Designing Beautiful Borders

Lawns - The last cut?

 It may be October but the weather is still mild and the grass is still growing, albeit at a slower rate. It is important to make sure you keep mowing your lawn regularly, as there will come a point in the near future, where mowing possibilities comes to an end. If at this point, you have neglected your autumn mowing duties, then you will have to put up with a shaggy, sad looking lawn until spring!

The problem with mowing at this time of the year is that the grass can remain wet until mid to late afternoon.  With the nights closing in, we may only have the weekend where we even have the time to mow, and if the weekend turns out to be wet, we are scuppered! If this cycle continues, the grass gets long and never really dries out, thus leaving you with a wet shaggy lawn to view over the winter.

So, ideally, you cut regularly and keep your grass short. If you do this through autumn, then your lawn will look ok until spring.  If however, this advice seems a little bit too late for your already long, wet lawn, then this is what I would suggest. 

Firstly, do not mow if your lawn is very wet:

  1. The grass, weighted down by the wet, will lie flat, rather than in an upright position. The grass needs to stand upright to be successfully mowed.
  2. Wet grass clippings form mushy clumps which will starve the lawn of sunlight.
  3. Mushy grass clippings will also clog up your mower. 
  4. Walking on, and running a mower over wet grass can bruise the grass blades and cause soil compaction to your lawn
  5. Mowing a very wet lawn will churn up the soil and it will look like a tractor has rolled through your garden

However, if you lawn is just a bit damp

  1. Raise your lawnmower blades to their highest level. By cutting less grass, you create fewer clippings, which reduce some of the problems mentioned above.
  2. Mow the lawn at half the speed you would normally walk
  3. If the lawn has coped ok you can always give it a second mow with a lower blade level