Mowing

MY Grass ISN’T Greener Over HERE!

 

burning-question-mark.jpg

Welcome back to the Wonderful World of Weed Man!  This week we have an addendum to our ‘The Grass IS Greener Over There!’ series.  We thought we said all we could say on the subject, and we thought wrong.  It became apparent to me, that we sometimes will get questions on why a homeowner’s lawn just isn’t greening up like they hoped.

Though, uncommon, we do hear a customer say, “My lawn looks worse than my neighbors!  We do exactly what they do!”  Or, “My lawn was WAY better last year, and I’m not doing anything differently than before.”  The frustration is audible, and understandable.  Time, effort, money go into making your lawn beautiful and the results are less than expected.  The bottom line is that you just want your lawn to be healthy and look great!

So what happens when you do everything the same year in and year out and the lawn just isn’t as good as you remember it from its glory days?  What do you do when you do everything right and the grass just isn’t greener?  It’s easy to question the product you are using on the lawn, or even the professional service being used on the lawn.  That’s natural, and even warranted in some instances.  However, not all lawns are the same.  There are also, MANY, MANY variables that play are part in the overall health of your lawn, it may not be the product or professional service that is causing the problem.

It’s important to ask yourself what might be different this year?  Are the kids playing in the sprinklers more or less this year?  Are there any new pets in the household?  Any new animals in the neighborhood?  Have you seen an abundance of wild bunnies in your neighborhood recently?  What is different this year versus last year?

The question being asked may not have a quick or simple answer.  In fact, more often than not – ‘doing the same thing as last year’ turns out to not be as similar as one might think.  Many factors that affect the lawn are rarely the same year in and year out.  To better understand why a lawn might not be up to par, I wanted to talk about some of the outside influences that can affect the health and beauty of your lawn.

Neatly cut grass

Neatly cut grass. Full frame short with wide depth of field.

Fertilizer

Some products are not designed for long term results.  They are designed for color over health.  They will make your lawn green, but not necessarily healthy.  Are you using the exact same product you used in the past or did you switch products?  Is your neighbor using the same product? Not all fertilizers are equal.  Timing is important as well.  Some fertilizers will only last a few weeks, some 6-8 weeks, and others 8-12 weeks.  Watering, soil temperatures, and coating are all factors in the breakdown process of fertilizers.  A fertilizer that lasts 8-12 weeks will tend to run out towards the 8-week mark during the heat of the summer due to the warmer soil temps and increase in watering.  Is your lawn a little overdue for fertilizer?

Soil Type/Conditions

It’s easy to see on the surface if a lawn is doing well or not, however the soil under the surface has an important role in the life of your lawn.  Like fertilizer, not all soils are the same.  Your neighbor might have a claylike soil.  You could have a sandy soil.  Clay soils hold nutrients better, but drain poorly.  Sandy soils are the exact opposite.  Even year to year your soil conditions can change.  Clay soils, since they drain poorly become compact more often.  Did you aerate last year?  This year?  Never aerated?

Mowing

Are you using a mowing company or doing it yourself? Did you sharpen the mower blade this year?  Are you mowing more often when sunlight is on the lawn 16 hours a day which causes it to grow like crazy?  Or letting it grow crazy and then cutting it down really short, stressing your lawn out.

Are you mowing at the same time of day? I have different schedules for work throughout the year so it affects when I can mow my lawn sometimes.  Mowing in the early morning when the lawn is wet is not recommended.  Mowing later in the evening when it is cool is not a good option either.  Your lawn is more susceptible to disease and fungus at night.  When you mow the lawn, it basically has an open wound.  Just what disease and fungus like!

If you are hiring a mowing company, are you using the same one?  Are they mowing at the same time?  Are they mowing at the correct height and frequency for your lawn and the time of year?  Are they sharpening their mower blades regularly?  Do they have a new mowing technician?  Do they regularly clean their equipment?  It’s important to keep in mind that a mower can unknowingly bring in disease from another lawn as well.

