Lawn Care - Mowing
Apart from keeping the lawn looking neat and tidy, mowing keeps a lawn healthy.
Regular mowing allows the underlying root system the opportunity to perform well, and sustain and nourish new grass forming above ground.
Circa Week 13:
As the soil begins to warm up and grass growth increases regular mowing can commence.
Delay this task if the lawn/s is very wet or muddy.
The first few cuts of the season should be done with the lawn mower set to give relatively high cuts.
Subsequent cuts should be done by gradually lowering the mower blades to a height to suit the type of the lawn.
For fine lawns, the cutting height may be as high 13mm (½”) and as low as 6mm (¼”)
For tougher ornamental lawns with coarser grasses, heights may vary from 40mm (1½”) to 13mm (½”).
If the lawn edges have become irregular tidy them up by cutting to a straight edge with a half-moon edger.(see maintenance link)
Repair bare patches as soon as they are noticed by sprinkling seed on them.(see maintenance link)
To keep the lawn green and luscious treat it monthly by applying a lawn feed after mowing. (see feeding link)
The lawn surface can be damaged in a variety of ways, for example if the mower is set up incorrectly.
If the height of cut is too low scalping can occur, particularly if the ground is soft.
Blunt cutting edges, and/or the cylinder bottom blade being incorrectly set can tear up the surface of the lawn.
When operating at too high a speed, a cylinder mower can cause ribbing of the surface.
On average, mow twice weekly in summer and once a week in spring and autumn or during dry spells in summer.
Aim to remove up to one-third of the shoot at each cut.
During mild spells in winter, an occasional cut at a high setting can be carried out.
Highest quality cuts are achieved by using cylinder mowers with a large number of blades.
Rotary mowers and hover mowers are suitable for tougher ornamental lawns rather than fine lawns.
Remove clippings except in spells of hot dry weather, when they may help reduce water loss.
Leaving clippings may return nutrients to the soil, but they can also spread weeds, impede aeration and encourage worm casts and disease.
Otherwise deposit grass clippings on to the compost heap, remembering to mix them with coarser materials to speed up decomposition, this will also avoid dense / soggy layers forming in the heap.
Fresh clippings from lawns treated with weed killers should never be used as mulch.