If you are having a beat up lawn, or weather has not been your friend with your lawn, or if you’ve noticed dry brown patches in your yard, than the University of Illinois has some tips for you. U of I Extension Horticulture Educator Chris Enroth says that there are three things you can do to keep your lawn beautiful with minimum effort. Mow high, mow often, and keep mower blades sharp.
While mowing it short may help you mow less, Enroth would argue that that actually hurts your lawn more than it helps.
Plants feed themselves through photosynthesis and this takes place in the leaves, but when you remove the plant's food source, it must grow faster and deplete more energy to make up for the loss. Turf-type grass likes to be 3 ½ to 4 ½ inches, while Kentucky Bluegrass should be 3 inches.
There are some studies that show that when more than 1/3 of the leaf blade is removed during one mowing, this stresses out the grass plant. Stressed lawns will be attacked by weeds more, see more disease, and bring more insects.
Sharpening your blade can help create smaller cuts on the grass leaf. A dull blade can beat, shred, and tear at a grass blade, and that can create a ragged appearance to your lawn and allow more opportunities for disease and take more time and energy to heal. A dull blade can also make your mower work harder.
For more information on lawn care, visit the U of I Extension Office Facebook page, or their website.