You might be tempted to start mowing in the spring as soon as the grass starts to grow, but it’s best to consider your lawn conditions before you begin. The burst of healthy grass activity in spring will help keep your lawn lush and vibrant for the rest of the year. By timing your mowing and seeding schedule to make the most of this growth, you’ll enjoy much better results.
Ask Yourself the Following Questions to Know When to Start Mowing in the Spring
How tall is the grass? Give spring grass a chance to develop strong, healthy roots. Wait until it’s at least 2 inches tall before mowing. Stick to the rule of not taking off more than a third of its length.
How recently did you fertilize? Spring is a great time to fertilize your lawn because of its high rate of new growth. Like a child going through a growth spurt, the grass consumes nutrients at a much faster rate than normal. Both early and late spring are ideal times to fertilize. Just remember to let the grass absorb the fertilizer before cutting.
Are you overseeding this year? Overseeding is another common activity in spring. This is typically done before fertilizing, so you’ll need to set up a schedule of seeding, mowing, and fertilizing. In most cases, you’ll have to plan on not mowing until later in spring (April-May).
Where do you live? Location will have an impact on your mowing schedule. If you live where late frosts are a possibility, wait until your last frost date. Heavy spring rains are also a reason to hold off on spring mowing.
What are the freezing conditions? The freezie/thaw cycle can be rough on new grass. Mowing during freeze/thaw cycles can cause irreparable damage. If freezing is a possibility, let the grass keep growing. It’s better to let the grass get long than to cut it too short and have the frost kill it.
What are wet conditions? An unseasonably wet spring will cause a damp growth that can be difficult to mow. Mowing on wet turf can cause damage to your lawn and create safety issues. Pay close attention to the weather conditions. You may need to scale back your mowing schedule until the grass dries.
How much time do you have? Once you start, you should plan on mowing every 3-5 days to create a clean, manicured look. Waiting until you have the time for regular mowing will give you a better looking lawn.