Lawn enthusiasts may hit a snag while traversing the world of lawn maintenance and care when their time on mowing results in uneven mounds of cut grass spread across their yard. This brings sour attention to comparing mulching blades and regular (or standard) blades being used on a lawnmower. The difference between the two may be visually insignificant but can give drastically different results on the lawn.
The mulching blade has a significant edge when it comes to cutting the grass itself, whereas the regular blade is coupled with a side discharge or a bagger to give room to different options being applied where suitable.
Mulching Blade Vs. Regular Blade
The process of mulching is described as using plant material as a soil cover, primarily to add and conserve soil moisture. Also known as a 3-in-1 blade, mulching blades can be utilized alongside a side discharge to expel grass clippings a few feet away, a bagger to store the clippings, so they do not fall onto the lawn, or used for mulching grass clippings. Through mulching, the grass clippings are kept in the blades for a longer time as they are cut into smaller, finer pieces. These smaller pieces decompose quicker and fall back onto the lawn, giving nutrients to the grass and soil below.
Mulching blades boast a more aerodynamic shape in comparison to the regular blades, as well as an enhanced cutting edge. These curves allow for the clippings to remain in the deck as they are cut into finer pieces.
Mulching blades are preferred if one mows their lawn frequently (every 3-4 days). Additionally, as mentioned before, the mulched clippings act as a natural fertilizer as the surrounding plants absorb the nutrients provided.
3-in-1 blades, due to their curved design, however, do not provide the same sort of lift as regular blades. Moreover, they do not perform as well when attached to a side discharge or bagger as the clippings are meant to be kept in the deck and then thrown back out.
Regular blades are also called 2-in-1 blades because they can perform either side discharge or bagging of the grass clippings. Most professionals prefer to use the bagger alongside regular blades as it does not leave a mess and keep things tidy while removing leaves and waste from the lawn.
Bagging is also ideal for a lawn infrequently mowed as overgrown grass can often get difficult to mow and leaves behind clumps of grass on the freshly cut lawn.
As we can deduct from the above comparison, mulching blades seem like a very good option for homeowners dipping their toes in lawn maintenance. But what if someone has already committed to buying a lawnmower and does not want to expend any extra budget on purchasing a mulching mower? This is where the mulch kit comes in.
A mulch kit can be purchased for a reasonable price and can convert your lawnmower into essentially a mulching mower. The kit includes mulching blades which you replace with the regular blades on your lawnmower. These kits are available for riding, tractor, and push mowers.
The parts included in a mulching kit are a set of mulching blades, a plug, and other parts required to attach the kit to your mower properly. The plug is used to close shut the side discharge opening, effectively confining the grass clippings to stay inside the deck, where they are repeatedly cut up into tiny particles before being left back on the lawn.
A mulching kit may be preferred to a mulching mower firstly for the obvious reason of cost-efficiency. Additionally, using a mulching kit on a regular mower makes the whole setup very flexible as the kit can be put on or taken off at any time. Finally, owners of mulching kits report no noticeable difference between a mulching mower and a regular mower with a mulching kit.
Benefits of Mulching Blades
⦁ Retains moisture of lawn and soil
⦁ Mowing and mulching are combined into one task, making it time-efficient
⦁ Plants and trees receive nutrients from the mulched clippings
⦁ Reliance on fertilizers reduced due to natural fertilization through mulched clippings hence making it cost-efficient
⦁ Time efficiency as there is no need to attach a bagger and subsequently repeatedly stop to empty it
⦁ Unlike the side discharge chute, mulching blades do not shoot out hazardous items such as stones or sticks
⦁ Mulching the fallen leaves in fall/autumn provides many nutritious benefits to the lawn
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