Mowing may seem like a cut and dry chore – if you’ll pardon the pun. However, it actually plays a large role in your lawn’s overall health. Going beyond how nice your lawn looks, it really could tip the scale between success and failure.
Lawn Mowing Best Practices
Set Your Mower To The Correct Height
You should never shear off more than the top 1/3 of your grass blades. Doing otherwise could harm the grass and allow weeds to creep in. If you have warm-season grasses, like zoysia or centipedegrass, you should aim for a middling height. And if you have Bermuda or bentgrass, these varietals actually do prefer to shortest settings. If you’re not sure which grass varietals live on your lawn, be sure to ask your lawn care professional, so you don’t accidentally stress out your grass.
Got Slopes? Mow Across – Not Down
Early morning dew or remnants of a rain shower can leave grass slightly damp. If you mow up or down a hill, gravity may take its course, and now you’ve got a weird mowing pattern. It’s better to mow side-to-side across slopes.
Mow At Dusk
Never mow the lawn during the middle of the day. The sun is at its highest, which means the temperature is the hottest. This will not only leave you feeling the heat, but your lawn won’t appreciate it either. Wait until after dinner to mow. This is also a good time to water since the sun won’t evaporate the moisture. And speaking of moisture: never mow wet grass. It clogs the mower and creates uneven clippings.
Keep Those Blades Sharp
Cooking knives, barber scissors, and mower blades are all things that should never, ever be allowed to go dull. Unsharpened mower blades won’t make a clean cut and will create ragged edges – in the same way, quickly brushing through hair can create tears and split ends.
Mix Up The Mowing Pattern
Humans are creatures of habit, and there’s nothing wrong with a good routine. But when it comes to mowing your lawn, following the same pattern can create ruts in the lawn and train the grass to grow in that direction, creating a slouched appearance. If you want the grass to stand up nice and straight, mow vertically, horizontally, and diagonally. Your grass will thank you for it.
Turn Those Grass Clippings Into Mulch
Before you toss bag those grass clippings, you might want to reconsider. Using a mulching attachment instead of the bag can be incredibly helpful for your lawn. The clippings break down quickly into your lawn and will replenish the nutrients. As long as the clippings aren’t too long, in which case they might smother the grass, they are an excellent, free way to mulch. You should also always discharge the clippings toward’s the grass that has already been cut. If you point your mower attachment towards the unmown grass, you’re just creating more work for yourself and your mower.
It’s Okay To Procrastinate
Seriously. Some homeowners think that you must mow once a week no matter what. That’s not the case. What happens if hurricanes bring excess rain and you can’t mow for two days? You should really let the grass tell you when it’s ready for a haircut. This will keep your grass healthier and unstressed.
Don’t Mow New Grass
Whether you’ve had a sod installation or overseeding application, don’t mow the grass until it’s well-established. The last thing you want is to watch your mower tear out the grass you’ve spent good money on. Yes, long grass looks a bit unkempt, but waiting ensures the root system is healthy. If you follow tip no. 1, mowing grass at the correct height once the grass is ready to be trimmed will actually encourage proper root development.
Mowing a lawn is just one step in keeping your lawn healthy. Mulching, watering, and fertilization are also integral in keeping your turfgrass green and vibrant. Don’t be afraid to ask your lawn care professional what else you can be doing to improve your grass.
Leave The Hard Work To The Pros
The licensed technicians at TLC Turfmaster Lawn Care are experts at lawn care. We’re pleased to offer lawn mowing services for commercial properties and lawn fertilization and weed control services for both residential and commercial clients. Trust the care of your lawn to us, and we’ll keep your property looking it’s absolute best! To learn more or schedule a treatment, give us a call at (901) 509-9005 or contact us online. If you’d like more tips on lawn care, follow our monthly blog, Facebook page, or Twitter account!