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How Short Should I Cut My Lawn?

If you’ve ever asked yourself how short should you cut your lawn without damaging it, you’ve got the right mindset. However, the answer to your question may not be so straightforward. It depends on a variety of factors including the type of grass, the season, and how frequently you mow. To help you understand what your lawn needs to thrive all year round, we have prepared several landscape maintenance tips for homeowners in Sonoma County.

Landscape Maintenance Services in Sonoma County

The Type of Grass

Although it may not seem like much having to mow your front lawn every now and then, it may turn out to be harmful to the grass. Like any other plant, grass has different needs depending upon its growth, and figuring out the kind that grows on your lawn is key. Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass are just two examples of the kinds that grow in cooler climates and should be mowed 2.5 inches to 4.5 inches depending upon the time of year. The shorter mow height in the late fall through early Spring allows for more light and heat to the base of the blades while the longer heights in the summer serve to keep the base of the blades cooler. Grasses like Bermuda and Zoysia typically grow in warmer climates and are best kept between 1 and 2 inches. Some hybrids can be mowed to ½ inch (putting greens) – but these will need a reel type mower as opposed to the more typical rotary/horizontal blade machines. As a general rule, do not mow more than 1/3 of the total leaf surface no matter the time of year.

Don’t Cut Too Low

If you believe in cutting the grass too low so that you don’t have to mow your lawn as often, you may be unknowingly damaging your lawn’s health. This doesn’t only stress out your grass, but can also reduce its density making your lawn prone to weeds and potentially even sun scalding. Having longer, healthy grass blades keeps weeds away as thick, nourished blades keep sunlight from reaching them. Weeds like crabgrass and foxtail grow in sparse, poor performing areas because they get ample sunlight. Mowing too low can also cause scalping where so much is cut that you remove the crown of the plants exposing the roots. This commonly occurs when mowing too low on an uneven lawn area or where thatch has been allowed to accumulate.

Setting A Flexible Mowing Frequency

Having the grass too short can invite as many problems as can having long grass. Weeds are typically shown to grow in areas where the grass is cut too close to the ground, whereas having longer grass invites mosquitos and critters which can quickly become nuisances. We advise finding a schedule based on the climate, season, and current weather conditions. Keep in mind that your goal is to mow at the lower height range during cool portions of the year and at the higher end during the warm season.

We offer the best landscape maintenance services in Sonoma County and have

years of experience to help keep your landscaping in the best condition possible. It may take some experimenting and a little bit of trial and error to figure out what keeps your lawn healthy, but it is totally worth the effort. For guidance, you can call Gardenworks at (707) 857-2050.


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