Watering

Watering your lawn, is not as simple as turning the timer to the ‘ON’ position and letting it be.  In fact, if you are doing that assuming that last years’ times were adequate, then you have just pinpointed the problem.  How you water in September/October will be different than how you water in March/April and different still for July.

Assuming you have the correct length of time and frequency for the time of year in which you are watering.  You need to consider whether or not others in the neighborhood are watering at the same time.  Are more neighbors watering at the same time this year vs last year resulting in lower pressure. Lower pressure means less water on the lawn in the same length of watering time.

Are you watering during the heat of the day when the water can evaporate up 50% before penetrating into the soil?  Are all your areas getting adequate coverage when the sprinklers are on?  Do you need a sprinkler system tune-up?  Have you checked out the sprinkler system yourself or are you trusting that the watering at 3 am when you are sleeping is working like it’s supposed to.

Weather – This is a variable that is completely out of everyone’s control.  Weather affects your lawn SIGNIFICANTLY.  In fact, it is probably the largest contributing factor for a lawn looking great one year, and not so great the next.  The Treasure Valley, last year, had the hottest June on record since 1869.  We saw temps in June we normally see in July.  That is stressful for the lawn.

This year it is drastically different.  We did have some warm days this month, but lots of cooler than normal days too. We went from a high of 101 to a high of 62 in 7 days.  7 days with a 40-degree variance in the high!  When you extend the highest high to the lowest low that week you went from 101 to 37 in a 7-day period.  Almost a 65-degree variant.  Plants do not like that much of a variance.  It can drastically affect them.   Watering for 100-degree weather is vastly different than watering for 62-degree weather.  Without any effort on your part you may have went from under watering to overwatering within a week, just from not noticing the weather.

Just taking temperature into account it affects how you need to water, and if you aren’t watering to the weather/season you can easily run into lawn issues.  This doesn’t factor in wind, humidity, dew point, or rainfall.

InsectsLawn damaging insects do not respect property lines or lawn history.  Unfortunately, grubs do not care if they have never visited your lawn before.  You don’t have a lot of control in this circumstance other than applying a preventative grub control.  This might be the difference you are seeing in your lawn this year.

Education – What you know about lawn care definitely affects how well your lawn looks.  If you are not very knowledgeable, it can be easy to assume that you are doing everything correct, and there has been no change, therefore the results should be the same.  The exact opposite can be true as well.  Perhaps you know quite a bit about lawn care.  Perhaps you have been doing the same thing for years and it always looks ok, except this year.  Sometimes doing the same thing might be slowly, slightly, damaging your lawn over time.  Perhaps you break a watering rule or a mowing rule.  Just one rule, but it’s broken continually because it never caused a problem in the past.  Shallow frequent watering and short mowing will train your grass roots to sit near the surface and one day your lawn will struggle to grow.

 

If your lawn is not looking the way it used to, you need to figure out what is different.  We bring these variants up, not to shift blame from us a service provider.  We are extremely confident in our products, training, and technicians.   We bring these variables up, because as the expert, we understand what affects your lawn.  It may be something little and easy to fix.

Asking and answering these questions will show you where your lawn might need a little extra help.  Remember, your lawn is a living organism.  It’s easy to talk about on paper, not as easy to treat in real life.  The best question you can ask is:  Did I follow all of Weed Man’s recommendations to have an amazingly beautiful lawn?  If you did, then you would have hired us, in which all you have to do is call us!  We will do a free lawn inspection to determine what is going on with your lawn, so you don’t have to figure it out yourself!

www.weedmanboise.com 208-888-9911 #wecareforyourlawn

Weed Man Updated Logo

Mulch Much?

lawn-mower-938555_960_720.jpg

Welcome back to the Wonderful World of Weed Man!  We are nearing the end of our ‘The Grass IS Greener Over There!’ series.  We have journeyed through the instrumental practices of a healthy and beautiful lawn and have a few remaining stops.  This week’s adventure stop will help answer the question of mulching or bagging the lawn clippings!  Unbeknownst to the average homeowner there is a raging debate within the industry regarding this topic.  OK!, perhaps it really isn’t raging, nor is there a real debate – I just wanted to create some drama to capture your interest!  Let us move forward with a little less ‘creative license’ on our subject.

