Professional Lawn care tips
Updated: Nov 21, 2019
A good looking lawn is no accident, it takes proper feeding, good cutting and a little effort and understanding of what makes a healthy grass plant.
At BCH Gardens we want to see more of the fantastic looking lawns that we know are possible. Actually we would really love to meet fellow lawn enthusiasts. We cut somewhere between 25 and 30 acres per week during an average summer, so we see enough lawns and the results of grass cutting in different conditions to really know what works. Below are some of our lawn mowing tips which we hope will help you have a healthier lawn.
Cutting grass needs SHARP blades to make a clean cut.
Sharpen your mower blades after about 8 hours - that probably means daily for a professional lawn service! A sharp blade produces cleaner cuts, which result in less stress on the grass and quicker recovery. Blunt blades result in more disease and leaves a white colour across the lawn - its a dead give away to an experienced eye that blades are dull.
Cutting your lawn really short so you don't have to cut it so often.
Seriously would you do this to a rose bush or an apple tree? I don't think so? This is what I call the "Lazy hard way"and is about the worst thing you can do to a lawn. You will find it counter productive, because the lawn will use all its energy to produce more badly needed leaves. A lawn cut like this will almost certainly have very bad moss and lots of weeds sooner rather than later. It is also possible to bend the crank shaft of a lawn mower by cutting so low. Cutting higher, and more often should be quicker, easier and produce a better looking lawn!
When you sharpen your blades, scrape the old grass out of the mower deck.
Lawn mowers need air to be moving through the cutting area - lots of air- to work well. Cleaning the deck out will not only make the mower work better, but last longer.
Did I mention that you need SHARP blades - its really important.
I recommend you have your blades sharpened at least three times during the lawn mowing season. Thats about every second month based upon cutting grass for about an hour once a week.
The rule of thirds:- Cut one third into two thirds.
Its that simple. If your grass is 150mm (6") tall then cut off 50mm (2") More than this is not good for the grass plant,causing extra stress. Want the grass shorter? Then cut it more often and reduce the height gradually.
Whats the right height to cut a lawn?
Hmmm good question. Only removing one third of the length then 40 - 65mm or ~1.5" -2.5" is about right in this area! Less than this and you will typically cut into the crown of the plant removing all its leaves and the lawn will look beige or straw coloured. You also increase the risk of scalping. Note "about right" is key above, as it depends on grass type, mower type, and other factors like weather and the outlook of your lawn.
To collect or not to collect that is the question.
Wether tis' nobler in the mind to suffer the tedious long walks to the compost heap or to mulch like a real pro' This is really simple to answer. If you have a mower designed to mulch then do so - you are returning organic matter and nutrients to the soil. I promise a better lawn for this. If your mower is not made to mulch, then you must collect clippings or you will contribute rapidly to a thatch layer, create dead spots, encourage disease and have a lawn that looks awful with brown patches of rotting grass.
If in doubt increase cutting height.
In periods of drought, cold or shorter daylight - it will help the grass deal with the extra environmental stress.
Change your mowing direction.
Always mowing the same way opens up the sward and allows weeds into the turf. Change direction every few cuts, and do not use the long easy direction too much. Your lawn looks good cut longways, but it seldom looks its best! Get a pattern going. We like a diamond chequer, but a plaid pattern is good. Look some up on google and see the tip above about what height to cut, the more grass leaf the better the pattern will show......
Feed your lawn once in a while
A lawn is a living thing and needs proper nutrition to be at its best. Fertilising a lawn needn't be all that expensive and can make the grass look so much more green and lush.
Ask us about having a soil test done, then we can tell you exactly what fertiliser to use to really boost the look of your lawn.
Enjoy your mow.
If it feels like a chore then something probably isn't right! It should be reasonably easy, light exercise, that lets you enjoy your garden. I have a beer and listen to a podcast or audiobook at the same time.
Want to have a chat about your lawn or have a question answered? Is there some other aspect of your lawn you are worried about? Mail us using the form below, we will try to offer you help and advice. Describe your service as "lawn care advice" and you will get our immediate attention.