Mulching improves the stripe. I was thinking of buying thr same machine you have and puting the mulch kit on it. JD decks mulch well or better than most, but there is a limit even for them. It well slow you down some mulching, but once you get use to it it's nice. Sometimes you have to doublecut, but you would if you closed the chute off with the blocker too. The MOD deck sounds like the best way to go.