‘Suffocates your lawn’ – safest method to rake wet leaves from grass

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Fallen leaves aren’t much of a hindrance to gardeners, though they can be hard to keep on top of in the colder months. In wet conditions, layers of leaves are prone to causing damage to grass by blocking sunlight from reaching the roots and encouraging fungal growth. Lawn experts have shared the safest way to rake damp leaves from your grass to avoid “suffocating” the green blades.

Heavy rain and cold weather can make layers of fallen leaves a slip hazard in the garden as well as a risk to grass.

An expert at Obsessed Lawns said: “We highly encourage you to take the time to get those damp leaves off your lawn and bedding areas to help prevent fungal problems from sprouting up.

“The layer of wet leaves suffocates your lawn and blocks it from receiving nutrients and sunlight.”

A rake is all you need to clear a lawn, though there is a risk when handling wet leaves.

Be gentle

While raking damp leaves will stop them from blowing away, it can take its toll on the spines of the rake itself.

Obsessed Lawn said: “You are at a higher risk of damaging your lawn or the plants below due to the amount of pressure you will exert to remove the leaves.

The water weight makes leafy matter harder to collect and can bend under pressure.

To effectively clear your grass, rake in straight lines with a firm hand and bag them up as you go.

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Avoid raking into one large pile

It can be tempting to rake fallen leaves into one large pile, but according to the experts, it is very counterproductive.

Not only does it makes leaves impossible to move, but also involves a lot of tedious walking to-and-from different corners of your lawn.

Instead, rake in small sections and move the piles into small heaps before bagging them up.

Don’t use a rake to lift leaves

The bendy spines of a rake will easily break if used to hoist heavy piles of leaves from the ground.

Instead, use a shovel, leaf scoop or large spade to move the damp matter into garden waste bags.

Gloves are essential to avoid blisters and of course, keep your hands clean.

If you are prone to allergies, long-sleeved clothing and even a mask may be necessary to keep you safe from mould spores.

Use the right bags

A sturdy rake is essential to clean up the leaves, but using the right type of bag is just as important.

Obsessed Lawn recommended using paper, or regular garden waste bags to store the leaves before turning them into mulch.

Tarp can also be used to collect large quantities of wet leaves.

The lawn experts said: “A mid-sized tarp that is sturdy is your best option. It will allow you to quickly move it around the garden without battling it in the wind.”

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