cutting heights

mdb landscaping

LawnSite Silver Member
Glastonbury, CT
i am purchasing a 60 inch lazer this spring, and this being my first ztr, i am looking forward to immediate height adjustment. i know during the spring and fall you cut low and in the summer cut high. what are the benefits of cutting high in the summer and is there any set guidelines you use to cut grass at the different times of the year. for example: in the spring i cut at X inches and the summer cut at y inches... etc.

John DiMartino

LawnSite Silver Member
Benefits to cutting high during the summer are,moisture stays in the ground,so grass rarely burns,there is a direct correlation between grass height and root depth,taller grass-deeper roots,almost never scalps at 3 1/2",grass kept on the high side of the acceptable range stays healthier and requires less pesticides,especially herbicdes.I cut at 2 1/2 spring,bringing it up to 3 1/2 by june,and drop down gradually starting around october,with the last few cuts being 2 1/2 order to cut grass that high 3 1/2" and have it look good,you need a deck with good lift and high blade tip speed.You must also keep your blades extremely sharp,or the grass wont be cut good.It is much harder to cut grass clean at 3 1/2 than at 2",from my experience.The Lazer will cut outstanding,just sharpen your blades every 6-8 cutting hours,keep a few sets with you.I have 7 sets,change them as needed,ssharpen them on a rainy day or make the help do it when they are between jobs.


LawnSite Senior Member
I agree with John.

Only I would add that I cut at 3" on irrigated lawns in heat of the summer and at 3 1/2" up to 4" on non irrigated lawns, depending on the direct sunlight they receive.

I also cut lower, like at 2 1/2" on commercial properties that have close public foot traffic. Anything taller looks too tall before the next weeks mowing on some of my properties.


LawnSite Fanatic
Memphis, TN
I cut at 3.25" year round. By cutting higher the grass stays the darker green much longer in hot weather. Makes a healthier and thicker lawn. Requires less water than shorter grass. Also, makes a lot smoother looking lawn.


LawnSite Gold Member
stanfield nc
My first cut is as low as i can get away with.
and not hurt lawn.Then soon all you are looking at is new green.WORKS FOR ME
I cut at 3 to 3.5 inches on most of my lawns. I have one customer that I've been cutting at 4 inches+ for the last 4 years. It is the lawn on my homepage and the one in the 1st 3 pics on my Lawn photo page. Last summer when it got dry here it was still green and growing. The only grass that I cut lower is the Zoysia in my backyard by the pool.


LawnSite Silver Member
We start out the season at 2.5 inches and then the first week of June we begin adding a spacer each week until we have reached 3.5 inches.

Then around the last two weeks of September we begin to lower the blades a spacer each week until we are back down to 2.5 inches.

The important thing to remember is SHARP blades provide the best cut. We change our blades and scrape the decks every 4 hours like clockwork. Takes us about 5 minutes for 6 blades. By doing this we are able to minimize the likelihood of fungal diseases being spread by our decks from one lawn to another. We are also able to operate the mowers at a higher ground speed because we are cutting with sharpened blades thus increasing productivity.

Hope this helps.


LawnSite Senior Member
Northwest Ohio
I had always cut at 2.5" up until last year. After buying my Walker in June I set it at 3" and cut there all year. My customers were very happy the way their lawns looked, nice and green all year. I will be staying at 3" from now on. I live in NW Ohio with mostly Kentucky Blue Grass. Never really went brown last year. Hope this helps.


LawnSite Senior Member
Flint, Michigan
We mow most lawns at 3.5" during the summer with the exception of a select few which are as low as 2" or as high as 4". We try to make the last cutting in the fall 2.5" or 3" (depending on the lawn) in case of a heavy snowpack during the winter. In the spring we'll cut them around as close to 3.5" depending how fast they are growing and how soon we can get back to mow again. The weather plays a big role sometimes in the spring.


LawnSite Senior Member
I start my first cut at 2.5" Then from there its 3" to 3.5" on most all my clients. I do cut around 2.5" on entry-ways on commercial business like banks and service centers, But i usually stay with a 3 to 3.5" cut untill late in the season. I do agree them blades need to stay sharp,and those decks cleaned, I do have two yds that i cut a 2" year round there Zoysia. Marks Mowing Service