How long after planting grass seed can I mow?

How long after planting grass seed can I mow?

Let’s imagine the following – you have bought a house and everything is perfect and to your liking – except one little thing. The front yard is missing a lawn. The previous owner did not bother and, to cut down on work, simply used a dirt yard. This is also fine, but there is nothing that can replace the greenery you usually associate with a household. Especially if you are willing to take care of it since nobody can resist feeling envious of a well kept front lawn.

So, in the world where this happened – or more realistically, a brown spot appeared in a place you have been walking on a tad too much – what can you do? Well, today it is not too hard to go to your local gardening store and buy a bunch of grass seeds to replant them, but there are a couple of steps you should follow or at least be mindful of to ensure the proper (re)growth of your new lawn. It is also fair to say that some lawns will regrow on their own if the rest of the lawn is thick enough, but if you cannot wait, be sure to keep reading to find out what you can do to help out with the growth.

 

I have seeded my lawn – what now?

Well, there’s nothing to do but wait. It is stated that the newly seeded grass needs around a week to two for its roots to take hold, and you should not be messing around with it too much during this time. The more time you give it, the better, but feel free to bring out your lawnmower if the grass seems tall and healthy. This means that you can expect the grass to be at cutting height (above 3 inches) in around two months’ time. Patience is key and you do not want to ruin what you have started since there is no rushing perfection.

What you can do, especially if you live in a drier climate, is water the lawn periodically. Water, as with all other living beings, is the “start all – end all” with grass as well. Employing a sprinkler system or simply hosing the grass (albeit gently!) can be crucial in the first couple of days and can speed up the process by quite a bit.

 

The grass has grown. But it is not stopping! What now?  

Let’s say that everything has gone well until now and the grass has seemingly taken well. Some people may think that the work is done, and everything is back to normal. Well – you might want to exercise your patience a bit longer to prevent having to redo everything. 

You can take out your lawnmower, but there are a couple of tips you should know and follow:

Every lawnmower has wheels that go over the grass while cutting. While this is not a big deal usually, with newer patches of grass these wheels can rip them out if the roots are not strong enough. Therefore, patience is key. Be mindful of your lawnmower clearance, as you might find a lot of new brown patches if you go in too soon. 

When mowing for the first couple of times, set your lawnmower to the highest possible setting. While it may not be ideal for that “green carpet” look, your soil and grass will be very grateful since cutting too low can cause problems with lawn pests. This, obviously, is not preferred as weak grass has more problems of standing up to invasive diseases and pets. 

Be mindful of your lawnmowing technique as well. While you may prefer to do the lawnmowing quickly when you are on and near the newly planted grass, take your time, and do it slowly. Taking slow turns will prevent tearing out the roots with your wheels, the benefits of which are by now very clear. It is also advisable to use a walk-behind lawnmower since it is easier to control and will not damage the soil nor the grass as much with all the natural movement during the mowing.

Do your mowing when it is dry. If you’re doing it after rainfall, the ground will give in to the wheels and it will stick more, ruining both the soil and the grass – and most importantly – your lawnmowing experience.

You can leave the lawn clippings behind you – they will first serve as mulch and decompose later returning valuable nutrients to the soil itself. Do, however, check if the lawn was filled with weeds as you do not want to naturally reseed the weeds as well.

 

Conclusion

Well, there it is. The answer to the question of mowing after seeding is pretty clear – you should give it some time – around six to eight weeks should be enough – before mowing it since it will take that long for the roots to get strong enough and the grass to grow tall enough. 

We recommend 3 inches as the lowest possible setting you should set your lawnmower to, at least at the very beginning – even though experts state that 3 inches is the preferred lawn height at all times. In this manner, the lawn is allowed to regrow, protect itself from pests, and self-sustain with its own nutrients.

Be mindful of how you are mowing as well – exercise patience and do it slowly to protect the frailer patches of grass. Mowing during drier weather is also smart to preserve soil integrity which will in turn help the strengthening of grassroots. Do not forget to give water to the grass, especially if you live in a drier climate, as the grass is just a plant, and plants need water in abundance. 

By following these steps and doing your due research into how to seed and take care of the newly planted lawn you are set for success! We are sure you will be able to mow your lawn in no time.