Regularly cutting grass is the most important task for lawn maintenance. While doing things like aerating, scarifying, and fertilising all contribute to a healthier lawn, none of this will matter if you aren’t implementing a regular mowing schedule.
Yes, cutting the grass feels like a chore but when you take the time to mow regularly the task becomes much easier and will result in a healthier, more vibrant lawn where weeds will struggle to bed in.
Why is Cutting Grass So Important?
Besides making it look much better, cutting grass makes grass growth much healthier. It’s essentially a form of pruning – you remove a piece of the grass blade to encourage more growth at the base, resulting in bushier, more vibrant growth.
Like with any plant, regular pruning produces better growth, which is why regular mowing can be used to increase the vitality and vigour of your lawn.
How Often Should I Cut My Grass?
So, how regularly should you cut your grass? In most cases, once a week is more than suitable for your average UK lawn. Doing so encourages dense growth throughout the lawn, which is one of the best ways to prevent weeds from developing, as grass is taking up most of the soil so the weed seed can’t find a home!
However, the type of lawn mower you use will influence how often you need to cut the grass. For example, a rotary electric lawn mower or a cordless model is the most widely used and great for most lawns, with mowing recommended every 7 to 10 days.
A manual push mower is typically used for ornamental lawns with a close-cut finish and produces a much finer cut. It will need to be used more often than a rotary mower, usually every 3-5 days depending on conditions.
The Weather Can Influences How Often You Should Cut Grass
The weather plays a huge role, with the different seasons influencing the growth rate of the grass and therefore how often it needs cut.
For example, spring and autumn weather is best for growing grass, so you should mow frequently during this period, usually once per week or more often if you want a short finish like with a cylinder mower.
Summer is usually drier so the lack of moisture slows down the rate the grass grows at. This means you should mow less often, usually every two weeks with a rotary mower and one week with a cylinder mower.
Remember to Mow Before it Gets Too Long
Another thing to remember is that you shouldn’t cut too much grass at one time, as it causes extreme stress to the plant and can inhibit healthy growth, leading to scalping and patches developing if you mow too much too often.
It’s recommended that you shouldn’t remove more than one-third of the total grass height at any one time. This means you need to make sure that you mow the grass before it gets too long, otherwise you will remove too much, even with the highest setting on your mower.
For instance, if your highest setting is 70mm, then you need to cut the grass before it reaches 100mm or you will remove too much length. Therefore, its highly recommended that you cut the grass regularly each week, as it ensures the grass doesn’t have enough time to grow too long.
Increase the Cutting the Height if You Want to Mow Less Often
Cutting grass every week can be a big chore, so if you don’t like the sound of cutting it once or twice per week, there is something you can do to slow down growth – simply increase the cutting height on your mower to a higher setting. Most machines have multiple cutting heights, with powerful petrol mowers usually offering the most options.
Because the grass is left longer, it will have more time to grow before it reaches the recommended height that should cut it. This usually means you can cut every ten days or roughly three times per month, assuming you follow the one-third rule and leave the cutting set to high.
Avoid going longer than ten days though, as the grass will get too long and you’ll need to remove more height than is healthy for the plant.