Grass Clippings: Mulch, Catch Or Leave Them?

When choosing the right mower, you must consider how you would prefer to deal with grass clippings. There are typically three ways to manage your grass clippings; catching, mulching, or side discharging. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages, so here at Stiga, we have outlined each technique to help you decide which you should use. 

Catching Grass Clippings

If you want to catch your grass clippings and prevent them from lying on your lawn, you can attach a grass catcher to your lawn mower. Catching allows for a clean finish, as it doesn’t leave any clippings on your lawn after a mowing session. Although it has a nice finish, catching it can be quite time-consuming, as you may need to empty the catcher throughout the process. 

If you have lots of time to dedicate to mowing and don’t mind the extra effort of emptying the catcher after mowing, catching could be right for you. Without using a catcher and leaving long grass clippings on the ground, you can risk build-up or your lawn being more prone to diseases. 


To mulch, blades and a mulching plug work to spin the grass clippings around, chopping them up into smaller pieces and releasing them out the bottom of the mower. The small clippings then fall into the grass and biodegrade to return nutrients to your soil. Mulching grass can often work better throughout the drier summer months when the grass is shorter and drier. These weather conditions make mulching easier and more effective. 

Mulching in wet weather conditions can be difficult as wet grass clippings can get stuck in your mower and cause problems, delaying your mowing sessions. A rule of thumb is to only mulch when regularly trimming your lawn and not when you have overgrown grass. If you are mowing tall grass, grass clippings will likely get stuck in your mower. 

Side Discharge 

This option requires the least amount of effort, with the grass clippings being left on the grass. Choosing to side discharge can mean you are left with a messier finish. However, if you mow often enough, the grass clippings will be short and not look cluttered. Also, if you have a large amount of grass to cut, side discharge will help you get the job done quicker. Plus, it’s great for the homeowner who doesn’t want to stick to a super rigorous mowing schedule. 

Have Any Questions?

When choosing your mower and its accessories, decide which option works best for your mowing schedule, lawn size and weather conditions. All these factors impact the way you mow and are important to consider as your preferences will significantly determine your choice of lawn mower. 

If you have any questions, Stiga is here to help. To learn more about which mower suits you best, chat with our team or head to your local Stiga dealer today!

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