What You Need To Know About Mowing Your Southwest Florida Lawn


 Southwest Florida Lawn MowerMowing is an important part of Southwest Florida lawn maintenance operation. Mowing at the correct height increases turf density and root health and suppresses weeds. A dense turf impedes stormwater runoff. A healthy root system ensures that water and nutrients are absorbed and not wasted. Fewer weeds mean less need for herbicides.

Recycle Grass Clippings

Clippings contain nutrients and should be recycled on the lawn. The nutrients in clippings are pollutants when they end up in stormwater systems and waterbodies.

Growth rates and mowing height have the most influence on mowing frequency. As a rule of thumb, mowing should be done often enough so that no more than one-third of the leaf blade is removed at any one mowing. For example, if a St. Augustine grass lawn is mowed at a height of 3 inches, it should be mowed when it grows to a height of 4 to 4.5 inches.

Maintain A Healthy Lawn

Following this practice minimizes the effect of mowing on photosynthesis and helps to maintain the high percentage of leaf surface necessary for healthy root development. Research shows that returning grass clippings to the surface, sometimes referred to as grass recycling, does not increase thatch buildup on turf.

Clippings have significant nutrient value and decompose rapidly, returning some fertilizer and organic matter to the soil.

For best mowing results and safety, be sure to follow these tips:

  • Pick up all stones, sticks, and other debris before mowing to avoid damaging the mower or injuring someone with flying objects.
  • Do not mow wet turf with a rotary mower because clippings can clog the machine. Mow only when the turf is dry.
  • Sharpen the mower blade frequently enough to prevent a ragged appearance to the turf.
  • Mow in a different direction every time your Southwest Florida lawn is cut. This prevents wear patterns, reduces the grain (grass laying over in the same direction), and reduces the possibility of scalping.
  • Do not remove clippings. If clumping occurs, distribute the clippings by re-mowing or by lightly raking. You can also use a leaf blower to distribute clippings.


Suggested mowing heights and mower types for Florida home lawns

Turfgrass Species Optimal Mowing Height (Inches) Mowing Frequency (Days) Preferred Mower Type
Bahia Grass 3.0-4.0 7-17 Rotary/Flail
Bermuda Grass 0.5-1.5 3-5 Reel
Centipede Grass 1.0-2.0 10-14 Rotary
Seashore Paspalum 1.0-2.0 5-10 Rotary/Reel
St. Augustine “Dwarfs” 3.0-4.0 & 1.5-2.5 5-14 Rotary
Zoysia Grass 1.0-3.0 10-14 Reel

If you are looking for a Southwest Florida lawn maintenance specialist, please call us today at 239.303.0821 or complete our online service request form.