Autumn leaves, especially the red maple ones, look wonderful as they shine bright in the trees covering your entire garden.
However, as soon as the season comes to an end, they tend to fall on the ground covering the grass of the garden.
If you are wondering why you should rake those dry leaves off your garden, here is everything you need to know.
Though raking isn’t considered good for the environment if you’re an eco-friendly gardener, it is sometimes necessary for the good health of your garden grass.
The task of raking in is definitely not the easiest one and hence you must be wondering if there is an alternative option…
Well, let us explore all such possibilities for the sake of your garden’s health.
Table of Contents
To Rake or Not?
There are both positive and negative impacts of raking and it totally depends upon what types of grass your garden has. Generally, dead leaves hamper the growth of the grass they cover. If your garden has Kentucky bluegrass or some other cool-season grass variant, you should consider raking to nurture their root systems. However, having some amount of stray leaves on the grass won’t hurt their growth as you also need to mow before winter.
The Advantages of Raking Leaves
Though the main benefit of raking is explained right above, here are some other benefits of raking:
- Raking will make your garden look neat and aesthetically pleasing.
- If you rake your garden occasionally, it ensures weed seed germination.
- Raking some leaves will save your plants and grass from potential diseases.
- The dead grass tissue on your soil known as thatch will get removed.
- Raking will definitely be a good exercise for you or anyone who’ll perform it.
- Raking will provide the grass with adequate sunlight during the winter months.
When Should you Rake?
Wondering when you should rake or how often you need to rake?
Though the best time to rake fallen leaves is autumn, there is a fine gap between early autumn raking and late autumn raking. Many gardeners prefer raking in early autumn as the leaves start to fall. Again, they rake in late autumn right before the first snowfall of winter.
Others like to wait till late autumn to do the task only one time. Whichever method you follow, make sure the leaves are completely dry as that will make it easier for you to rake. Another preferable time for raking is spring when you can clean up the dead patches on grass that grow during winter due to snow and moisture. When left unclean, these patches usually cause thatch on the grass.
How to Recycle the Fallen Leaves
You can add fallen leaves or leaf litter to your compost pile and use it as natural fertiliser in your garden. Dry leaves break easily and hence decompose faster. However, you still need to chop the leaves well before leaving them to decompose.
As the leaves fall, you can start raking all the leaves and collecting them in plastic bags. Another way to use the leaves is to create methane for natural greenhouse gas. The fertiliser can be used for providing nutrients to a tree, plant, shrubs and weeds whereas the greenhouse gas can be used as an alternative source of home electricity.
Blowers and Mowers as Alternative Tools
Now that we’ve approached the end of our raking tips, are you looking for some easy alternatives to raking? If yes, then you can consider leaf blowers as they can perform an amazing job.
Depending upon the thickness of the leaves’ layers, you can choose a leaf blower that is portable and equipped with powerful features. If your garden has a very thin layer of leaves, you can consider mowing and leaving the leaf litters for the wildlife to take shelter and enjoy winter in your garden.
Some Recommended Leaf Blowers for your Garden
These wind blowers can help you effectively clean fallen leaves on your lawn. While some of these will blow the leaves, others will help you vacuum clean and mulch your garden as well.
Milwaukee M18BBL-O Blower: This powerful blower equipped with a slimline soft-grip handle is designed to maximise your comfort in the garden.
Husqvarna 570BT Backpack Blower: Designed with an X-torq engine and cutoff throttle, this backpack blower ensures an excellent job with minimal sound.
Makita DUB362Z Brushless Blower: This battery-powered blower with a variable power switch starts quite gently, providing you optimum control.
Ego Power+ 580 CFM Leaf Blower: One of the most advanced cordless blowers, this one features a turbine fan and a high-efficiency brushless motor.
Dewalt DCV100-XJ Cordless Blower: This one is really compact and lightweight, helping you to blow 80m/s air at 18 000 RPM fan speed.
Makita BHX2501 Blower: With a 4-stroke engine, this powerful blower ensures gardeners with fewer emissions and more efficient fuel consumption.
Makita DUB184Z Brushless Blower: The trigger of this battery-powered blower has variable speed control and there is a cruise control lever to ensure lock-on operation.
Worx WG505E Leaf Blower: This one makes a compact package for gardeners including blower, mulcher and vacuum in one box and provides a decent job.
By following the above tips, you can keep your garden squeaky clean throughout the year. However, the worst thing most gardeners do is that they sometimes focus on garden trimmings and raking too often and in most cases, it destroys the ecosystem of their gardens by killing the living species. Therefore, you should understand the specific requirements before you plan to rake.