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How to Rake Autumn Leaves

Getting rid of your leaves in the fall doesn't have to be back-breaking work. With a few tips and the right tools, you may even come to enjoy the exercise.


  • Step 1: Don't rake Put off raking. You can mow over your leaves and bag them -- or mulch them if you have a mulching mower -- well into the fall season.
  • TIP: Don't mow just to get rid of leaves. When your grass becomes dormant, it's time to address the leaves.
  • Step 2: Use a blower Use a leaf blower to blow the bulk of your leaves into piles. While a blower isn't very effective for damp or wet leaves, or for getting into tight spaces, it works well on places like rooftops and open driveways.
  • Step 3: Determine where to rake Determine areas where you can discard the leaves. Leaves will compost themselves beneath trees and shrubs, and you won't need as much mulch for those areas come spring.
  • Step 4: Rake your lawn Rake your grass before the weather turns too cold or damp. Clog-free rakes eliminate the need to continually stop, bend over, and pull debris from tines, thanks to webbed or waved plastic tines.
  • TIP: Many clog-free rakes feature ergonomic designs and comfort-grip handles.
  • Step 5: Pace yourself Pace yourself and don't strain your back. Stop and stretch your back muscles frequently, and switch hand positions on the rake to avoid side strains and cramps.
  • Step 6: Move your feet To avoid back strain, move your feet instead of standing in one place -- rake straight back and move with the rake as you walk backwards.
  • Step 7: Take breaks Take frequent breaks. Sit down, stretch your back, remember to stay hydrated, and enjoy your time outdoors in the fall.
  • FACT: Leaves are red, yellow, orange, and brown all year long. The green pigment of chlorophyll blocks the pigments of the other colors throughout the spring and summer.

You Will Need

  • Lawn mower
  • Leaf blower
  • Clog-free rake
  • Pacing
  • Breaks

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