Most turf experts recommend not bagging grass, especially on home lawns. This is for a variety of reasons, which we will discuss.
Why should I not bag my grass clippings?
Grass clippings act as a fertilizer. There are some guidelines that say recycled grass clippings can reduce fertilizer requirements by up to 25%. This means you may save money on fertilizer.
By leaving the clippings on the ground you save yourself a lot of time stopping to empty your bag, hauling off the clippings and the greater impact of what happens to the clippings. Clemson published a bulletin in the 90s that stated grass clippings account for 20-50% of solid waste going into landfills between March and September.
Grass clippings eventually decompose and return beneficial organic matter to the soil.
Why should I bag my grass clippings?
In some instances it can be beneficial to collect your grass clippings. If your turf already has a heavy layer of thatch, additional grass clippings can compound the problem. Excess thatch can increase fungus, insect and other disease pressure on turf. It prevents air, nutrients and water from reaching the root zone of the turf.
If you have gotten behind your mowing schedule due to life obligations, weather, etc., it may be necessary to bag clippings to prevent excessive clippings left on top of the turf.
Proper care is critical
Mowing grass is an important cultural practice for those who want a beautiful lawn. This means mowing frequency, height of cut, speed and direction all play important parts of a lawn care program. When turf is managed properly, following a good program, the amount of blade removed during each mow is minimal and mitigates the problems associated with needing to bag clippings.
Take it from us, don’t bag your clippings unless absolutely necessary. It will save you time, money and benefit your grass. If you have any questions or concerns please reach out to us, we are always willing to help.