During the peak of summer your lawn may suffer from stress from the heat and dry weather. There are a few tips and tricks one should follow in order to maintain a healthy lawn in extreme heat:
Adjust Deck Height
Your lawn does better in the summer heat when you let it grow out a bit. Longer shoots mean deeper roots, which the lawn needs to suck up moisture from the soil. A shaggy lawn also shades the soil, minimizing evaporation. Therefore, your mower’s deck height is key to a healthy lawn!
During the hottest weeks, let the grass grow to about 4½ inches before mowing it to 3 to 3½ inches. When the temperature starts to dip again, you can drop back down to 2½, for a more manicured look.
Keep Blades Sharp
Sharp mower blades create a clean cut which allows the plant to heal faster, unlike dull blades, that actually tear the plant’s tissue causing the tips to turn brown. This makes your lawn more susceptible to stress and disease. In the heat of summer, the last thing you want to be doing is compromising your lawn’s health with dull mower blades.
Leave Grass Clippings
Clipping are beneficial to your lawn’s health, especially on a stressed lawn because the clippings act as slow-release fertilizers that put nutrients back into your lawn. Aim the clippings towards your lawn and not towards bodies of water, storm drains or streets.
When in Drought, Grow it Out!
If you’re experiencing a drought in your area, don’t mow if you don’t have to. Lawns under stress from drought have limited ability to recover from mowing, which can actually damage your lawn even more. NOTE: If you do mow in drought conditions, try cutting your grass after you water or a rainfall. But in order to avoid clumping and clogging your mower deck, don’t mow damp grass. Allow the plants to dry a little before you mow.
Water it in the evening.
Just like people, in extreme heat grass needs water. If possible, set up a sprinkler with a timer to come on in the evening for 15-20 minutes following the hottest days.
Cut the lawn after 3pm from June – August. Cutting grass causes it to go into shock. If you do this prior to the hot day sun, the grass may brown and die. When cutting late in the afternoon, the day is cooling down giving the grass time to recover over night.
How Low Do You Mow?
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