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Techie lawn gear to help with fall cleanups



Summer is a wrap, which means it’s time to start prepping for fall. This gear helps you take care of the leaves in your yard, trim a few branches, and pull out a few stumps. What’s the new trend in lawn maintenance? Even the battery-powered gear is ready for the tougher challenges, and companies are inventing new ways to make the chore a bit easier.

1. EGO Power+ Blower ($179)

The claim to fame with this leaf blower is that it’s the first model that competes head-to-head with gas-powered blowers. In “turbo” mode, the air expels at about 480-cubic-feet-per-minute or enough to dislodge stubborn mulch in your yard. The design was inspired by the aeronautics industry. The 56-volt battery lasts longer than the more common 40-volt batteries.

2. WORX 12-inch 20-Volt Max Lithium Cordless Grass Trimmer/Edger ($100)

When you pick a battery-powered device for fall clean-ups, you benefit from some extra innovations. This battery-powered model lasts about 45 minutes per charge and converts from a trimmer (taking out weeds) to an edger (cleaning up the lawn near a sidewalk).

3. Toro 22-inch Variable Speed High Wheel with SmartStow ($369)

Toro created this space-saving self-propelled mower for people who are also short on time. Two quick release levers help you fold the handle all the way forward, then hang the mower on the wall or in a shed. To use it again, you pop the handle into place, meaning no screws or bolts to tighten. The powerful 190cc engine is designed to be stored vertically.

4. Oregon CS300 PowerNow Chain Saw A6 ($399)

Technology has advanced to the point where even a chainsaw can run on battery power. This model from Oregon Cordless has a 16-inch chain and cuts about 400 branches per charge. For sharpening, you just pull the PowerSharp lever for a few seconds. What’s the main benefit? The chainsaw doesn’t require any priming and starts with one button press.

5. John Deere X700 with MulchControl (Varies by dealer)

John Deere invented a quick way to deal with leaves in your yard. And by “deal with them” we mean turn them into mulch without any raking. On the X700 series of high-end riding mowers, you can opt for the MulchControl add-on, which you access using a side lever. The mower cuts the clippings into finer pieces, which acts as a lawn fertilizer.

6. Polaris Ranger EV Li-Ion UTV ($22,999)

One of the innovations on this electric-powered utility-terrain vehicle (also known as a side-by-side) is that it uses lighter lithium-ion batteries, so the overall weight is less than previous models. It also goes twice as far (about 50 miles). For clean-ups, the rear dump box can hold up to 500 pounds and runs whisper-quiet on your lawn.