Lawn mower height is such a misunderstood thing, and has such an important effect for your grass, the grass’s roots, and how many weeds you will get.
Before you spring into action with any mowing, take a minute and learn where you should set the height of the blade.
What’s Your Plan For Spring Lawn Care?
This is absolutely the first thing to decide, because this is what decides how far you will cut the grass.
Option #1 – Overseeding: When your yard looks patchy and bare, you’re going to want to add grass seed to replenish the bare spots and bring it back to a lush turf.
Option #2 – Killing weeds: Using an environmental pre-emergent herbicide is excellent for killing weeds before they can sprout from seed.
Note: You can’t do both because this type of herbicide also kills lawn seed as well as it does weed seeds.
No matter what choice you make, it’s smart to add a layer of top soil. Not only does this add good soil for your grass, you can level any low spots so your mower runs smooth and even.
Lawn Mower Height For Overseeding
If overseeding is your spring lawn care plan, you will want to set your blade at two inches high, or even less. Some folks swear by scalping the turf, but that can be difficult if your yard isn’t perfectly level. The reasons for cutting it shorter than normal are:
- Seeds Need Light – your new grass seed needs light to grow
- You Must Wait To Mow – until the new growth is at least 2 inches high, you’re best to stay off it entirely
Lawn Mower Height For Killing Weeds (and the rest of the year, too)
When it comes to mowing, for everything other than overseeding, you want the grass to be at least 3 inches high. In this way, spring lawn care is the same as all year round. So set your mowing height at 3 inches. Need reasons why? Here they are:
- Drought Resistance – At this height your turf provides its own shade for its roots, making it far more protected in dry, hot weather.
- Kills Invading Weeds – Just as you mow short to allow new grass seed a chance to thrive, tall turf will suffocate invading weeds, depriving them of sunshine.
- Rule Of One Third – You should never cut more than one third of the height of the grass. This is to protect the plant and help it thrive. At a 3 inch cutting height, you’ve got up until 4 ½ inches to mow, so you don’t have to do it as often.
Spring lawn care is easy when you’ve decided whether you are going to overseed or kill weeds before setting the height of your mowing blade. You know you have to cut short if you choose to add new seed to give it the best chance to grow. More importantly, you now know how important it is to set your mowing height at 3 inches the rest of the time.
What are you waiting for? Spring into action and set your lawn mowing height today for greener grass tomorrow!
Got a lawn care question? Contact our World Of Lawn Care Experts for answers.