Spring is in the air, which means it’s time to head back outside and maintain that beautiful yard. While this may be lumped into the “chores” category in your household, keeping your grass healthy is extremely important, especially in the spring and summer. The health of your lawn is not just beneficial for curb appeal, but lush and healthy grass also makes for a great playtime surface and allows for other plants and trees to benefit from the quality soil as well.
When it comes to mowing, there is more than meets the eye. Before you drag the old push mower out of the shed and mow the same route you have been trekking for years, give these 4 tips a read to enjoy a healthier lawn this season.
Don’t Trim Too Much
While regular mowing is important to mitigate weeds and to give your lawn a consistent look, it is very easy to over-do this. Most lawn care experts recommend trimming off no more than ⅓ of the length of the grass at any one time. That may sound like too little, especially if your grass is overgrown, but trimming off too much of each grass blade can leave your lawn without enough nutrients to continue to grow sustainably and could damage the root system. The ⅓ rule will also help maintain a consistently full look from the curb.
Trimming too much also pertains to frequency – there is little reason to mow your lawn more than once per week, and mowing daily can lead to damage for your grass. Mowing too often or too close to the root can lead to “scalping,” or causing your grass to develop brown patches incapable of maintaining healthy grass. It will also leave your lawn more prone to weeds and less resistant to drought and weather.
Don’t Mow Wet Grass
It might be tempting to clean up your yard after a storm, but keep your cleanup to picking up sticks and debris and not mowing your grass. When grass is wet, it will take a different shape than usual, and trimming it could exacerbate these irregularities. Once it dries, the irregularities will shine through, and you’ll have to mow it again to give it back its natural shape. Mowing wet grass can also lead to the spread of fungus and plant diseases through your grass, so it’s better to let any diseases dry out before cutting.
Lawn mowers are also deceptively dangerous, with over 80,000 injuries reported each year just in the U.S. Mowing when it’s wet creates a recipe for disaster, as slippery surfaces and steep hills can cause a fall or the loss of control of your mower.
Alternate Your Pattern
One of the most common mowing blunders is mowing the exact same pattern every time. While it’s understandable that you might find a routine and develop a mowing habit, this could actually be harming your lawn. Each blade of grass will bend and grow in the direction it is pushed, and if you consistently mow in the same pattern and same direction, it will force the grass into unnatural growth conditions. This could damage your lawn, make it less durable, and cause it to appear uneven.
To avoid this, try alternating the pattern you cover or direction you cover it with each mow. Even doing the same process in the reverse order will help. Your grass will be healthier and grow more upright, giving it a level and natural look.
Mulch Your Clippings as You Go
One of the great pains of lawn mowing is the removal of clippings. Emptying bags of accumulated yard trimmings on the edge of your property or in the trash is difficult and unsightly, and it is actually not the healthiest option for your lawn. Purchase a mower or set your current mower to a setting in which the clippings will be mulched and returned to the grass as you mow. Because you will ideally be trimming no more than ⅓ the length of the grass, these trimmings won’t cause any noticeable inconvenience, and you won’t have to worry about collecting trimmings anymore. The extra nutrients returning to the soil from the chopped grass will act as fertilizer, reducing your need to purchase additional fertilizer by 25%. A great option that will take care of this step for you is the Husqvarna Automower.
Partner with the Pros
At Scott’s Lawn Care, we are a team of professionals who are trained to help you with all of your seasonal lawn maintenance needs. We will work with your unique home situation to ensure that your lawn is safe and verdant. Make sure you’re taking the right steps: contact Scott’s Lawn Care at 763-479-8155 or visit our website: scottslawncare.net.