Unless you rake your leaves for the sole purpose of creating a pile to jump in, you should stop doing it. It’s hard, it takes time, and there’s a better way!
Just hit those suckers with your lawn mower!
Not only is it easier, but it’s better for your lawn, according to Popular Science who just did a big write-up on why it’s better to hit all those dead leaves with your LAWNMOWER a few times.
The idea is to basically turn them into mulch. Then over the winter, tiny microbes eat the carbon and create nutrients, like nitrogen, phosphorous, and sulfur. Which are all good for your grass. The technical term for it is “mineralization.”
You might have to mow over them more than once to really chop them up. But if you do, you’ll end up with a thicker, healthier lawn in the spring. And it might save time, especially if you have a big yard and a riding mower.
People in areas with a lot of snow just have to make sure they do it before STEADY snow starts to hit. Because when full, un-mulched leaves get covered in snow, it can KILL your grass.
Once they’re wet, they matte together. Then sunlight can’t get in, and it’s like a permanent layer of shade. So you just can’t wait too long.