Common Questions About Grass Clippings

Q. According to the Halton Public Works Department, grass clippings are not permitted to be disposed of as yard waste – what am I suppose to do with them?
A. Leave them on your lawn! Grass clippings contain valuable nutrients that your lawn needs in order to grow. Every time you throw out a bag of grass clippings, you're effectively throwing out a bag of fertilizer! The lawn care and inground sprinkler system experts at Nutri-Lawn recommend evenly distributing your grass clippings on your lawn using a rake. You don't want to leave large clumps of grass as this could potentially suffocate areas of your lawn, leaving unsightly marks.

Q. Won't my lawn be suffocated by grass clippings if I never gather them up?
A. Not at all. Short grass clippings decompose quickly. So quickly, in fact, that you won't be able to see them after just a few short days. The lawn care and automatic sprinkler system installers at Nutri-Lawn always advise clients to never cut more than one-third of the grass blade off during mowing. If you cut the grass any lower, you'll be making your lawn less resistant to disease and the stress of hot summer weather.

Nutrients are recycled back into the soil once the grass has decomposed. Leaving grass clippings on your lawn will also help shade the soil, keeping your grass roots cooler and increasing the moisture retention.

Q. If I cut my lawn at a higher height, won't that mean that I have to cut it more often?
A. No, you might even spend less time mowing! Lawns that are mowed at the proper height with a sharp blade actually mow quickly and more easily. And don't forget – if you're leaving the clippings on your lawn you won't have to spend time stopping to empty the bagger on your mower or hauling bags to the curb.

Q. Is there ever a situation where I should collect my grass clippings?
A. The lawn care and inground sprinkler system experts at Nutri-Lawn recommend collecting your lawn clippings in the following situations:

  • If the grass is long or wet. These types of clippings are more likely to clump and damage the lawn.
  • If your grass is diseased. Removing the infected clippings may help reduce the level of disease and prevent it from spreading.
  • If your mower is unsafe to use without the bagger attached. Collect the clippings and then redistribute them on your lawn using a rake.

Q. Should I invest in one of those new mulching mowers in order to finely chop my grass clippings?
A. Mulching lawnmowers are great, but they aren't necessary. If you raise the blade on your mower and keep it sharp, your grass clippings will decompose naturally without the added effort or expense of mulching it first.

Q. What if my lawn has been treated with a weed killer – should I collect my clippings then?
A. The lawn care and automatic sprinkler system installers at Nutri-Lawn still recommend leaving your grass clippings on your lawn, even after a weed treatment. You can also collect your clippings and put them in a compost pile if you prefer. In a properly maintained compost pile, herbicide residues will break down during the composting process. This process takes about three or four weeks to complete.

Have more questions about lawn clippings or lawn care in general? Then give the experts at Nutri-Lawn a call  - 905-632-2445.