Mulch or Bag?  While the question is not overly complicated, it definitely can be too simplified in reasoning what to choose.  Before I was educated on the topic, I would choose based on how lazy I felt.  Unfortunately, I was doing myself a disservice by thinking it was that simple.

Mulch – what is it?  As it pertains to your lawn, simply stated, it consists of grass clippings from the mowed lawn.  The cut blades can be sliced into fine pieces that fall easily onto the top surface of the soil.  Soil microorganism will help break the mulch down and reintroduce nutrients back into the soil.

Don’t grass clippings cause thatch buildup? No – It’s a common misconception that thatch is just grass clippings that do not get broken down in the lawn.  Thatch is actually a matting of stems and roots that form just below the surface of the lawn.  For more info on thatch, our last blog article touches on the subject when we wrote about aeration.

Do I need a mulching mower?  Not necessarily.  A mulching mower will help break the grass blade down into smaller pieces than a regular mower. Mulching mowers are specifically designed to limit grass clumps in the lawn.  Nevertheless, a regular mower will do the trick as well, if you mow often enough, or are only cutting a small amount at a time.

So when should I mulch?

  • When you want to provide extra nutrients back into the soil. Some experts will tell you that if you mulch all year, it is equivalent to an extra application of fertilizer on the lawn.
  • Increase organic matter in your soil
  • Save time and effort! When you mulch you don’t have to spend extra time collecting and disposing of clippings.
  • If you prefer not to add to landfills with grass that can be easily broken down naturally in your own lawn.

When should I bag clippings?

  • When you prefer the look of a ‘clean’ lawn. Typically mulching, when done properly, will not leave much of a visible footprint.  Whatever is left behind breaks down fairly quickly though.  Grass is 85% water, it won’t take much for it to dry up and disappear.
  • Bag, when your lawn is overrun with weeds. You don’t want to run the risk of putting more weed seeds down into your lawn.
  • Bag your lawn when the grass is wet or too long, as it won’t break down quickly and will leave piles of grass or clumps on the lawn. This will also make it difficult for existing grass to grow, breath, or get sunshine.
  • Bag if you want to start a compost pile that can be used in other areas of your garden.

If you are like me, there are appropriate times to bag and appropriate times to mulch.  I really like to bag my lawn during the seasons that I want to add mulch to my garden areas.  Sometimes it’s just quicker to mulch the lawn if I need to get it done before an incoming rainstorm!   Bagging during the fall is also a great way to cleanup leaves in your lawn with minimal effort.  I also like to bag my lawn clippings, when my lovely wife tells me to!

Really whether you bag or mulch, the choice is up to you.  Doing one practice over the other will not cause death and destruction to your lawn.  If you have a preference and it is working for you, great!  Now you may have further reason to stick with it, or consider changing your particular practice.  Either way, in the immortal words of G.I.JOE, ‘now you know, and knowing is half the battle.’

Weed Man Updated Logo

 

 

 

Amazon Goat Rental? or Mow It Yourself!

billy-goat

Welcome back to The Wonderful World of Weed Man!  Our hope is to continue Lawn Care education through our blog.  If this blog helps you learn how to have an amazing lawn, then we have done our job!  This article continues our ‘The Grass IS Greener Over There!’ series.  If you are just joining us, you can click on the link and catch up on any of our previous articles.  Our most recent article, ‘If You Don’t Wash Your Lawn It Will Get Dirty’ was all about successful watering habits to make sure you have the most efficient watering habits.

This week we will continue on with mowing practices!   Before we get to far in, I wanted to point out that I discovered Amazon will rent you goats to come and ‘mow’ your lawn.  You can see for yourself right here!  Amazon has just increased a level of impressiveness in my opinion.  For those that prefer not to traipse through goat droppings when they are having fun in their lawn, the old fashioned modern mower usually will do the trick.

