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bermuda lawn

GLC

LawnSite Member
Location
Alabama
i have a lawn that is mostly bermuda and centipede grass. I live in alabama. over the winter it has become dormant. my question is this, do i need to cut the yard down to say 1.5 inches so it will grow back lush and green? Or do I need to do something else? I cut the lawn at 3.5 inches this past season. any help is much appreciated....
 

Turf Dawg

LawnSite Gold Member
My personal answer is YES. If you have been cutting it a 3.5" you are going to have long stems and short leaf blades. On Bermuda you want short stems and long leaves or every time you cut just a little off it is going to cut the small leaf growth and it will look bad for a couple of days.
 

jtk47

LawnSite Member
Location
MS
Rule of thumb is never cut back more than 1/3 of the total grass height. When you do this problems can arise such as disease and root damage. Also if you cut it down to 1.5 inches you will probably stress the centipede severely. It also depends on what cultivar of bermuda you have. Also if you do cut it down that low and keep cutting it that low look for the bermuda to take over.
 
OP
G

GLC

LawnSite Member
Location
Alabama
i dont know what cultivar it is but having the bermuda take over is not that bad. I want to cut it down for the first time, then let it grow out so i can start back cutting it at about 3 - 3.5 inches. that way, the owner can get that carpet feel when they walk out on the lawn. am I going at it the right way? I will fertilize once cut down...
 

georgiagrass

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
Beginning March 1, we scalp bermuda down to no more than 1". Our rule is: cut it as short as possible without getting into the crown. This gets rid of the brown, dormant grass and allows the turf to grow back green and thick. If you scalp in the spring, you will have less problem with brown scalped spots during the growing season.
 

brucec32

LawnSite Platinum Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
It's almost certainly dormant, it's not going to stress anything to mow brown stems to 1.5" :dizzy:

Can we please take what sounds to be homeowner questions for our "experts" to the homeowner section lawnsite has graciously provided for such a purpose?
 

IRRITECH

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
ATLANTA, GA
Rule of thumb is never cut back more than 1/3 of the total grass height. When you do this problems can arise such as disease and root damage. Also if you cut it down to 1.5 inches you will probably stress the centipede severely. It also depends on what cultivar of bermuda you have. Also if you do cut it down that low and keep cutting it that low look for the bermuda to take over.
It's freakin dormant! That being said, yes go ahead and cut it back. It would really help the grass in the long run if you would maintain it around that height all year.
 

greendoctor

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Honolulu, Hawaii
A part bermuda/centipede lawn will convert to mostly bermuda if it is cut at less than 1.5 inches and is fertilized/irrigated to favor the bermuda. If you want the bermuda, it should be cut with a reel mower. Rotary mowers tear up bermuda lawns and encourage weeds.
 
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