Most important rule when giving your lawn the first cut for ‘greener, healthier’ grass


Here gardening expert Chris Bonnett from Gardening Express gives his advice on when and how to cut.

With all the rain we’ve been having, getting out into the garden to give the lawn its first cut has been tricky.

Weather conditions need to be favourable and the grass sufficiently dry to allow you to take the top off the lawn.

Saying when exactly you should do it is impossible, it’s about keeping an eye on the weather, and seeing if your grass is dry enough.

When you do give it the first cut though, you’ll notice the difference instantly. The grass looks greener, healthy and certainly gives the garden a tidier feel.

There are a few rules to follow the first time you get the mower out. Remembering to just take the top off the grass is an important one as is making sure you’ve removed any winter debris from the lawn.

Here’s my advice for giving the grass the first cut of the year:

Sharpen the blades 

Sharp mower blades give the best results so make sure that your blades are in good condition before you give your lawn its first cut. 

Clear debris

Make sure to clear any twigs, fallen leaves or rubbish that have accumulated on the lawn during winter. If you skip this step then you may end up damaging your lawnmower. 

Choose the highest blade setting

Set the blades on the highest setting and give the grass a light trim only, making sure you don’t cut down more than a third of the grass’ height. This will promote grass growth without damaging it or attracting weeds. 

Avoid waterlogged lawns

If your lawn is wet, avoid walking or mowing it to prevent soil compaction. Compacted soil hinders water, air, and nutrient transport, making it difficult for grass to grow.

Tidy up clippings

After mowing, remove the clippings from the lawn. Leaving them on the lawn hinders sunlight from reaching your grass and can contribute to thatch. 

Leave a corner uncut for wildlife

If possible, don’t mow all of your lawn and leave a small section in your garden uncut for the wildlife so you can provide some shelter and food for them.

Carry on mowing weekly or fortnightly

After the first cut of the year, make sure to mow the lawn at least fortnightly during spring. As the temperatures get warmer and grass grows quicker, it’s best to move on to a weekly routine. 

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