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How to cut 3 ft. tall grass

by Jackson White

With busy schedules and unexpected things happening in life, you may find yourself lacking the time to mow your lawn. At this point you will discover that your lawn has grown exceedingly high to over three feet making it quite a challenge to trim it. The first option would be to hire a commercial lawn mowing company but there seasons like summer when this companies resources are a bit stretched.

To cut this grass you need to choose the right time for it. This is mostly when it is hot and dry as it prevents the spread diseases. It is not recommended to cut a huge chunk of the grass at the first mow as this may prevent the grass from recovering. Aim at cutting half of the grass.

Tools needed for the task

  • Lawn mower
  • Work gloves and goggles
  • Garden sickle
  • Lawn fertilizer and seed
  • