Garden bushes, tree and green grass lawn covered with water due to snow melting thaw and flash high water at spring. Natural disaster deluge flooded house backyard pathway ang greenery at countryside

Mowing when wet, is it good?

In Spring, when the lawn is growing and rain is on the forecast for consecutive days, it bring up the age-old question: Is mowing the lawn is a good idea?

People often question mowing turf when it’s wet and whether or not its detrimental to the turf. Generally, mowing turf when it’s wet is not a problem for the turf, but more likely a problem for your mower. Some mowers may start to clog up when mowing wet turf, especially if the turf is a little taller than you’d like. Besides issues with the mower clogging, mowing wet turf will dull the mower blade quicker than if you are always mowing dry turf.

In addition to mower issues, and certainly more important in the long run, is the potential to compact the soil or do significant damage to the turf by turning or slipping of mower wheels when the soil is saturated. This, of course, is of greater concern for those using riding mowers or larger commercial mowing equipment than for a homeowner using a push-behind walk mower. I would advise you to wait on mowing until the puddles under your feet have subsided, otherwise you may do more damage than good.

Kevin Frank

Michigan State University Extension

Department of Crop and Soil Science

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