How to mow a new lawn

Golden rule of mowing any lawn

The most important thing to know about mowing a lawn, is that cutting too aggressively can weaken the grass plant, inhibit growth and sometimes damage the plant beyond repair, therefore the golden rule is to never cut more than a third of the length of the grass plant away.

Top tip:

Always remember to check the height setting on your lawnmower before you start!

Mowing new turf

Mowing a new lawn - Hallstone Direct Advice BlogBefore harvesting, Hallstone turf has generally been kept to a mown length of 25mm. There isn’t a set timeframe to adhere to for the first mow after a new lawn has been laid. It is more dependent on how quickly the grass has grown. If the weather has been particularly warm a new lawn may need mowing as early as 2-3 days after laying.

Many people wait too long before giving a lawn its first cut. To maintain a lawn height of approximately 25mm it is worth carrying out a first mow when the grass reaches a length of 30-35mm; to maintain a height of 35mm, wait a little longer, until it is roughly 45mm long.

Important note:

If using a rotary mower (one long blade underneath the mower that rotates at a high speed) rather than a cylinder mower, check that the turf has rooted into the soil below before starting to cut; this is because the speed of the rotary mower’s blade can lift the turf.

What length should the grass be mown to?

The desired length of a lawn is entirely personal, but it’s unlikely that anyone would want a lawn height to be any shorter than 25mm. If the ground isn’t perfectly level, any bumps or divots could cause ‘scalping’ of the turf when the cutting height is set any lower than this. The leafy green part of the grass plant can tolerate the sun fairly well, but the paler section of the plant near the soil is sensitive to sunlight, therefore cutting a height that is too short can expose this tender part of the plant causing it to turn yellow and perhaps eventually die.

Top tip:

For anyone who is uncomfortable judging lengths by sight, use a 10p or 2p coin as a grass height guide; a 10p coin has a diameter of 24.5mm and a 2p coin is 25.9mm.

How often should a lawn be mown?

A lawn needs to be mown when it has reached a certain height, rather than routinely.

Once the lawn is at the required length, set your mower accordingly to maintain the height, just remember to never remove more than a third of the grass plants on each cut, as doing so can cause permanent damage.

A lawn needs to be mown more often during late spring and summer, as they will grow more quickly than in the cooler months. As temperatures drop again, typically from mid-late September, grass plants become dormant – meaning there is no further growth – and the lawn won’t need to be mown at all until the warmer weather returns.

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