We have touched on mowing in a couple articles in the past:  We touched on a very basic set of mowing practices in a blog entry earlier in the year, and covered the mechanics of mower startup earlier in this series as well.  I would like to delve further into mowing practices and expand on what has already been covered.   Mowing is a VITAL part of the success and health of your lawn.

 One person will spend more time mowing a lawn per season than any other aspect of lawn care. 

Fertilizer, Weed Control, and various other lawn aspects of taking care of a lawn require far less time to invest then what is spent on mowing.  If you are spending all that time and energy mowing your lawn, you definitely want to see great results for your efforts.   For those of you who despise mowing your lawn, let me give you some benefits that hopefully will help you realize it is worth your time:

Stronger Grass – only the strongest grass blades left after mowing will heal and improve and the weakest blades will be left in the dust.  The more often you cut your lawn, the healthier/stronger it will be.

Uniform Growth – when you mow the lawn, it brings all blades to a uniform level.  This in turn means that there will be a more even distribution of water and sunlight – which will help the lawn grow more consistent and uniform all around.  You will still get areas that grow at a greater rate than others, but you will see less and less of this over time.

Aesthetically Pleasing – a well-manicured lawn just looks great!  It does!  The curb appeal of your home is important – it is the first impression of your home.  We have been told over our entire lifetime not to judge a book by its cover, unfortunately that is what we do as humans.  We are constantly judging upon first impression.  Make your home’s first impression a great one!

Exercise – mowing benefits you personally.  For every hour of mowing you burn on average 300 calories.  That milk shake you just bought from Sonic will only take you two hours of mowing to burn off!  If you hate mowing and are on a diet, just think of how many times you have to mow the lawn to burn off that meal you want to eat.  It may help motivate you to slim down in more ways than one.

Upon discovering the importance of mowing and resigning yourself to the fact that it must be done, how should you go about it?  Here is a set of principles you need to be aware of throughout the mowing season:

First Mowing – your first mowing is less about a specific date, and more about the state of your lawn in the spring.  Even in the same neighborhood, two homeowners may start mowing at different times of the spring.  You want to monitor the length of your grass, and mow it when it reaches a specific height – 3.5” – 4”.  Then cut it down to a height of 2.5”-3”.  Remember our 1/3 rule.  Cut no more than 1/3 of the blade at a time.  I’ve seen articles where the ‘weekend gardener’ says to cut cool season grasses down to 2”.  Depending on your grass type, this will damage your lawn.  Kentucky Bluegrass, Perennial Rye-grass, Tall Fescue (prominent grasses in the Treasure Valley) should all be cut down to 2.5”-3.5”.  Never trust ‘professional’ advice from a person whose title by definition identifies themselves as an amateur lawn hobbyist.   Once the lawn is cut the first time of the year, it will promote growth in the semi dormant lawn and help wake it up for the year.

Raising and Lowering your Mower – Your mower deck, at any given point during the year should be no lower than 2.5” from the ground.  If you mow too short the grass will be damaged and more prone to weakness.  The grass has to expend a large amount of nutrients to try and repair itself.  Vital nutrients it needs to defend itself against drought, disease, insects, and even weeds.  Crab grass in particular has an easier time invading a lawn when the grass is cut too short.  The best way to measure this is to find a flat surface (driveway or sidewalk) and use a ruler/tape measure and measure up from the concrete to the lower lip of the mower deck –

g-green-up-lawn-mower-height.jpg

Mow Different Heights at Different Times – During the cooler seasons of the year (Spring, Fall) you want to have a little shorter lawn than during the hot summers.  If you keep it at 2.5”-3” while it is cooler, this will help keep out some of the cooler seasons diseases like rust and powdery mildew.  This helps the soil dry out the top layer in a shorter period of time to prevent disease.  When the warm temps of summer roll around you would then raise your mowing height to 3.5” – 4”.  A taller grass blade will help shade the soil so the top layer of soil does not dry out too quickly in the triple digit temps.  A taller blade will also help block sun from germinating weeds that are particularly troublesome in the summer.  Crab Grass, Spurge and other summer annuals have a harder time invading lawns with a taller grass.

