Blue Grass' Advice on Mowing

Mowing mature lawns follows the same rules as when you were first establishing the sod.

  • Make sure your lawn is dry enough by walking around and not leaving tracks.
  • Mow your lawn often. Never remove more than 1/3 of the growth at a time.
  • It is recommended to mow cool season grasses (e.g. blue grass or tall fescue) to a height of 2-2.5 inches. This can be increased to 3 increases in a drought to reduce stress.
  • Leave grass clippings on the lawn. Clippings add moisture and nutrients back into the soil as they decompose.
  • Vary the direction you mow to improve your turf's grain.
  • Keep your mower blades sharp to cut the grass cleanly. Sharp blades reduce the stress on the plant and helps avoid excessive moisture loss.

You should sharpen your mower blade at least twice a year.  Here’s how:

  • Remove blade from mower: Disconnect the spark plug or unplug the mower. Then turn the mower over and remove the nut that attaches the blade to the motor. Remove the blade.
  • File the blade: Stabilize the blade in a vise and use a medium file to smooth out imperfections along the blade edge (at the ends of mulching blades). Don't try to hone a sharp edge. Be sure to wear safety glasses and gloves!

  • Check for balance: After you smooth the cutting edge on both halves of the blade, check to see if the blade is balanced. If not, remove more metal from one of the halves until the blade does balance.

  • Reassemble mower: Be sure to tighten the nut securely

Mowing new sod

For more information on mowing unestablished lawns, click here.