In Australia, lawn mowing can almost be considered a competitive sport! If having the best lawn in the street is your goal, then you first need to be armed with the right tools and know-how.
Depending on your lawn type, you may have to provide that little extra bit of TLC to get that emerald green, perfectly manicured backyard you’ve been dreaming of. But don’t worry - all of our lawn tips & techniques can be easily applied whether you’re a mowing novice or lawn expert!
1. Get the right mowing height for your lawn type
Mowing your lawn too short all at once can result in brown grass or bare patches since a severe cut depletes your lawn’s energy reserves. The general rule of thumb is to never cut more than ⅓ of the leaf blade at any one time. This will leave enough green on the grass blades to maintain health and protect your lawn from the sun’s rays.
Some lawn types may require different mowing heights. Here at Coolabah Turf, we provide instant turf varieties that are low-maintenance and have a wide range of mowing height options. They are happy if they are mown slightly shorter during the summer months and kept slightly longer during the winter months for best results year round, no matter the season. Specifically, we would recommend the following heights when mowing:
Couch (Nullarbor or Tif Tuf): 5 to 30mm
Buffalo grass (Sir Walter DNA Certified Buffalo): 30 to 50mm
Kikuyu (Eureka Premium VG): 25 to 50mm
Zoysia Matrella (Sir Grange): 5 to unmown
Mowing frequency is an important aspect of maintaining a healthy lawn, so be sure to consider the amount you are willing to mow when choosing a turf variety. Some types of grass require more frequent mowing than others.
2. Work with the seasons
Did you know that every season calls for its own lawn care regime? Depending on the season, you may find that your lawn will perform differently and will require other types of maintenance to keep it looking lush all year round.
In the warmer months of spring and summer, your lawn will have come out of its winter dormancy. This is the time to mow more regularly as the leaf blades enter their growing season. Just remember to aerate the soil and remove any dead material/thatch from the lawn prior to mowing. This will help to increase air, water, and nutrients in your soil for maximum growth. If possible, avoid cutting your lawn in the heat of the day as this will likely damage freshly mowed grass.
In the cooler months of autumn and winter, lawn growth slows down - so we advise mowing less frequently during these months. It’s also important to raise your mowing height so that your grass stays higher and denser. Keeping the mowing height high will give your lawn the best chance to absorb sunlight and nutrients. This will also help to insulate the soil and prep it for the shorter daylight hours. Always mow your lawn when it’s dry, as mowing wet grass will tear rather than cut the blades. And make sure you pick up all leaves and grass clippings to allow the grass to receive as much sunlight as it can throughout the cooler months when sunlight can be limited.
3. Keep your mower blades sharp
Mowing your lawn regularly will do more harm than good if you’re mowing with blunt blades. Blunt mower blades often tear and damage the grass blade rather than cut it. Think of it as a barber cutting your hair with blunt scissors! It will leave your lawn scalped rather than cut, resulting in damaged grass that is left even more vulnerable to weather stress, weeds, and pesky insects. Not to mention a tired, shaggy, and lacklustre lawn that definitely will not be the envy of the street!
Before you mow your lawn, check your mower blades to ensure they are sharp before each use. You can have your blades sharpened professionally, which will ensure a perfect cut every time. 4. Have fun with it!
As much as we love some healthy competition, mowing your lawn and keeping it well-maintained should remain enjoyable! While these tips & tricks will help keep your lawn in its optimum condition, there’s no real right or wrong way to mowing your lawn. A lot of it - such as mowing height and frequency - comes down to personal preference as well as how fast your lawn type grows. A lawns growth rate (and therefore mowing frequency) is directly related to how much you water and fertilise your lawn. So if you feel like you are mowing your lawn more often than you are happy to - back off the water a little bit and reduce frequency of fertiliser application rates.
If you’re a lawn enthusiast and really want that ‘wow factor’, there are different types of lawn mowers available that can more easily achieve that manicured effect. Typically, cylinder mowers are great for creating that fine bowling green cut. You can also use either a cylinder mower or rotary mower to create a criss-cross pattern in the grass. To achieve those mowing stripes, simply mow the grass then use a roller to push the grass blades over in the opposite direction. It takes hardly any effort and looks like a masterpiece when finished. Play around with different patterns, and let your lawn reflect your own taste and personality!
If you need any mowing advice or assistance feel free to drop us a line!