You may be aware that lawnmowers allow the user to adjust cutting distance, but do you know why this is? If not, you may be doing damage to your lawn every time you mow.
Why Mowing Height Matters
Mower blade height is an oft-ignored but nonetheless essential component in lawn turf health. If your blade is set too high, it won’t trim enough of your grass to be effective, but if it’s set low, it can impede blade growth and make your lawn look bald. When mower blades are set at the correct height, they take off the tips of the leaves, which actually encourages the grass to sprout new growth and fill in as a thick, beautiful carpet.
It may seem like common sense to set your mower blade as low as possible; after all, the shorter your grass is, the more time you’ll have before you cut it again. This is technically true, but if you’re trying to save time and labor, this is actually not a good technique. When you give your lawn a buzz cut, you make it easier for weeds to take root, and it’s also harder for grass to retain moisture, which is a major concern in Southern California. In the long run, you’ll end up having to spend more time and effort bringing your lawn back to health than you would if you just mowed a bit more frequently with a higher blade.
Finding Your Ideal Blade Height
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to mower blade height. Proper mowing height is determined by the type of grass you have, not the mower itself. It’s not just the general species variety that matters, either. Different types of the same grass variety can have dramatically different mowing heights. Some grass types even have a blade height range of 2 inches or more.
When your recommended blade height includes a range of several height options, you may want to shoot for the middle and see how that works out. If your lawn looks healthier and neat after a few mows, you’re on the right track. If it seems either too shaggy or too bald, you can adjust up or down accordingly.
If you aren’t sure what kind of grass you have, you can call in a qualified landscape or lawn care professional to assess the situation and make a recommendation. It’s worth the effort to find out so you can take the best-possible care of your lawn.