Mowing your lawn can be a pain, but it is necessary for a variety of reasons. Not only can you be fined in many places if your lawn gets overgrown, but mowing your lawn is important to keep your lawn looking lush and green. Regular mowing will actually make your lawn look denser and thicker, and will help lawn treatments work more effectively
Before you get out and begin mowing your lawn, it is important to understand that improper mowing can potentially cause damage to your lawn. To help ensure your lawn stays beautiful and problem-free, the experts at Lawn Doctor have compiled a list of tips for effective lawn mowing:
1. Make Sure Your Lawn Mower is Properly Maintained
The blades of your lawn mower need to be sharp. Think of them like razors or knives – you can do damage with too dull of a blade. In the case of lawn mowers, a dull blade will shred your lawn, leaving it looking brown and susceptible to diseases. Also, a lawn mower is similar to a car, in that it needs gas, oil, spark plug and filter changes done on a regular basis. Make sure check that all the mower’s parts are working correctly. Your local Lawn Doctor can help make sure your mower is at its best when you need it through their lawn mower maintenance programs. Many people tend to neglect keeping their lawn mower in ideal condition, but it is an essential part of keeping your lawn looking healthy.
Treat your lawn mower gingerly – remember that people have gotten hurt by improperly using lawn mowers. Remove sticks, rocks and other debris from your lawn first, so that you do not end up sending debris at yourself. You may want to wear goggles, just in case. You also may want to wear earplugs, just to be on the safe side, because a lawn mower can be pretty noisy.
3. Mow Your Lawn When the Lawn is Dry
You do not want to mow when the lawn is wet, because the blades will clump together and not cut correctly. Also, a wet lawn can be prone to all sorts of diseases, making it easier for them to spread. Plus, you could end up clogging the mower and compacting the soil. Wait until the grass is dry, before starting your mower.
4. Mow Before It Gets Too Hot
You do not want to mow your lawn when the morning dew is on the grass – not only will the grass be too wet, but your neighbors will not be pleased to hear you out that early. But you do not want to mow your lawn in the height of the summer heat, either. You will exert yourself much more – and could put your health at risk– if you wait until late afternoon in the summer to mow. In such cases, midmorning would be the ideal time to cut your grass.
5. Remember the One-Third Rule
Regular mowing is important. But what constitutes “regular mowing,” and how often you should mow your lawn, depends upon a variety of things, such as the type of grass, the time of year, how much fertilizer you use, and how often you water. So there is no “one size fits all” rule for how often you should mow.
But there is a rule for how much you should mow at one time. That is the one-third rule. You never want to mow more than one-third of the grass at once. “Scalping” your lawn – cutting off too much — can have negative side effects, including depriving your lawn of nutrition and exposing the grass to harsh sun. So pay attention to how quickly your lawn grows, and mow accordingly so that you never cut off more than one-third at one time.
6. Mix Up Your Mowing Style
You can mow with horizontal or vertical patterns, overlapping your rows, if need be, to make sure everything is fully cut. Also, push forward, not backward, with your mower. When mowing it’s a good idea to choose a different direction each time. This will make sure that your lawn stands upright as opposed to leaning to one side.
There are a variety of lawn mowing techniques which may only be applicable to your individual climate, such as how closely to mow the lawn for the last mow of the season, how to treat freshly planted lawn spots, and how and when you should mow specific kinds of grass.
Make sure to know what your lawn needs before you start mowing. Although Lawn Doctor does not offer lawn mowing services, they can work with you to ensure your lawn mower is maintained and help you identify if your lawn is being mowed properly.