Keep Your Blade Sharp – I often run into people who love the smell of fresh cut grass.  The stronger the better they say.  It is important to realize that the particular smell the grass makes when it is cut, is in fact a defensive chemical secretion grass makes when it is stressed or damaged.  The grass thinks it is being attacked by an insect and sends a chemical signal out that other parasitic insects will sense and come looking to eat the original insects.  The stronger the smell, the more damage has been done to the blade.  This is typical when you have a dull mower blade.  It is ripping the grass instead of cutting.  It takes more energy and resources to heal itself then if the cut was clean.

blades

  • Grass A = A sharp mower blade
  • Grass B = Very DULL mower blade
  • Grass C = Semi Dull Blade ripping grass
  • Grass D = Blade that has been dull for some time and been continually used on same lawn.

Mulching – if you mow often enough and keep the 1/3 rule in mind you should be able to mulch every time and not see the ‘buildup of hay’ most people think of when they think of mulching.  If the clippings are little they absorb easily back into the lawn without seeing them very much and it is greatly beneficial to do so.  If you mulched all year, it would be equivalent to a full application of fertilizer on your lawn.  That is a lot of nutrients most people throw away each year.

Best Time to Mow – The best time to mow, is similar to the best time to water.  Mornings.  If you mow during the heat of the day, your lawn will be unnecessarily stressed out.  If you mow at evening/night, there is not enough time for your lawn to heal itself before it is introduced to and environment that disease and fungus thrive in.  It will be more prone to disease and damage if you mow at less than ideal times.

Last Mowing – similar to the first mowing, the last mowing is less about a date and more about the state of your lawn.  As long as your lawn is still growing, you still want to mow.  If you don’t mow towards the end of the year and end up with a lawn 3.5” or taller you run the risk of inviting snow mold/winter mold into your lawn.  This occurs when, again the top layer of soil cannot dry out.  As long as it is growing, keep mowing!

Following these principles will help you maintain your lawn and keep it beautiful and green all throughout the growing season!  If you have questions about mowing, don’t hesitate to call us for advice.  If you can’t or don’t want to mow your lawn yourself, let us know.  Though we do not mow lawns as part of our services, we can definitely recommend a great mower to you!

Spring Mower Maintenance!

ReelMower.png

 

Once again, WELCOME TO THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF WEED MAN!  Again, I’m Brian, and I will be your guide.  This is the first of a series of posts we will be updating throughout next weeks/months to better educate you on lawn care.  If you are curious as to what I am writing about – get up to date with last week’s blog adventure:

We really want to help you have an amazing lawn!  You can always take a look at our website for tips and advise, however we would like to get a little more in depth through this blog on lawn subjects.  This week we will begin our education on those magical machines known as lawn mowers!

I looked at my lawn this week and as my lawn is waking up from the rain, sunshine, and warmer temps – I realize it is time to mow my lawn.  It looks much like my first attempt at growing a beard!  Patchy and full in some areas – but never uniform.  It’s time for my lawn’s shave, or haircut if you will.

Scheduling some time for myself this week to look at my mower and make sure it is ready this weekend is the first step to getting ready for the mowing season.   (For parents of young children, it is also time to do maintenance on Bubble Mowers)

Mowers, like all machines, need a scheduled maintenance to get the best performance.   Every mower is a little different and I recommend consulting your mower’s operational manual to determine what maintenance schedule is needed for you.  Regardless – remember to be safe when dealing with engines!

