As a proud homeowner, you will know that maintaining a lush and green lawn requires regular mowing, but have you ever wondered what’s the earliest time in the day you can get out in the yard with your lawnmower?
The general consensus among experts is that the best time to mow your lawn is in the morning, ideally between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. This time frame allows the dew to evaporate but avoids the hottest part of the day.
Additionally, early to mid-morning mowing is less likely to disturb neighboring households and comply with municipal noise regulations.
In this article, I will discuss how early morning mowing is great for optimal growth and maintenance, taking into consideration different locations, weather conditions, seasons, and grass types.
Why is the Time of Day Important for Mowing Your Lawn?
Mowing your lawn at the appropriate time of day can make a significant difference in the health and growth patterns of your lawn. Many experts agree that the best period is early to mid-morning, as the temperatures are cooler, and the dew will have dried.
In practical terms that means you should plan on getting out in the yard between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. so that you’re finished before the sun gets too high and the temperature rockets.
Cutting your grass in the morning also provides sufficient time for the blades to recover from the stress and also promotes healthy root development.
Be careful if you live in a region where you get heavy dew in the mornings though, as you will need to wait until it has dried off enough to begin mowing. An easy way to tell is to check that it no longer makes your shoes wet when you walk on the grass. (I previously wrote about the potential problems with mowing wet grass in more detail here.)
During spring and fall you may find that you can leave the grass cutting until later in the morning/early afternoon as the sun will not be as strong. This will help to make sure the lawn is dry before getting the mower out.
In hotter areas where it’s already hot and dry before breakfast, it would be best to start mowing earlier as long as local regulations and noise restrictions allow it.
Mowing during the hotter, middle parts of the day is not recommended, as the grass is prone to heat stress and is more likely to get damaged. In this case, if you are unable to get out there in the morning, then the next best thing is to wait until late afternoon or early evening.
How Do Different Seasons Affect Grass Cutting Schedules?
Lawn care is a year-round process, and different seasons may require you to change your mowing schedules, depending on where you live. During the summer, you might need to mow your lawn more frequently as the grass grows faster due to warmer temperatures and higher rainfall.
In contrast, during winter, the grass grows more slowly or not at all, and you will need to mow your lawn relatively less often or even stop altogether (you can read more about this in this article).
However, it is essential to ensure that the grass is not too long during the winter as long grass can lead to fungal growth.
Overall, the best advice is to mow your lawn at least once a week during the growing season to ensure your grass remains healthy.
Effects Of Weather Conditions On Mowing
Weather conditions can also significantly affect when you should mow the lawn and also how often.
During wet seasons, you may need to mow your lawn more frequently to prevent it from becoming too long and promoting fungal growth. Finding a dry spell during the day would be the best option, whatever time of day it is, as damp grass clippings can also clog your mower and make it less efficient.
During hot, dry weather, it’s essential to minimize mowing as much as possible and keep the grass longer. The stress caused by mowing can easily damage grass already stressed by heat and drought. As mentioned earlier, aim to mow around 8 a.m. in this type of climate to give your grass the best chance of thriving.
Additionally, daily watering is recommended during dry spells to keep the grass healthy, but make sure to do this after mowing if possible. If you must do it beforehand, leave enough time for the lawn to dry out before cutting.
Do Grass Types Affect When I Should Cut The Grass?
While different grass types have different growth rates and textures that can affect the optimum height to keep them at, the timing of when you mow during the day is the same for all.
For warm-season grasses like Bermuda, Zoysia, and Centipede, it is recommended to mow your lawn at different heights depending on the time of year. During the early spring and summer, the grass should be mowed lower to promote vigorous growth. However, during the late summer and fall, it is recommended to raise the mower height to encourage deeper root growth in preparation for winter.
For cool-season grasses like Kentucky Bluegrass, Fescue, and Ryegrass, it is recommended to maintain your lawn at a height of 2 to 3 inches. Mowing it higher promotes deeper root growth and decreases stress on the grass during high heat.
I hope that you now have a good idea of why the time of day you choose to mow your lawn is essential to the health of your grass. Mowing in the first part of the morning from around 8 a.m. means the overnight grass dew should be dry but the day will not yet be too hot.
Remember as well that different seasons may require a change in mowing schedules, and you will also need to adjust to take account of weather conditions. Take note of the proper mowing techniques to promote even and consistent growth and with this knowledge, you can maintain a beautiful and healthy lawn year-round.