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Are sharp blades needed when mulching leaves? I mean think about it. What would crush a leaf more a baseball bat or a machete? I think the baseball bat would, right? So dull blades might do a better job.
You need sharp blades until the grass quits growing and it is still growing here. Temperatures are still getting up in the 70's and we are still getting some rain, so it's growing a couple inches a week.
Dried up leaves a dull blade will be fine, but the moist maple leaves will cut up better with a sharp blade. It all depends on the conditions, but I keep them sharp until the second week in November. After that, the grinder will be getting a break.