Despite the specifics that vary from brand to brand, model to model – there are 5 universal tasks you should be aware of when doing mower maintenance every year:

  1.  Change the oil – Engines that utilize oil need a regular changing of the oil, filters.  The longevity of your mower is dependent upon this maintenance.  I learned the hard and costly way that you cannot ignore this.
  2. Sharpen your mower blade – This actually may need to be down several times a year.  If your mower blade is dull, the engine has to work harder to cut the grass.  In fact, it really isn’t cutting the grass at all when it is dull.  It’s ripping the grass.  Imagine if someone cut your beard that way- by ripping it.  That sounds too biblical for a lawn analogy. Just sharpen your blade! Here is a great YouTube video on how to sharpen your mower blade.  (This is not an endorsement of the video producer.  We cannot verify the safety of prescribed actions.  Please use common sense, do your research, and when in doubt hire a professional to help you with sharpening your mower blade.  SAFETY FIRST!)
  3. Tighten everything up.  Check all the bolts, shield, and belts to make certain they are tight and where they should be in relation to factory specifications.
  4. Clean your mower.  You definitely want to clean your mower for a few reasons.  The filters and screens will help your mower perform at peak performance.  Cleaning out the stuck grass in the blade area is a great practice to do as well.  AGAIN PLEASE use common sense with safety in mind when dealing with your mower.  Lastly a clean mower means gas leaks have been washed up.  Gas in your grass is never a good thing if you want a green uniform lawn.  Don’t forget to fill up your mower with new gas as well.  If your mower has sat longer than a month, old gas will clog up the carburetor.
  5. Spark plugs – Clean and check your spark plugs so your mower starts and runs well.  Replace if needed.

I hope this helps you get ready for this year and again, when in doubt use a professional.  Check out your local small engine repair shops for further assistance.

For further information or lawn tips regarding mowing take a look at our earlier blog post.

Happy Mowing!

 

19108395379_cb12fbe1a6_b.jpg

 

 

The Grass IS Greener Over There!

Fertilization.JPG

Welcome to the wonderful world of Weed Man!  I’m Brian and I will be your guide!  We started this blog to help inform and educate our customers so they will get the most out of their lawns.  Whether you are a Weed Man customer or not, you are welcome here, and we hope you gain something by your visits.  This week I would like to overview where we are headed in the near future – lawn care tips!

It happens…you work hard on your lawn.  You spend countless hours and untold amounts of money to get the results you want to no avail.  Your neighbors lawn looks amazing and you just can’t seem to match the deep green lawn that he has.  On the other hand your other neighbor has a black thumb with a degree in growing weeds…that like to invade your lawn.

Just before you give in and give up let us offer some advice!  Sure you could hire a professional – Weed Man Boise, in particular.  We would love that!  Nevertheless, even Weed Man customers are given the expectation that achieving and maintaining a great lawn is really a partnership.  So whether you take the professional lawn guide approach or DIY approach we would like to help you have an amazing lawn.

Over the next weeks, we will be detailing how you can have an AMAZING lawn your neighbors will be joyously talking about.  (They may talk anyways, but lets be honest, nobody wants to be the black thumb homeowner who specializes in weeds.)

We have 11 tips for lawn care that every homeowner should be aware of:

  1. Mower Startup
  2. Fertilization
  3. Sprinkler Startup/Maintenance
  4. Over seeding/Lawn Repair
  5. Weed Control
  6. Watering Practices
  7. Mowing to the Season
  8. Bug Care
  9. Aerating
  10. Mulching
  11. Hire Weed Man!
  12. Addendum: I did everything you said, MY Grass ISN’T Greener Over HERE!

Each tip will have a separate posting unpacking the details of how to take advantage of each practice.  Please check back often to get updated!  We would also love to hear from you about any lawn care questions or subjects you would like discussed.  Feel free to leave a comment below and we will incorporate it in our 11 tips!

 

 

It’s Spring, Time for your Lawn’s Haircut.

Grass & Dew Background

After a long period of hibernation the process of waking up commences.  The sun creeps up over the morning horizon.  Shining brightly, it’s rays warm up the world around. The winter has begun to thaw and the long nights are getting shorter.

I wake from my slumber and realize that the landscaping season has begun!  I’m late!  I hurriedly get ready for the work, the first day of a great season ahead.  My time off has resulted in a commonplace lethargy that makes it difficult to focus.  I scramble around trying to get ready to head out the door, but the fog in my mind is just an obstacle to a smooth start to the day.

