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Old 01-10-2007, 12:13 PM
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mdvaden mdvaden is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Westside Oregon
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Bagging and compaction. 1 possible reason to leave clippings.

Personally, I prefer to collect clippings on my own home lawn.

At least after it's established for a year.

But for some lawns, it may be very helpful to leave clippings, not due to nutrient value, but to reduce damage to soil structure.

For those who don't bag and leave the clippings, do you do it primarily to save time, save nutrients, or protect the soil?

All of those? Other?
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Old 01-10-2007, 03:52 PM
Duekster Duekster is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: DFW, TX
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I think in the 90's mulching mower technology picked up and most of the Cities around the DFW Metroplex stopped taking clippings. There has been a ton of PSA's about not clogging up the lands fills, storm drains with clippings. The other side of it was the nutrient value.

It really is basically an accepted practice. Bagging is done if scalp and over seed with winter grass and some times in the spring.
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Old 01-10-2007, 03:57 PM
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Team-Green L&L Team-Green L&L is offline
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Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
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We like to leave clippings for the nutrients and to save time, but our newer clients are pretty demanding and don't care about nutrients. "That;s what the fertilizer's for" is what I keep hearing. So...we bag most of the time.
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Old 01-10-2007, 04:16 PM
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Total.Lawn.Care Total.Lawn.Care is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Savannah, Georgia
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I do not bag due to time and extra equipment expense. I some customers that ask about it and I sell them on it due to the nutrient value. I explain that it helps to leave the clippings and it is not a total substitue for properly applied and scheduled fertilizings. I also tell them that due to the extra time required to bag, it would cost more per visit.

That usually stops them form wanting that any longer. Also, once they see that will regular cutting and the cut quality o fmy commercial mower, they usually cannot find alot of clippings and are very pleased.
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Old 01-10-2007, 04:30 PM
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vkurt711 vkurt711 is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Kuna, Idaho
Posts: 32
I bag only in the spring when the grass grows like crazy. I leave clippings the rest of the year to save time and put nutrients back in the soil. I rarely have anyone ask or complain about clippings left on the lawn.

The issue of soil compaction is usually addressed by aerating the lawn. I hadn't thought about the clippings actually helping with this. Good information and more justification for the decision to mulch and not bag like many around here do.
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Old 01-10-2007, 07:50 PM
cantoo cantoo is offline
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Ontario, Canada
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I agree with the guys here saying the customers couldn't care less about the nutrients. They (mine anyway) just want the grass cut and no clumps. And green when it's dry. And cheap.
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Old 01-10-2007, 08:45 PM
Roger Roger is online now
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: McMurray, PA
Posts: 5,870
"No clumps, "no rows" is a far bigger concern of my customers than any story about nutrients. Most of the my residential customers are selectively bagged, that is front, side, and some of the rear (depending upon the house and property). The rear yards are rarely bagged.
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Old 01-10-2007, 09:08 PM
itsallme itsallme is offline
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: MI
Posts: 1
People usually let me know about their town, and say that if it is better for me, I can leave it down by the side of their street and their city comes with their equipment and pick it all up. All yard waste, they are not to big on picking up grass clippings, but they do.
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Old 01-10-2007, 09:28 PM
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lawnprosteveo lawnprosteveo is offline
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 1,934
I mulch mostly for the time savings.. I used to simply side discharge but I didnt like the look of the yard and all the cleanup involved.

As for bagging, I think it sucks...not only in time and labor, but also the amount of space it takes up at landfills. And nearly everything Ive read about leaving grass clippings/leaf mulchings says that it is not harmful for the turf. Maybe even helpful for the turf.

So I will stick with mulching for the looks, time /labor savings, effect on the environment.
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Old 01-11-2007, 12:38 AM
green acres lawns green acres lawns is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: marshfield mo.
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I prefer to side discharge with a OCDC to control the clippings. Mulching spring growth means cleaning the deck daily, so I do catch the clippings on certain properties. But, I have a walker with the wide low pro tires and a 52" tiger cub with/clam shell bagger that I replaced the stock rear tires with 24-12-12 tires and rims to get a wider footprint. That was done to prevent rutting and compaction.
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