Australians love their lawn. A place for summertime barbeques, playtime with the kids and pets, and relaxing leisure time. However in the hottest time of the year, lawns are under a great amount of stress from heat, lack of water, sun exposure and even weeds. If not looked after properly they can soon become worse for wear and susceptible to disease and invasive plant species.
An effective way to minimise the stress on your lawn and help to keep it healthy, is to follow appropriate mowing practices.
Here at Hi Quality Turf with so many years of experience in the industry, we know all about the importance of proper lawn maintenance. We’ve composed this blog of important summer mowing tips to help our customers be better prepared and keep their lawns as healthy as possible.
Summer is potentially the most challenging time of year for your lawn, with potential exposure to extreme heat, wind and dryness for prolonged periods of time.
While you can’t control the weather, you can take a few key steps in mowing maintenance to make sure your lawn is well set up to survive these trying conditions. Let’s go through some of these important steps.
Frequency and Height
When mowing your lawn, especially during the stressful summer period, the frequency and height of the cut can play a big part in its success.
The key to lawn mowing in summer is to make sure you are doing so regularly. Regular mowing encourages the lawn to thicken up with deeper root growth. This builds a stronger, more resilient lawn, keeping it healthy.
In regards to the height of the cut, you should increase your mower height to minimise the amount of stress that is caused to the turf. By leaving longer grass blades, this provides more shade to the soil, enabling it to keep cooler and decrease the amount of evaporation.
Additionally with a higher cut there is less pressure placed on the lawn to make up for growth in potentially stressful conditions, than would have otherwise been present with a shorter cut.
It’s generally recommended to follow the one-third rule, in that you should never cut more than one third of your grass blade height off in one go.
In the event that you’ve let your lawn grow too long, to regain control, start by mowing it higher than normal and then every few days mow it a bit lower every time to eventually get it to the desired height.
Time of Day to Mow
In summer the hot sun in the middle of the day is more likely to damage any freshly cut lawn, leading to the grass developing burned tips.
It’s therefore recommended mowing earlier in the day or as the sun has started to go down again, doing so when cooler will cause less stress to the leaf. Note: if mowing early in the day you should wait until any morning dew has evaporated as cutting wet grass will damage your lawn.
Maintain Your Equipment
When mowing, the last thing you want to do is have blades that are dull and not up to the job. Dull blades chop at the grass, leaving it raggedy and with dead ends. In order to recover, the grass then has to focus a lot of nutrients and energy on repairing, wasting a lot of valuable resources.
Make sure your blades are sharp and in a good working condition. A sharp set of mower blades will cut much cleaner and also reduce harm and stress to the grass.
Remove Grass Clippings
While some people like to leave grass clippings on the lawn after they mow, we recommend collecting and disposing of them appropriately.
Leaving mounds of grass clippings can cause the humidity in the air to become trapped, promoting conditions for fungus and other diseases. It also prevents the healthy flow of air reaching your roots and soil.
Removing clippings will also minimise the spread of any weeds or pests present in your lawn.
The best way to prevent weeds sprouting and taking over your lawn is to keep your grass healthy and dense. A thick growing habit will stop sprouting weeds from receiving sunlight and discourage further growth.
As mentioned earlier, regularly mowing your lawn to the right height will encourage it to grow thicker and to thrive. This minimises the chances of any invasive weed species or pests getting a foothold and spreading in your turf.
A healthy luscious lawn is essential for all the backyard activities that are common in an Australian summer. From entertaining and leisure time, to exercise with our pets, a healthy lawn forms a central part of these experiences.
However, keeping your lawn looking healthy during the harsh Australian summer can be a struggle. Luckily there are few important steps to follow to minimise the stress on your lawn.
In order to establish a thick growing habit and minimise exposure to weeds, remember to mow your lawn regularly and don’t cut more than one third of your grass blade height off in one go.
To limit any damage and encourage healthy growing conditions. Make sure you mow your lawn earlier in the day or as the sun has started to go down, ensure your blades are sharp and in a good working condition, and dispose of any grass clippings when completed.
Following these tips, will put you a step ahead and provide your lawn with the best possible chance to stay healthy and looking its best.
We hope this advice will come in handy this summer. If you’re after any further information on lawn maintenance or any other turf related matters don’t hesitate to contact us here at Hi Quality Turf. Having our very own turf farm, we provide a complete end to end service from seed all the way through to ongoing maintenance.For any of your lawn needs, why not contact us today.