Making a mulcher

Ok. Most people won’t have a mulching deck on their home mowers. Maybe the idea of even having a mulching deck is not something they will think about. But they can be very useful at times. Breaking up autumn leaf piles or small hedge clippings for just a start.

While a normal mower will cut grass and dump it into a bag, a mulching deck will throw the cutting around inside the deck and grind them down into much smaller pieces and dump them back down on the grass so that it decomposes in situ and re-feeds the grass. This is a saving for you in getting rid of clippings and the need to feed your grass as often. But most people will use them to grind down biomass in the garden for composting or using as mulch for putting around the bases of plants to stop water loss.

So. You have a normal mower but not a mulching deck… What can you do? Well… You can use your home mower to mulch things if you have a certain kind of mower.

Sorry, but this doesn’t work with hover mowers at all and some of the lower end electric types will struggle. It really needs a little more power than they can deliver… But if you are careful you may be able to do smaller loads.

What you are going to do is to take a look at your mower.

This is my home mower. A very typical petrol mower, nothing special. All you need to do is to take off the box on the back and make sure you have a small gap at the bottom.
If you have an electric mower that won’t run when the box is missing then you may not be able to do this without making modifications.. I don’t support doing that… but you may be able to do it…

I will take no responsibility if it all goes pear shaped!

Some petrol mowers will need propping open a little. Mine will sit like this without any help from me. You could use a piece of string with an ‘S’ hook on it. As long as the flap is almost down you won’t have any debris fly out the back, so you will still be safe. You only need a gap of about an inch. Just enough for the grass to fall out.
Now line up what it is you want to mulch and very slowly pull your mower backwards over it. The mower will eject it out the back and then will pick it up again and re-chew it. You may need to go over the pile a couple of times to fully mulch it… But it will do it!

All the effects of a mulcher without actually having to buy a mulching deck! Not bad, eh?


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