The widespread, but totally erroneous, belief that grass clippings left on the lawn creates thatch was debunked in the late 60’s by a study at the University of Rhode Island. They found that thatch is primarily composed of stolons, stems, roots, and rhizomes. Grass clippings, on the other hand, are mostly water and will break down quickly, returning nutrients to your lawn. So, feel free to mulch those clippings right back into the yard without worry.
Its Safe to Leave Clippings
By all means, leave the clippings on the lawn. There is little evidence that they will cause thatch. Leaving the clippings will save you time, reduce the waste that goes to a composting facility and return nutrients and organic matter back to the soil.
It is a good idea to use a mulching mower, which will chop the clippings finely so they break down quickly. I prefer using a self-propelled mower that has rear-wheel drive.
If you do not have a mulching mower, avoid leaving piles of clippings on the lawn. Run the mower over the pile again to chop the clippings up and then rake them out so they are spread evenly.
How you mow has a substantial impact on the health and appearance of your lawn. Mowing at the proper height and frequency is key.
Many gardeners cut their lawns too short. Turf that is cut too short will tend to have a shallow root system, be more patchy, and be less resistant to stress as the summer heat and dry weather set in. That tends to make lawns more susceptible to weeds and pest infestations.
McKinney Lawnscaping is full service landscaping company is a full service landscaping and lawn maintenance company. We offer a variety of services to make your landscape looking great.