The end of August marks the curtain call for the summer season. Here in the Midwest, we know that the heat will continue to linger through most of September, however, at the same time fall is just around the corner. The fall months are always critical to the health of your landscaping and lawn come next spring. Therefore, homeowners need to be in the know of the best practices regarding fall do’s and don’ts — one of the biggest topics of conversation being lawn mowing.
If you mow your own lawn or have a landscaping company like us taking care of it during the summer months, you know how often a healthy lawn needs to be cut. A weekly cut is normally right, but what about when temperatures drop, precipitation falls off, and daylight hours lessen? What’s the status quo for the fall months?
Here is how to devise the right mowing plan for Missouri residents this year:
Keep Mowing Your Yard!
As fall sets in, it can be tempting to stop mowing altogether as the cold weather will eventually put the grass into hibernation. However, grass continues to grow throughout the fall until the first frost of the season — normally then it enters dormancy.
The continued mowing of your lawn is critical to the sustained health of your yard. The goal is to leave your grass as short as possible without scalping it, before snowfall sets in. This is typically a height of two inches for most lawns. Therefore, as it gets deeper into the fall months, gradually start lowering your mower’s deck height with each new mow until you reach this optimal height for dormancy.
The Benefits of Cutting Your Grass Short in The Fall
A fall mowing plan is centered around the idea of best prepping your lawn to handle the winter elements and then being ready to flourish in the spring. Cutting your grass shorter in the fall best positions your lawn to have a healthy root system.
The benefits of cutting your grass short include:
- Prevents disease — Long grass is more susceptible to winter fungal diseases
- Deter animals and pests — Long grass gives voles and small animals a place to hide from predators as they eat a ready food source: healthy grass, plants, and roots.
- Reduce winter kill — Shorter grass is less likely to experience winter kill, especially when snow is present. Snow folds over longer grass blades covering the plant crown, which can lead to fungal disease and rot
The Preservation Steps in a Fall Mowing Plan
Around the time when you stop mowing is also the time homeowners should take a few extra steps to safeguard their lawns in anticipation of winter.
One of the most important steps is to keep your lawn clear of debris and leaves. Regular raking is a necessary step to ensure that your lawn does not suffocate or become susceptible to infection and disease.
Next, a homeowner’s fall mowing plan should include fertilizing the lawn. Fall is the single most important time to fertilize as it provides lawns the necessary nutrients to remain strong in the winter months, and bounce back quickly in the spring.
Lastly, your fall mowing plan should include overseeding your lawn, especially if any thinning, burned, or diseased areas are present. It is natural for parts of a lawn to become harmed during the wear and tear of summer, therefore, re-seeding in the fall helps restore the lawn’s proper health status. Be sure to water the seed and any fertilizer you put out to help it take to the soil!
Need to Hire a Lawn Care Company in Columbia, MO?
Don’t hesitate to contact us to provide you with the lawn care services you need! As a leader in the Columbia, Missouri community, we are proud to provide our fellow residents with a wide variety of lawn care services and exceptional customer service in an effort to be the number one lawn care company in Central Missouri. If you are in need of lawn care help this fall, we can set up a customized fall mowing plan that fits your yard and gets you ready for the following spring!
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