For cool season grasses, it is important to mow your lawn by following good lawn care tips through the year. How you mow your lawn will have as much influence on grass health as irrigation and fertilizers.
Lawn Care Tip # 1 – The Importance of Mowing Height
As a rule, the taller your lawn is mowed, the deer the grass roots will grow. Cool season grasses cut at 4 inches will have longer roots than grass mown at 2 inches. During the summer heat, the longer roots from grass that has consistently been mowed at higher levels will be able to end heat and daught much better.
Should We Mow At Higher Lengths All The Time?
Yes. I mow my fescue / bluegrass lawn at 4 inches all year. When other lawns are turning brown, mine is still green. This does not mean it will not need water during Drought or high heat periods, but it will respond better and recover more quickly.
Lawn Care Tip # 2 – Proper Irrigation
To keep your grass from going dormant during summer drought, watering the lawn may be necessary. Do not practice shallow watering, instead water deeply. This means you should water your lawn so the soil is wet at a depth of 4 inches. The surface will dry quickly, but the deer soil depths will remain moist for longer periods. Do not water again until the grass begins to change color showing a need for more water. Watering deeply and less frequently extends the roots deeper into the soil, providing greater dirt tolerance.
Lawn Care Tip # 3 – Lawn Mowers and Equipment
Be sure your mower is running well and the blades are sharp. If you need to purchase a mower, remember, you get what you pay for, especially in basic mowers. Less expensive mowers have a fixed mowing height and low engine power. Usually the fixed height is not tall enough. At a minimum, the best lawn mower will have an adjustable mowing deck and at least a 4.5 to 5 horse power engine. More horse power is better. Raise the deck to the highest level and leave it there.
If you want to bag your grass, remember, mowers with the largest rear discharge opening will clog the least. These mowers will have a deck that is significantly larger at the back. This is a very important point and will save you a lot of headaches. If you have a lot to mow, especially when mowing tall or wet grass, the larger opening will require less unclogging. Bagging mowers with long, narrow openings only work well with short grass and when the grass is perfectly dry.