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best method to clean up leaves

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by rb_in_va, Jan 7, 2007.

  1. rb_in_va

    rb_in_va LawnSite Member
    from VA
    Messages: 246

    What is the tried and true method to efficiently get leaves bagged? I have almost got it done this year, but am looking for a better way for next year. I've been looking at the blowers. Are the mulching vacs worth anything? Also I have seen the larger bag attachments for the mulch vacs. Do they work? Looking to save a lot a hassle in the future. Thanks!

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Kind of broad questions, but how large is your property, and are there a lot of trees??? What sort of equipment do you have now?

    I have a vac attachment for a handheld Stihl blower...I use it really only for places like stairways going down to basements/cellars and other very hard to work in areas. If you plan to suck up large piles of leaves, you can do it, but it is a looooong process.
  3. rb_in_va

    rb_in_va LawnSite Member
    from VA
    Messages: 246

    My property is only .3 acre, not very big. Plus it is a 2000 sf ranch house, so it has a large footprint on the lot. I do not personally have any large trees, but all of my neighbors do. They haven't offered to rake any leaves for me, lol. Equipment? Just two rakes, and a device that holds bags open to dump leaves into. The bag holder is a big help. To give you an idea, I have bagged up about 90-100 39 gallon bags and I have probably 20 to go.

    It would be great of there was a system that would vac and mulch, then blow it right into the leaf bag but I realize that is unrealistic.
  4. Tvov

    Tvov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,157

    Have you tried using a grass collector on a mower? If it fills up really fast, you also can try mowing over the leaves (mulching them) with the collector off, and then going back over them with the collector on. Mulching the leaves first greatly reduces their volume.

    As Hoolie posts, the hand-held blowers with vac attachment are slow. They are best for doing "detail" work, including cleaning out gardens.

    When you say "mulching vac", I assume you mean the push-type lawn vacuums? Like a Toro or similar? They do work, but again they aren't fast. I would kind of lean towards a push mower with grass collector. But, the push vacs also usually come with a vacuum hose attachment, which lets you reach into tight spaces and gardens. I have one customer who has one of those, and he likes it. He also "vacuums" his lawn every few days during the "leaf fall", so that the amount of leaves doesn't build up on him.

    Do you have any friends or neighbors that have a push vac that you can try first?
  5. grass_cuttin_fool

    grass_cuttin_fool LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,526

    I might would consider mulching some of them to add back to your soil. Then mybe a bagger on your mower, Im not sure what kind of mower you have now. I have a cyclone rake and Im well pleased with it. They can be made to vac and place the leaves in bags. Do a google or yahoo search for cyclone rake and check them out.

  6. rb_in_va

    rb_in_va LawnSite Member
    from VA
    Messages: 246

    Actually I meant this type.


    With this type of attachment.


    Anyone every tried that? I have considered the push mower "lawn vacuum", but it seems like a big expense for the amount of leaves I have. At least it seemd like a big expense before I started bagging all these leaves.
  7. rb_in_va

    rb_in_va LawnSite Member
    from VA
    Messages: 246

    I just have a 21" push mower now. If I had a riding mower I would no doubt get something like that cyclone rake. But with my small lot it's hard to justify a riding mower. I have been looking for a decent used rider though.
  8. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,085

    Just get a walk behind leaf vacuum. One that looks like a walk behind mower, but is designed to bag leaves.
  9. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,697

    I haven't raked a leaf off of a lawn in years. They all get mulched back in. One of the best things you can do to your lawn is add (free) organic matter to it.
  10. rb_in_va

    rb_in_va LawnSite Member
    from VA
    Messages: 246

    I did that when the leaves first began to fall, but then the leaves got to be too much to mulch. I'll just try to stay on top of it better next year.

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