I leave mine about 2-3 inches after cutting. Some neighbors around here really cut it short, maybe 1 inch or less. Really looks bad, in my opinion. (But mine probably looks bad in theirs.) When I leave it a bit longer it seems to tolerate dry conditions a bit better. I don't mulch or bag when I mow. Sometimes I use a lawn sweeper if there's a lot of residue left. I probably should use Gator Blades on my John Deere riders. I have one on my Lawn Boy (Lawnboy ?) Dura-Force. That really does a nice job. I think that in addition to giving a good cut, when you hit some tall grass the heavier mower blade acts like a flywheel, helping a bit to cut the taller grass, be it Fescue, Bahia, crabgrass, bluegrass, etc. It always helps to "seed" a bit, for a better showing lawn.