Life.  Cereal.  My usual go to for breakfast doesn’t make for a quick task of eating while heading out the door.  I fail to notice a piece of cereal clinging desperately to the collar of my work shirt.  The silver lining, the cereal-on-my-shirt it isn’t out of place with the rest of my appearance.   During the off season ‘No Shave November’ goes into December, January, and well you know.  Apparently that soup catcher doesn’t care to stop cereal.

Zipping through traffic still fails to get me to the office on time.  I jump out of the car running to the front door and crash into when it angrily refuses to open.  Locked!  What?  Apparently it wasn’t the first day of work.  It was all a bad dream.  You see some people have that falling dream and wake up when they hit the ground…  Others have dreams where they are late and the whole day is ruined and they wake up when they hit the door.

It was a terribly silly dream to be terrified of.  Nevertheless, it does often show us how procrastination, and poor preparation lead to pathetic results.  I was reminded today of good planning by my wife.  She texted me stating that the neighbors were mowing their lawn.  It is slightly early, but it goes to show that they care about their lawn.  They are ready for the year.  They pay attention.  They prepare.

It cannot be stressed enough to make sure you have a plan for your lawn care this year.  Failing to plan and prepare for your lawn care will not result in the immediate destruction of your lawn.  However, over time, improper lawn care habits will result in spending more money on your lawn that you normally wouldn’t.  Your lawn/curb appeal of your home makes up 15% of your home’s value!  Return on investment for lawn care can be as high as 200%.  Much better return than investing in a new kitchen (I just need some place to store my Life Cereal, bowls, and spoons.  I am a little biased.)

Though it might be a week or two early for mowing, Weed Man Lawn Care has already started the fertilizer process on lawns this week.  We do not do mowing as part of our business, but knowing about mowing IS part of our business.  It is the time of year where you should be getting ready to start mowing your lawn.  It’s time for its haircut.  (Beard trimming in my case).

I wanted to leave you with some great information about mowing that will help you out this year!  It definitely seems simple, but sometimes we make it complex and the results aren’t what they should be.

  1.  Mow regularly – and at a proper height.  Depending on the type of grass you have a different mowing height may be necessary.  Kentucky Bluegrass is the most common grass type in the Boise area.  We recommend 2-3 inches in the cooler weather, and 3-4 inches in the warmer weather.  This means that if your grass is 4 or 5 inches tall cut it down to 3 inches.   This is important as your lawn roots mimic/mirror what is going on above ground.  If you cut your lawn too short, you will have stunted roots over a period of time.  They will not be able to reach deep in the ground and reach those reserves of water in the soil.  Essentially over a period of time of cutting your lawn too short you will eventually see a very unhealthy lawn.
  2. Rule of 1/3  – Never cut more than 1/3 of the grass blade at one time.  This will stress your grass out.  Much like a stressed human, it can lead to a more vulnerable immune system.  Disease, drought, insects can attack your lawn more effectively when your grass is stressed.
  3. Sharpen your blade – This is important!  Do you let your barber cut your hair with dull scissors?  How about your surgeon?  Do they cut you with a dull scalpel?  When you mow your lawn with a dull blade, it actual tears the grass instead of cutting it.  It makes it much more difficult to heal – again stressing the lawn out.
  4. Differ your pattern.  Grass can develop a ‘grain’ over time.  If you mow in the same pattern every time, it will create tracks in your lawn and just won’t look as nice.
  5. Mow when it is cool/dry.  Sometimes this is difficult in the heat of the summer.  The warmer the weather the more stressed you lawn will be when you mow it.  Definitely avoid mowing when the lawn is wet.  This is similar to mowing with a dull blade, and in fact can dull your blade over time as well.  Wet grass does not slice well, it does rip well 😦

 

When you focus and prepare for proper lawn care you will have a much healthier happier lawn!  A healthier lawn is stronger and more resistant to disease, drought, and insects. Happy mowing!

Weed Man Updated Logo