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Those little snippets of grass that churn out the back of the mower are like gold dust. Leave them on your lawn and the rich nitrogen content will return to the soil and make the lawn healthier than ever, just as nature intended.
But this option is not for everyone, and some prefer to rake the clippings up after mowing, toss them in a wheelbarrow, and either dispose of them in the bin (make sure its your garden bin, and not a black bin), or compost them separately, or even take them to the tip.
To mulch your clippings directly on the lawn, follow these instructions. Bear in mind this only really works well if you are cutting a little bit of the grass each time, at a relatively dry time. (Cutting in the wet is generally a bad idea)
To compost your clippings on the lawn, mow dry grass with a sharp blade and aim to remove no more than a third of the height of the grass. This can usually be accomplished twice weekly in the summer months and once weekly at other times.
For best results, use a mulching mower and let the clippings fan out the back. Then when you are done simply leave the clippings to decompose. If there are any clumped together, you can separate them for faster decomposition. The grass clippings should disappear within a few weeks.
Are grass clippings good for compost?
A few layers of grass clippings will be good for your compost heap, but if you put too much you can end up with a slimy smelly mess.
To avoid this, make sure you mix them up regularly with other composed items like paper, cardboard, leaves, and vegetable peelings etc. This helps the compost to heat up and rot down fast, be aware you may need to stir the heap for optimal composting.
The grass clippings should have turned completely into compost within a few months.
Warning: Avoid putting clippings from herbicide-treated lawns in compost heaps. The strong chemicals can persist and could harm plants that the compost is later used for. Stick to organic lawn care!
Can I use grass clippings as fertiliser?
Grass clippings are a rich source of nitrogen and can be scattered around vegetables, used to fortify the soil with nutrients, mulched around vegetables, put in the trenches with the spuds, or spread in the bottom of the chicken pen.