22 February 2007

Lawn Mowing Heights for Spring Geen Up

It’s time to start getting lawns ready for Spring green up. Here in Atlanta, warm season grasses (primarily bermudas, zoysias, and centipedes are already having root activity. Cool season grasses (fescue) will be putting on growth with the rain and warming temperatures. A key component in your lawn care regimen choice of lawn mowing heights. There is the book mowing height. But, here in the Metro Atlanta area, we have special considerations. We are a bit south for ideal fescue performance, and much further north makes growing bermudas an issue.

My recommendation is to begin mowing and lowering the mowing heights going into Spring. Maintain cool season mowing heights at between 1 and 2 inches until green up is complete. Maintain fescue mowing heights at 2 ½ to 3 inches. As the season warms up gradually raise the mowing heights for bermudas, zoysias, and centipedes. Hold at about 2 ½ through the summer. For fescue, you want to be mowing at 3 to 3 ½ inches by the end of May.

Exceptions and caveats: Well-irrigated and frequently mowed bermudas and zoysias can be maintained between 1 and 2 inches. Intensely managed fescues can be maintained at between 2 ½ and 3 inches. Do not attempt to keep centipedes at very short mowing heights. However, for the average residential and commercial turf-grass, stick to the previously mentioned heights.

One key component, often over looked is equipment maintenance. If your dull blades are shredding your turf-grass leaves, no amount of mowing or height adjustments will make your lawn look good.

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