Choosing the right method of cutting your grass can make a difference in the health of your lawn. By understanding the differences between these three methods of managing grass clippings you will be able to determine the best choice for your yard. We will also focus on user preferences to help you determine what will give you the best results.
Let’s start off with this; leaving the grass clipping in the lawn adds to the nourishment of your grass. Now, this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t bag or you should always mulch cut, but the mulching and side discharge methods are necessary in maintaining a healthy lawn.
Mulch Cutting Your Lawn
There is no doubt that some mowers have a better mulch cut than others, in general the smaller the deck width the better the mulching cut. For the purpose of using the clippings to create extra nutrients in the lawn either mulching or side discharge will create equivalent results. However, if you get excessive clumping you should consider side discharge.
Pros: Clippings add vital nutrients to your lawn, limited grass clippings in flower beds, ideal for small deck sizes, standard option on most walk behind mowers.
Cons: Costly add on for riding mowers, can create windrows or clumping with some mowers, can bog engine in wet/heavy grass, cannot cut tall grass.
Side Discharge Cutting
Side discharge is the standard cutting option on most riding mowers and zero turn mowers. Riding mower decks are designed to perform their best in this cutting mode, primarily because there is a better dispersal of clippings.
Pros: Clippings add vital nutrients to your lawn, ideal cutting mode for riding mowers, even dispersal of clippings.
Cons: Grass can be blown into flower beds and driveway, cutting tall grass will windrow.
Bagging Grass Clippings
Bagging the grass in your lawn makes using your lawn nice and is sometimes a necessity. Removing the grass from the lawn eliminated the additional nutrients but can also save the grass by collecting excess debris.
Pros: Creates clean and tidy lawn, vacuums excess debris, allows you to cut down tall grass, keeps grass from flower beds.
Cons: Reduces nutrients to your lawn, bags must be emptied frequently, pricey add on to riding mowers, can clog in wet grass or during leaf removal.