How Often Should I Rake Leaves Off My Lawn?

September to November isn’t called “fall” for nothing. You might’ve noticed your lawn is vanishing beneath a layer of leaves. How often you rake leaves off your lawn is more important than you might think.

The More Often You Rake, the Better for Your Lawn

Raking fallen leaves off your lawn is tedious, but it’s vital to your lawn’s health. Generally, you should rake leaves off your lawn every three or four days. You can make a judgment call depending on how quickly leaves are piling up. If it’s day four and leaves are sparse, putting it off for a day or two is fine.

You should consider the weather while deciding when to rake. Leaves wet from rain or buried under snow can harm your lawn, so always rake if rain or snow is in the weather forecast.

Leaves being raked off grass.

Why You Should Rake Often

A healthy lawn needs to breathe, which it can’t do beneath piles of leaves. Fallen leaves prevent water, sunlight, and other nutrients from reaching the grass.

A layer of leaves on top of your lawn doesn’t just starve your grass of nutrients. It can also lead to mold. The longer your lawn is buried beneath leaves, the less it will grow. You might have a patchy brown lawn if you put off raking for too long.

The Best Tools for Raking Leaves Off Your Lawn

Raking leaves is hard work, and your tools affect how often you need to do it.

A Lawn Vacuum Is the Best Option

When it comes to efficiency, nothing tops a lawn vacuum. Why spend an hour manually raking leaves when you could suck them up and shred them to bits with no cleanup? The only downside to lawn vacuums is that they are expensive, but this investment can pay off in the long run if you have many trees dropping leaves in your yard.

Rakes Are Effective But Take Longer

Leaf blower for blowing off leaves quickly.

Rakes with a wide tine spread are best, as they’ll grab the most leaves. Cheaper rakes can clog with leaves they pierce, so choose a rake that won’t pierce leaves for more efficient leaf removal.

The downside to rakes is that they take longer, affecting when you can rake. You must consider the weather, too, as a single gust of wind will destroy your leaf piles.

A Leaf Blower Speeds Up the Process

A leaf blower can clear a large area more quickly than a rake, gathering the leaves in one spot for easier disposal. You might still need a rake but over a much smaller area.

A Lawn Mower is Great in the Right Circumstances

Lawn mower mulching leaves.

A lawn mower with a mulch setting is a great time saver because you can reuse shredded dry leaves as a natural mulch for your lawn.

A lawn mower gets the job done quickly, but it shouldn’t be your default tool. A mower can’t shred wet leaves, and if there are too many leaves, the shredded pieces can still harm your lawn. You might have to rake leaves again if you use a lawn mower at the wrong time.

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