What Is the Proper Mowing Height for Grass in Your Yard?
By: Julie Day
How low–or high–should I cut the grass in my lawn? -Rasheem
The proper height for mowing your lawn depends on the type of grass, the season, and the growing conditions. For example, bentgrass can be mowed under 1/2″ while tall fescues should be 3-4 inches high. Choosing the correct mowing height is important since:
- Proper mowing creates a low-maintenance, drought-tolerant lawn.
- Mowing discourages undesirable grasses and weeds while encouraging your chosen grass type. For example, mowing fescue higher will discourage Bermuda grass which is low-growing.
Pointers for Setting Mower Cutting Height
- Shady grasses grow better if mowed a little higher.
- Raise the blade to the top of the cutting range for your type of grass (see chart below) during drought conditions in summer to reduce the stress on your lawn.
- Cut warm-season grasses at the lower end of the cutting range in early spring to remove dead blades.
- In general, cool-season grasses do best when cut as high as possible.
- Different varieties within the same grass type may vary as to the best cutting height, so try to identify the specific variety you have (such as ‘Zenith’ zoysia or ‘Empire’ zoysia), then check with a sod or seed supplier for cutting recommendations.
Recommended Mowing Heights for Lawn Grasses
The chart below gives general guidelines for grass cutting height.
|Grass Type||Mowing Height|
|Bahia grass||2” – 3”|
|Bentgrass||¼” – ¾”|
|Bermuda||½” – 1½”|
|Buffalograss||2” – 3”|
|Centipede||1½” – 2½”|
|Fine fescue||1½” – 2½”|
|Kentucky Bluegrass||1½” – 2½”|
|Ryegrass||1½” – 2½”|
|St. Augustine||2” – 4”|
|Tall fescue||2” – 3”|
|Zoysia||½” – 1½”|
- Making Mowing Easier
- Proper Mowing Techniques
- Choosing Grass For Your Climate
- The Basic Grasses (Turfgrass Producers International)