It’s very important to follow a strict regimen in order to maintain and achieve a pristine lawn. Mower blades need sharpening frequently, proper nutrients need to be applied and mowing patterns must be switched. The following guide will help you with landscaping instructions on properly caring for your lawn. If you’ve recently installed sod and need new care instructions, visit our sod service page.
Q) What is the proper height grass should be mowed?
A) Depending on the type of grass you’re mowing, height will range from 1/2″ to 4″. It’s also important to stick with the 1/3 rule. This is a rule professionals and anyone who cares for their lawn follow. All it means is that between mows you’re not removing more than 33% of the grass blades. Removing more than 33% can create a weakening root system by causing the grass to focus more of its energy on healing rather than root development. Cutting the grass lower than recommended not only increases the chance of scalping your lawn, it stresses the grass and increases its susceptibility to disease.
- Bahia grass is from 2″ to 3″
- Bermuda, Common – height 3/4″ to 1 1/2″
- Bermuda, Celebration – 1/2″ to 2″
- Empire Zoysia Height 1 1/2″ to 2″
- Floratam St. Augustine 3 1/2″ to 4″
- Bitter Blue St. Augustine 3″ to 4″
- Palmetto St. Augustine 2″ to 3″
- Seville St. Augustine 2″ to 3″
- Sapphire St. Augustine 1/2″ to 2 1/2″
- Captivia St. Augustine 2 1/2″ to 3″
Q) How often should I sharpen my mowers blades?
A. Maintaining sharpened blades is vital for the health and growth of all lawns. If mower blades aren’t properly and frequently sharpened, this will leave grass blades ridged and unable to heal properly increasing the risk of disease. The frequency in which you should sharpen blades depends on a variety of variables. For example if there are twigs, leafs or if your lawn has sandy patches throughout, the blades will wear down faster. Same is true for the length in which it takes to mow your property.
For the average homeowner every 4-6 mows you’ll want to sharpen the blades. For commercial lawn service companies it’s imperative to sharpen blades daily, approximately every 4-6 hours of mower use.
Q) What is the degree I should sharpen mower blades.
A) A 45 degree angle is optimal for longevity and sharpness. Once a 45 degree angle can no longer be achieved it is time to replace the set of old blades with a new set of blades.
Q) My lawn has wheel tracks throughout my yard. How can this be fixed.
A) While mowing any lawn the mowers are actually damaging the plant taking away its energy from focusing on root development and growth rather than focusing on healing. Along with properly sharpened blades, it’s equally important to switch the mowing pattern each and every visit. Either switch from a horizontal to vertical paths or add a diagonal path on occasion. Switching patterns (wheel tracks) will ensure your lawn is even throughout without ruts and or dips caused by mowing the same path over and over. Maintaining the same wheel track not only creates ruts but also damages the root system. In due time this will weaken the root system causing patches which will then lead to weeds.
For a further detailed explanation on how to care for you lawn visit the University of Florida’s agriculture page.