Lawn Care 101: Mowing Tips that Will Make Your Yard the Envy of the Neighborhood
“I hate to see overgrown yards in the middle of summer,” says Bob Carr, owner of TLC Incorporated, a lawn care and irrigation company. “Mowing is science more than an art, and following just a few rules can keep your grass looking green and healthy all spring and summer long.” Carr shares of few of his favorite rules here:
- Mow your yard regularly-grass looks its best when it’s trimmed at appropriate intervals. That said, summer days can easily get away from us and mowing gets pushed to the backburner until yards look like a mini rain forest. If you do go awhile between each mowing, don’t immediately chop the grass down to the nubbins, as longer grass has a deeper root system that helps keep crabgrass and weeds at bay. Do catch-up mowing over the course of a few days, so you don’t send your grass into shock.
- Leave some clippings, as they quickly decompose, sending water and nutrients back to the living roots. Now that applies only if you haven’t let your grass go for a month in the midst of a rainy summer; if your cut grass is clumped up in monster piles, go ahead and bag it. There will be some clippings that are naturally left (you can’t possibly pick up every single clipping), and they will put water and nutrients back in the ground when they decompose.
- Always use a sharp blade when mowing. Sharpened blades lead to more precise cuts and don’t damage the grass.
- Don’t mow in the same direction every time. Cut in different directions with each mowing, so that grass doesn’t have a chance to form a set way of growing. Your grass will look healthier and better when you vary your mowing direction.
- Don’t mow when it’s raining or just after it’s rained. This may seem like common sense, but there are still people who have to do it to maintain schedules. But letting the yard dry up pays, as you can damage your lawn mower (they sink in mud!), mess up the soil and end up with damage to your grass by mowing in the rain.