Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 22

Thread: Leaf sweeper

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Montfort, Wi.
    Posts
    782

    Leaf sweeper

    We've been chopping and windrowing leaves with our riding lawn mower, then using a push mower, chopping them further into a bagger on the mower. The bag on the push mower is fairly small so we make frequent stops. At one time we had a bagger on a Cub Cadet and it was not very good in that it was hard to assemble and mount and had numerous leaks that allowed leavers to shoot all over. We now have a Simplicity Broadmoor. I'm wondering if anyone has a way of picking up leaves that works for them. We're 79 years old and the usual ailments so appreciate the task being as easy as possible. We use a lot of leaves for mulch in the gardens during the year.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    2,625
    I use the much-maligned gas-powered leaf blower to move the leaves into rows, and bag with the mower as you do. Yes you have to stop a lot to empty the bag, but it's still better than raking. My complaint is that we have trees that drop early, and then trees that drop late, so we have to do it twice.

    This year there's been a local push for people to leave the leaves on the lawn or just run a mulching pass over them, for the benefit of wildlife and plant fertilizer. Saying that the myth that leaves are bad for grass is wrong. I'm going to see how that looks.
    < insert spurious quote here >

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    New Westminster BC
    Posts
    2,911
    Probably a much smaller property than you are maintaining but I use a mulching corded yard blower/vac to collect and bag leaves. Mulches to about 1/10th the volume but only works well on smaller dry leaves. We have an evergreen Magnolia which has big tough leaves and it struggles to handle them, usually plugs up frequently.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    505
    Run over the leaves (and pine needles) with my John Deere lawn tractor with a regular non-mulcher blade. I found this reduces the bulk of the leaves compared to untouched leaves and I also try to guide them into loose rows. I then run my 42" Brinly sweeper, similar to the John Deere model, and collect the leaves. Empty the sweeper in suitable location on my lot and then shovel them into my trailer and take to the yard waste section of the local dump for composting. Don't have a huge lot, typical 100x150' so whipping around with the sweeper is fairly speedy. Volume collected this year is about 50 cubic-feet but the #$%$# oaks still have about 50% of the leaves still.
    Last edited by Bill Howatt; 11-03-2023 at 1:36 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    9,725
    I block off the bag on the mower then run over the lawn to chop all the leaves first. then do it again with the bag. this reduces leaves to less then 1/3 as much. So less dumping of the bag.
    Bill D

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKinney, TX
    Posts
    2,059
    May be more than you need but check out the cyclone rake. I’ve had one for years and it works great
    Steve Jenkins, McKinney, TX. 469 742-9694
    Always use the word "impossible" with extreme caution

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
    Posts
    15,529
    Blog Entries
    1
    I used our 48" lawn sweeper this year to remove the fallen leaves. It did a decent job, but filled up quickly. I had to make more than 12 trips across the yard to my lawn clippings/leaf dumping site on the back of our yard area. It snowed two days later, so I may have to run around the yard again.
    Lee Schierer
    USNA '71
    Go Navy!

    My advice, comments and suggestions are free, but it costs money to run the site. If you found something of value here please give a little something back by becoming a contributor! Please Contribute

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    3,051
    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Calow View Post
    This year there's been a local push for people to leave the leaves on the lawn or just run a mulching pass over them, for the benefit of wildlife and plant fertilizer. Saying that the myth that leaves are bad for grass is wrong. I'm going to see how that looks.
    Too much leaf litter can smother grass. Some is good to mulch up into the lawn, especially if you have heavy soil (clay). I mow back and forth, so as I mow the chopped up leaves get spread across the lawn. However, there are times to rake. I have a maple that dumps its entire load over 2 weeks. That's too much to try to mulch into the lawn.
    Brian

    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger or more complicated...it takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." - E.F. Schumacher

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    1,510
    I have a cub cadet. I go over the yard with no bagger cutting everything up, then come back and go over the yard again cutting and picking up the leaves. I do use a leaf blower to get them out of the landscape beds first. Might be time to pay someone to do this for you. I have reached a point at 66-11months I am starting to have to pay people to do stuff I can't do anymore. I am not allowed in the crawlspace or on the roof anymore, martial bliss is involved. Won't be long I can cut grass, but leaf pick up in the fall will be my landscapers job. Brian
    Brian

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Northwest Indiana
    Posts
    919
    I think that what works depends greatly on the type of trees and leaves you have to deal with. What works for one property may not work at all for another. For example...

    I'm just under 2 acres with 25-30 trees--fortunately mostly maple & wild cherry, so our Dixie Chopper chews them up well enough that it looks no different than yards that get raked and bagged. Grass hasn't suffered in 30 years. On the other hand, 2 of our sons have mostly red oak and white oak trees--so they are forced to get them off their lawns.

    Glad we only have to rake out of the areas right next to the house, and then only far enough to be able to mulch them!!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Somewhere in the Land of Lincoln
    Posts
    2,515
    I can't praise "Gator" mulching blades enough. I mowed yesterday and the west side of my property is lined with soft maples and other junk trees. We have had several hard freezes so everything is dropping. While I mowed because it needed it the ground was covered with leaves on the tree line. After running over with my mower you could scarcely tell there were ever leaves there. The leaves are pulverized to such small pieces they all but disappear. Look into trying such a blade on your push mower. It won't be fluff in the bag. I run them all the time because the heavy wet grass discharges so much better without clumping.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    8,916
    Yes, commercial mowers make leaves disappear. You can't let them get thick enough that the mower pushes them, but two passes takes care of everything here. I save othewise pretty worn Gator blades. Doing the leaves here in the Fall finishes off the mulching teeth on top.

    We have one acre and a half piece that is completely covered with hardwood trees with grass under them. It's maybe 120 feet wide the narrow way. I wait until I have a strong wind coming off the lake, start on the side towards the lake, and blow the debris with the wind. By the time I get them to the ditch it's one pass down one side cleans out that side of the ditch. I make another pass on the other slope of the ditch throwing them in the road, and then blow it all out of the road into the woods on the other side of the road. This whole process might take a half hour, mainly because of having to navigate around all the trees.

    I have several different corded and cordless blowers, and a Billy Goat 13hp blower on wheels that we used to use. Since buying this 72" commercial mower, the only one of those needed is one of the cordless ones to get the leaves out of the flower beds next to the house where I can get to them with the mower.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    65,439
    Tom, that's very true. My SCAG Freedom Z which is a "less commercial" version in their line made quick work of ALL the leaves dropped by the maple trees on our property this past weekend. They were pulverized after a few "thoughtfully planned" passes, both with deck raised and then lowered to normal cut height. There's almost no evidence they were there at this point.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Highland MI
    Posts
    4,502
    Blog Entries
    11
    I have the JD 425 48" zero turn with the bagger which includes a vacuum attachment (no separate motor). Still spits a few leaves out the opposite side, but it really chops them up to the point the bag is almost too heavy to lift. (pic not mine but close)
    NOW you tell me...

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Iowa USA
    Posts
    4,418
    I also have a John Deere zero turn but with just mulching blades and the cover for the discharge side it does a decent job on the leaves. Two or maybe 3 passes and its done.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa.HVAC/R , Cloudray Galvo Fiber , -Windows 10

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •