Grass Cutting Tips for Different Types of Grass
Discover the best way to cut grass and keep your lawn healthy and happy.
When done correctly, regular mowing will help your lawn flourish. Running the lawn mower over your grass on a regular basis has aesthetic benefits but it also boosts the health of your grass. Regardless of the type of grass growing in your lawn, with some simple grass cutting tips it can stay healthy and happy all year long.
Mowing height and mowing frequency will help to determine the health of your lawn. Whether your lawn is Bermuda or Kentucky Bluegrass, the best way to cut grass is to follow the one-third rule; never cut more that one-third of a grass blade away in one mowing. This will give your grass time to recover from the stress of mowing and the longer lengths will provide shade for the delicate roots and soil. Most push lawn mowers and zero-turn mowers will allow you to adjust the blade height before you power on the machine.
Find out the type of seed you have for the best way to cut the grass
Depending on the type of grass you have, there are recommended lengths that will allow your grass to thrive. A comfortable length for cool season grasses is 3 – 3.5 inches in length and warm season grasses tend to do better at around 2 – 2.5 inches in length. Here are some guidelines for how to cut certain grass types:
- Kentucky Bluegrass: Keep this grass high, around 2-3 inches, or you won't have enough leaves for an attractive lawn. You should probably mow about once a week, keeping the one-third rule in mind.
- Bermuda: If this grows too high it will become springy and loose so your lawn doesn't offer good footing, and it won't be good looking either. Keep this leafy grass around 1-1.5 inches by mowing every 5-7 days.
- Fine Fescue: This type of grass grows slowly and shouldn’t get over 2.5 inches high, so you only need to mow every 2-3 weeks.
- Tall Fescue: Different than its sister seed, tall fescue grows fast and won't be able to handle a short cut, so grow every 5-7 days to keep it at the ideal 2-2.5 inches.
- Zoysia: Less common, and requiring more frequent mowing – about once a week – this grass is more dense and can be cut to 1 or 1.5 inches. Some dwarf varieties can be cut even lower.
Many lawns in temperate climates will have a blend of both cool and warm season grasses for a nice-looking lawn year-round, so use the current season as your guide when setting your lawn mower height. It is best to leave your grass on the long side in stressful conditions such as extreme heat or cold, this is good for your lawn and your zero turn riding mower or push lawn mower.
Grass cutting tips for all grass types
No matter what type of grass you have in your lawn, there are grass cutting tips you can follow to keep it healthy and attractive.
- Vary your cutting pattern with each mow. This is the best way to cut grass. It reduces wear on your grass and keeps your lawn foundation even. For example, if you use a zero-turn riding mower to cut your lawn each week, you can alternate between a clockwise and counter clockwise direction to vary the pattern.
- Keep the lawn mower blades sharp. A dull lawn mower blade will tear the grass, which can leave your yard susceptible to fungus, diseases or pests. Before the heavy mowing season begins, usually in spring or fall, sharpen the blades on your lawn mower. For zero-turn mowers and other riding lawn mowers, consult your owner’s manual for blade removal instructions.
While cutting the grass and understanding how to mow the lawn can feel like a chore, it doesn't have to be. Just keep these easy grass cutting tips in mind and you'll have a healthy, great-looking lawn throughout the year.