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new grass every opportunity to grow by keeping people, especially children, off the lawn. Also, even if the lawn becomes iced over, avoid walking on it. Leaf Clean-Up The more trees you have on your lawn, the more fallen leaves you'll have. It's important not to dismiss fallen leaves and instead to take quick action to remove them, as they can disturb your turf grass, especially recently seeded lawns. Removing leaves quickly will also decrease the chance of insect and lawn disease problems since leaving leaves on your lawn can cause them to

become matted down from rain and moisture, and is more prone to developing insect problems and lawn diseases. To remove leaves from your lawn, a rake or leaf blower both work well. Be careful not to pull up any tender grass blades while using a rake. A bamboo rake can be useful because it does less damage than a plastic or steel rake. If you want to be extra careful with grass blades, a leaf blower will help, although you may want to make sure any and all new seeds have germinated and won't be blown away by the leaf blower. To avoid both the rake

and blower, you have another option with the mulching mower, which can shred leaves into tiny pieces that decompose in the lawn while adding organic matter and nutrients back to the soil. Don't let the name fool you, as the mulching mower does not actually make mulch, but leaves behind compost instead. The mulching mower can be quite beneficial since it leaves compost in the lawn directly as opposed to the trouble of creating a separate compost pile and using that to spread over the lawn.

Written by Fran Phalin. Courtesy of