Dealing With Autumn Leaves on Your Lawn

Dealing With Autumn Leaves on Your Lawn

I know autumn leaves look pretty and give you that autumn feel, but you really should not leave them lying on your lawn. They could cause you all sorts of problems.

In this post I’ll be giving you some helpful advice to make sure autumn leaves don’t cause you any hassle now or in the future.

autumn leaves in lawnWhy should we remove leaves from my lawn?

There are actually various lawn health, not just tidiness reasons why you should remove leaves sitting around in your garden. To make it little easier, I’ve put them all in a list (or at least all the ones I’m aware of) down below.

  • Because leaves can form a barrier which blocks access of air, water and nutrients to the grassroots, they can smother the grass which can lead to death in just a few weeks.  You have most probably heard before that “lawns have to breath too”.
  • Leaves will smother your lawn allowing perfect conditions for moss to take over.
  • Leaves promote lawn diseases like snow mould and brown patch (caused by fungus).
  • Leaves attract and make life easier for various small insects and pests – which then in turn can attract moles and birds.
  • If leaves are matted down well, they can prevent new grass blades growing the following spring, leaving your lawn looking bare with patches.

To make sure you aren’t at the mercy of any of these, I would recommend that you clear your lawn at least once a week.

How do I remove leaves from my garden?

There are many different ways this can be done, see my list below –

Manual Rake

Many people do not enjoy raking their lawn as it can be really a hard and time consuming task. What is worse that that when you have finished raking your lawn, you look around and can start all over again. Naturally this does depend on the amount of trees in your / neighbouring gardens and the weather conditions.

If you do not mind the weekly workout, I would recommend that you invest in a good quality rake. There is nothing more annoying that the leaves continuously sliding up and blocking the head, as you would be fighting with the rake itself rather than getting the job done!

Some leaf rakes have have extra wide heads, some have rigid and curved plastic tines, others have round metal tines – whatever you choose make sure you purchase a higher quality / prestige range rake, as after all you will be using it on a regular basis.

Last update on 2020-10-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Petrol and Electric Lawn Rake

Purchasing a petrol or electric lawn rake will help to make the task of clearing leaves, moss, thatch and weeds from your lawn much easier to compared to a manual rake. Recently, these machines have come a long way in terms of latest technology and innovation.

If you want to save yourself time and lots of sweat, then purchasing one of these machines will make your regular task much easier.

Yes there are many makes and models to choose from, so to make it little easier, see the best lawn rakes and scarifiers I have included my top selection on the link below – Best Lawn Scarifier Reviews.


Mountfield Princess 34 ReviewMore and more gardeners are purchasing mowers that can mulch both the grass and the leaves.

To see the benefits of mulching, click on the link below – The Benefits of Mulching.

In terms of mowers, you can purchase cordless, petrol or electric mulching mowers. I know that this can be little daunting, therefore I  have included a link to my best mulching mowers below – Best Mulching Lawn Mowers.

Please note that you can purchase a mulching mower with a special blade and a mulching plug OR with some mowers like the Hayter Harrier range you can just leave the back flat open, should you wish to do so (this option is of course not as effective as the Mulching mowers).

The mulched grass clippings and leaves, that are much smaller compared to the non mulched garden waste, can then be put into your compost bin and re-used the following spring.

Cordless and Electric Leaf Blower Vacuum

Hyundai HYBV3000E PracticalitiesAgain, this is another option how you can remove leaves from your lawn and garden. You can also blow leaves off low level roofs and guttering (I am sure that most of us do not have gutter guards installed).

These machines have come a long way in terms of their performance, innovation and technology. Most gardeners believe the the bag looks small and it needs to be emptied every 5 minutes, but this is not the case. The leaves are mulched and compacted by ration of 1/10th of its original size, making it suitable for composting.

Most of the leaf blowers have 3 in 1 functions – blower, vacuum and mulching making this machine versatile.

Again, there are many makes and models to choose from, so to make it easier I have included a link to the Best Electric and Cordless Leaf Blowers below –

Best Cordless Leaf Blowers

Best Electric Leaf Blowers

How picky do you need to be when collecting leaves in your garden?

Not as much as you’d think.

When you’re just focusing on the health of your lawn, you don’t need to be overly enthusiastic about gathering up all the leaves. If there’s only a few lying out there, then you’ll be totally fine just to leave them.

It’s only when you’re motivated by aesthetics that you’ll need to hunt down the last few stragglers hiding in the corners of your lawn.

What to do with the collected leaves?

If you do get a good amount of leaves fall on your lawn every year, then don’t just throw them away, put them to better use. They are free organic matter after all!

  1. Put the leaves into your Compost Bin – they will decompose faster if they are shredded first, but this is not essential.
  2. Mulch – using a mulching mower or a mulching Leaf Blower Vacuum, then empty into your compost bin.
  3. You can use the leaves to insulate tender plants/vegetables.
  4. You can leave them on your lawn and run them over with a mower and either pick and collect OR mulch the leaves.
  5. You can always use the leaves to have fun with your children.

Mulching is great for the health of your lawn/plants, environment and also saves you money as most councils now charge a fee for garden waste collection.

Make sure you don’t overdo the mulching to the point where you’re still smothering the lawn. The grass blades should always be facing upwards and visible even when covered by the leaves.

Also, make sure to spread the leaves around to make for even distribution and feel free to use them in other areas of the garden, like flower beds and the compost pile.

Collecting leaves in action video

Below, I have included a handy video to show how you can turn autumn leaves into gardener’s gold.

I hope you take into consideration all the tips I mentioned above. If you do get a lot of leaf cover over in the autumn then they’ll definitely save you a lot of work and effort in the spring.

Tell me what you think and share more tips in the comment section below.

Thanks for reading and if you’d like to save yourself the hassle of mulching all those leaves manually, then check out my list of best mulching mowers (link in the article above) and best leaf blowers, links above.

6 thoughts on “Dealing With Autumn Leaves on Your Lawn

  1. The worst part about raking leaves is when you think you are done, turn around a find you can start all over again… lol. Can the leaves be used as compost? The reason I ask is because in the past I have not had much success. I have notice that the leaves in the bins take a lot longer to break down then everything else in the the bin.

    I never realized how advanced lawn mower have become. Following you link to learn more.

    Thanks, tom

      1. When I used to compost the leaves from nine limes I would have two bins for them and in turn leave for two years before using. (Now I am older I put them in the council garden bin!)

  2. Wow!! Lots of content and information. I was truly impressed with your site. I am curious now about these lawn machines. What kind of drive do they have? Where can I find them locally? I have never seen these types of machines before. Where could I find a demonstration on a local level?

    1. Well they are a little uncommon but growing popularity so I’d imagine you’ll be able to find somewhere nearby to help you out. If you let me know where you’re from then I’m happy to help you find the nearest place ;-)

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