How To Best Get Rid Of Leaves From Your Yard

Fall is in the air and with it comes falling leaves. Leaves are a necessary part of the life cycle of plants, but they can also be a major annoyance for homeowners. Not only do leaves make your yard look messy, but they can also create slippery surfaces that are dangerous to walk on.

While it’s certainly not the most fun task in the world, removing leaves from your yard is a necessary part of keeping your property looking its best. In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to remove leaves quickly and efficiently so you can get back to enjoying your yard!

Here are some tips on how to remove leaves from your yard without too much hassle. So read on to learn more!

Why You Should Remove Leaves From Your Yard

You might think it’s tempting to skip the autumn leaf cleanup altogether, because after all, no one cleans up in the forest and it’s still fine, right? However, if you want a healthy, verdant lawn next year, it is important that you don’t leave any leaves lying on your lawn. When a single tree’s leaves fall and decompose, they are readily absorbed by the grass, but thick layers of leaves can block light and suffocate the grass, particularly when they get wet.

Due to the high chance of snow and rainfall during the winter months, it is best to get rid of any leaves in your yard before winter comes. If the leaves are left to decompose on their own, there is a risk of mold and rot.

If you don’t remove the leaves from your lawn on a regular basis, your grass can die beneath them. This is due to a lack of sufficient air supply for the lawn. Leaving a thick layer of leaves, or any snow that has fallen on top of the leaves, will prevent sunlight from reaching the turf layer of grass, as well as the soil. This sunlight then won’t be able to kill the mold, pests, or bacteria that will grow in the moist and dark undergrowth.

Leaves should also be removed from soft shoots and evergreen shrubs, which could rot from being in contact with the rotting leaves.

When to Remove Your Leaves

If you don’t remove the leaves at all, your lawn will be patchy in the spring and less healthy. It is permissible to postpone raking until most of the leaves have fallen; otherwise, you’ll have to rake multiple times throughout the season. However, you probably want to do at least two leaf-collection days, so they don’t become too numerous and hard to clear.

Make sure the day you pick for leaf collecting is dry and still. Try to clean up before any rain comes, if possible, as wet leaves are significantly harder to move with either a rake or a leaf blower. If the wind is blowing, make it work with you and clear up in the direction of the gusts.

Best Tools to Use

Now that we’ve gone over the reasons why you should remove leaves from your yard, let’s go over what tools you should use to make leaf collection as easy and painless as possible. There are a few different ways you can get rid of the leaves in your yard, but the most common ones use a rake, a leaf blower, a lawn mower, or a vacuum.

Before you get to work clearing your yard, make sure to buy the best options you can for these tools. It won’t matter how many times you rake if the rake doesn’t work, and you’re just wasting your own time and money at that point.


Rakes are the classic option for removing leaves from your backyard. However, you need to make sure the rake is high-quality. If it isn’t, it will either break or not be able to clear any leaves at all. Find a model with an ergonomic handle that you can use without straining your back or arms too much.

Grasp the rake firmly with both hands, and regularly switch their positioning, in order to not get fatigued as quickly. A sturdy rake is best for thick leaf piles that are harder to remove. You should also choose one with a wide end, as that will help to rake more leaves in less time.

Make sure you rake in the right direction. For example, start at one edge of your lawn and work backward until you get to the middle. Then start at the opposite edge and do the same. Repeat this for all four edges of the yard until you have a large pile of leaves in the middle, which is far easier to clean up.

Leaf Blower

Instead of a rake, you might consider buying a leaf blower. This is a great option if you have a large yard, as it can quickly and easily clear all of the leaves in a short amount of time. However, leaf blowers can also be quite loud, so if you’re trying to do this during the early morning or evening, you might want to reconsider this option.

When using a leaf blower, point the nozzle and push and pull the trigger in quick succession. Pull the trigger in short bursts; you don’t want the leaves flying all over the place because then it will be harder to collect them in one spot. Once you start to see them fly away, keep going until all of them are gone from your yard or are in an easily-removable pile.

WIth leaf blowers, it is harder to fully sweep the very edges of a lawn, so we would recommend using a leaf blower for the entire inside space of the yard, and then rake up all of the leaves that you were unable to get around the edges and corners.

Lawn Mower

A lawn mower is a valuable tool when it comes to leaf collection and removal. If you have a bag attachment, it will suck up all of the leaves and deposit them into the bag. This is a great option if you want to use your compost pile to create mulch for your garden in the spring. Or you can simply dump the bags when they get full into a larger leaf collection bag or a large tarp and transport the leaves out of your yard.

However, if you don’t have a bag attachment, the lawn mower can still be helpful. Simply run over the leaves to chop them up into tiny bits. If you don’t have a huge layer of leaves, this can be a perfect way to provide nutrients and extra water for the soil without depriving it of sunlight and causing mold or bacteria growth.

Lawn Vacuum

Using a lawn vacuum is an alternative to raking or leaf blowing. Lawn vacuums function like regular vacuums, but instead of sucking up dirt and debris, they suck up leaves. They make it much easier to gather leaves together in one pile to make the process easier and cleaner too.

Just like a lawn mower, they collect the leaves in a bag rather than pushing them into a pile. Once the bag is full, simply dump it into a larger bag and then go back to vacuuming. Make sure you empty the bag before it becomes too heavy to carry.

You can even looking into buying a two-in-one leaf blower and vacuum, as this way you can switch between the two options depending on what is best at the time. These are more expensive but make everything easier by giving you all the tools you need in one product.

Tips and Tricks

When removing leaves from your yard, check out these tips and tricks to help you get your chores done faster and with less hassle.

Firstly, before raking or lawn mowing, go around and collect all of the larger twigs and rocks from your lawn. This will protect not only yourself and those helping you, but also the equipment you are using. Also, be sure to wear safety gloves and goggles, as well as long-sleeve shirts, work trousers, and close-toed shoes.

Be sure to rake the leaves in one direction and not backwards and forwards. Always sweep toward yourself and walk backwards in the direction you want to collect the leaves.

Use a tarp – place a large tarp in the center of your lawn, gather all of the leaves on top, and then fold the tarp over. This will cause all of the leaves to gather in one area, and you can transport them out to the front curb or to your local dump with ease.

Keep an eye out for any weeds that may have been missed during this process – use weed killer if necessary! You don’t want to go into winter without having dealt with all of your weed problems. They will only pop up stronger in the spring.

If you need more supplies than what you have on hand, consider renting a machine such as a lawn mower or leaf blower for the day at your local equipment rental center.

Maintain this routine until you’ve removed all the leaves from your yard!


It’s time to start thinking about how you’re going to get rid of all those leaves that will soon be covering your yard. You can either use a rake, leaf blower or lawn mower.

Whichever method you decide on, we recommend using tarps and rakes if the leaves are more than an inch thick so they don’t clog up any equipment.

And remember not to bag them after removing them from the yard as it’ll just create more work for yourself later on down the road!

With the leaves out of your yard, you can spend more time outside and enjoy a beautiful fall in comfort.

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Written by Linda Chan
Linda Chan is a passionate gardener and writer with a background in horticulture and landscape design. She has over 10 years of experience working in the lawn care industry and has a deep understanding of the science and art of keeping a lawn healthy and beautiful.