At what height is your lawnmower set? As the temperature rises, so should the height of your lawnmower. If it is set lower than 3 inches, raise it up to at least 3 inches; 3.5 or 4 is even better.
Mowing high retains more leaf surface and results in less burning. The longer grass leaves and thicker turf also increase your lawn’s ability to resist weed infestations. Shorter leaves burn faster and the thinner turf leaves open up areas that weeds move into because weeds are more hardy than tender turfgrass.
Besides the horticultural reasons for mowing high, there are also aesthetic reasons. Higher, thicker turf just looks better than short, skived surfaces. Some people set their mowers low on the misguided belief that they won’t have to mow as often. When it’s set too low, the blade takes off all the grass when you come to high spots, and you are left with no grass at all.
I like to compare turfgrass length to men’s hairstyles. The guy with a crew cut or flat top has to go to the barber more often than the guy with longer hair. That’s because some clumps of hair grow faster than the rest. The same thing happens with turfgrass.
Here are some other tips for a lush, green lawn this summer:
- Be sure your lawn receives at least an inch of water per week. If that doesn’t come in the form of rain, it needs to come in the form of irrigation. The best way to irrigate is to put down the whole inch of water at once, or no more than two watering sessions. Just sprinkling a little bit each day encourages shallow, unhealthy roots. Besides, sprinkling is too time consuming.
- If it get so hot that your lawn burns, refrain from mowing and try not to walk on the grass or you’ll break the blades of grass.
- Summer browning is your lawn’s defense mechanism. Turfgrass hibernates by going dormant. When the rain returns, the grass will green up again.
- If some patches of grass do not green up when the lawn breaks summer dormancy, rake out the dead grass. Small areas will fill in with rhizomes from the surrounding, healthy grass, but you may have to reseed larger areas.
- Don’t fertilize or apply pesticides during summer dormancy. These can do more damage than goods during this period of time.
Follow these tips and you should have a nice green lawn while others may be looking at nothing but brown.