Regular mowing remains the most important lawn care activity. Although you may consider annual spring tasks like aerating and scarifying to make your lawn better, all these tasks without regular mowing may be in vain. Each time you trim the tips of your grass, it encourages a nice, fuller growth making your lawn thicker and more presentable.
For smaller gardens, we highly recommend the Honda HRX 426 SX lawn mower, as it is extremely lightweight yet has a powerful engine.
The Ideal Height for Your Lawn
According to David Hedges, the author of Modern Lawn Care, a regular family lawn should be trimmed to about 30-40mm. He recommends using a standard rotary mower as it does an excellent job in maintaining your lawn. A height of 30-40mm is perfect for your lawn as the grass is short enough to look nice and neat but does not rob your grass of excess leaf area so it grows strong.
Cutting the grass too short robs the leaf area which generates the energy it needs to grow again. Besides, a medium height helps the grass survive during drought periods which come in summer. Lawns that are closely cut easily turn brown in hot and dry weather. However, if you desire a ‘bowling green’ lawn with stripes, you will need to mow more closely. You can follow Stuart Grindle’s way of mowing, former Britain Best Lawn winner and see if it works for you.
Grindle cuts his grass to 8mm in spring and reduces it to 5mm during summer. Opt for such extremely short heights gradually to avoid the risk of turning your grass brown. Just like Stuart, you need a strict mowing regime when your grass is growing strong. He cuts twice every day giving the grass a fine cut and encouraging growth at the same time.
How Often Should You Mow Your Lawn?
How regular to mow your lawn depends on several factors. One of them is the temperature conditions. Your grass requires a temperature of 6 Celsius to thrive and will grow at different speeds depending on how cold or hot the temperature is. Grass growth is slower during extreme cold and hot conditions which means mowing will be less. During winter and extremely hot temperatures, you should refrain from cutting your grass and allow it to remain longer instead.
Long grass protects the soil from sunrays by providing shade, thus preventing the water in the soil from evaporating. As a result, your grass gets additional water to survive on. On the other hand, the long grass acts as an insulation to the soil during winter which aids in combating frost as well as the growth of moss. The grass may turn yellow during hot periods, but this doesn’t mean it’s dying. It is a sign that your grass is conserving energy so instead of cutting it, let it grow.
You may consider giving your grass water but make sure you don’t do this when the sun is too hot as the water will evaporate. Besides, it may act as magnifying glass thus burning your grass blades and weakening them which makes them prone to disease. If you notice your grass growing longer during winter, don’t hesitate to cut it. However, you will find it hard to mow your lawn during winter as there the season comes with unfavourable conditions. Again, wait until your soil dries before you cut your grass and don’t mow your lawn when the grass is wet. Mowing wet grass damages the lawn and may even damage your lawn mower.
Those with regular lawns may mow once every week and shifting to twice a week when you notice faster growth. However, you don’t need to stick to a very strict regime, cut the grass more often if your lawn seems to look shaggy or grow strongly. Also, in case you have guests coming, you may need to mow the lawn to make it look presentable. In the same way, reduce mowing the lawn when you notice slow growth to protect your lawn. Simply adapt to the growth and maintain a medium height.
Cutting New Grass
Cutting new grass comes with challenges. New grass grown from seeds is weaker compared to grass from your lawn. As such, cutting this weak grass may damage it especially if the cutting is done wrong. The best way to protect your new grass is by letting it grow to at least three inches or even more and avoid cutting it when still young.
Note the new grass on your lawn and avoid mowing it when mowing the rest of your lawn. Avoid as much footfall as possible on the new grass and keep your lawn mower away from it especially if you are using a wheeled lawn mower on your lawn as it may leave tread marks and even turn the soil. Also, remove the roller on your lawnmower when trimming the new grass in case you are using a mower with a roller. Protect it from every damage and allow time to grow so your lawn maintains a strong growth from the base.
As much as you need to always keep your lawn neat and presentable, there are times you need to let it grow bushy so it may grow strong. Don’t just mow every week because that’s your mowing routine, check at how fast or slow the growth is before picking your lawn mower.