling mulch against the siding – if you avoid this, you shouldn’t have to worry overmuch about termites in your mulch.
How often should I mulch my lawn?
Mulch should typically be replaced every year or two, but you can also simply mulch again once you see any signs of erosion in the soil or any discoloration. You’ll definitely want to be sure to mulch once spring has warmed up a bit, as this will make for an excellent kickstart to the growth cycle of the grass in your yard.
Can you put new mulch over old mulch?
You can, you just want to be careful not to overdo it. As a general rule, when your old mulch is down to about 1 inch of thickness, it is okay to add another inch of new mulch on top of it. This will help to ensure that your mulch is actively cycled and present in optimal amounts.
Will mulching blades work with side discharge?
Yes, mulching blades will work with side discharge. Known as ‘3 in 1’ blades, mulching blades are good for mulching, side discharge, and for bagging as well, so installing a mulching kit won’t take away the side-discharge function – it just adds the mulching function.
What is the benefit of side discharge lawn mower?
The main benefit of side discharge mowing is that you can mow continuously and at a faster pace. It is also easier for mowing in wet or tall grass and if you mow carefully to control where the discharge goes, then it’s quite a good way to fertilize your yard.
How do you cut grass with side discharge?
The trick to mowing with a side discharge setting or mower is to mow one strip of grass, followed by turning around at the end of that strip and mowing the next so that it sprays the clippings onto the strip that you mowed first.
This helps to methodically spread the clippings in order to better fertilize your yard and it keeps you from making large, inefficient piles of those clippings.
Does side-discharge cause thatch?
No. Each lawn is a little bit different when it comes to thatch buildup, but the proper use of a side discharge mower or a mulcher is not going to cause a buildup of thatch in your yard. This is because you are only cutting the top 1/3 of the grass as you go, rather than cutting it completely down to the roots.
Is side discharge good for grass?
Yes. Provided that you mow properly, so that you can an even distribution of grass clippings, then side discharge is great for promoting grass growth. If you do not mow properly, however, and end up with piles of over 2 inches, then this can be a problem.
Large piles of clippings can block out water and light, as well as encourage insect, so be sure to distribute the clippings carefully.
Why do lawn mowers have side discharge?
Side discharge has a number of advantages. The blades move quite quickly, providing efficient, even cuts, and the air circulation is superior since the clippings are immediately blown out of the side. This makes it easier to cut tall grass and weeds without worry of the engine choking and it also lets you easily cut wet grass.
Which is better side discharge or rear discharge mower?
When it comes to distributing grass clippings, a rear discharge mower will actually provide a more efficient, spaced spread then you would get with a side discharge mower. You can still distribute evenly with side discharge, but you need to make sure that you are always sending the clippings to the area that you just mowed.
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.