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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Việt Nam
    I Don't Own a Mower :(

    Can You Cut At Too Tall Of A Height?


    I've always been a believer in the "taller is better" philosophy when it comes to mowing my lawn. It worked well for me at my old house (0.25 acre) to keep it at 3.75 - 4". That lawn was a mix of everything, predominately tall fescue, then rye and blue. It stayed green all season (I did have irrigation).

    I've recently moved to a new place with a 1 acre property. Lawn is similar - mix of many things, although I think the predominate grass is blue, followed by rye and tall fescue. I also have irrigation here. I kept my mowing height about the same, 3.75 - 4", but the lawn has not looked as good as I would have liked since late spring. Some things I'm noticing:
    Lawn grows fast, very fast. Within a week, I'm cutting 5-6" blades.
    Grass blades are very thin.
    Color is somewhat pale, not deep green.
    Grass seems to fold over itself and doesn't cut very neatly. Lots of stragglers and matting from the wheels of the mower.
    Lawn experienced some fungus (looked like red thread) a couple of weeks back which has made some significant areas brown and dry despite irrigation.
    Irrigation doesn't seem to be making its way to the soil, the soil seems to be very dry.

    So, my question: is it possible to cut grass at TOO tall of a height? I look at the recommendations for KBG which are at 2.5", rye at 2.5", and tall fescue at 3.5" and wondering if I should bring the height down a few notches. I always thought that taller was better, especially as the weather gets warmer, to keep the grass cool and prevent it from drying out.

    The lawns that I see in the neighborhood that look the best do seem to be cut at a much lower height than what I'm using, but they also look like a mono-type of grass (usually tall fescue).

    I've put about 1.6 lb N2/1000 sq ft so far this season (March, May, June) and included an application of Barricade in the spring. I've got an infestation of japanese beetles now that I'm treating (already two apps of grub killer including imidacloprid in June - I think there was a serious infestation of grubs last year that has carried over this year). My plans for the fall include a core aeration followed by spreading of some better grass varieties, mainly tall fescue and KBG, to get some better stands of grass in the lawn.



  3. #2

    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Victa slashers & Push , Rover Rancher II's, Cox ( several ) & White LT120 + GT 200

    Re: Can You Cut At Too Tall Of A Height?

    The taller the grass, the more leaf area exposed to sunlight the faster the grass will grow.
    We mow pasture grass at 6" when the livestock can not keep pace with it.

    Of the 2 crimes, too long is better than too short.
    Are you mulching or bagging.
    Mulching grass that is too long will cause problems as the cutting can not brake down fast enough.

  4. #3

    Join Date
    Apr 2017

    Re: Can You Cut At Too Tall Of A Height?

    Yes, you can cut grass too tall. If it is falling over and matting then it's too long. The matted grass can choke out nearby grass, resulting in clumpy growth. You end up with clumps of grass with voids in between which tend to accumulate leaves and debris in the hollows, exacerbating the problem. It's then difficult to renovate the lawn because slit seeders and even aerators have a hard time reaching the low spots between the clumps. Most mowers have a hard time creating suction and lifting grass blades over a cutting height of 3.5 inches. This of course depends on the deck and the blades used.

  5. #4

    Re: Can You Cut At Too Tall Of A Height?

    With tall fescue, above 4" looks really nice and all else equal if you are striping your lawn then the taller. It's better because it will have more sunlight bouncing off of more blade surface area. I have Kentucky Blue myself and in the summer I cut right at 3.5" and it looks great. The first issue I think of when your grass is "too tall" especially with fescue is that it makes your grass more prone to Rust on the top of the blades.
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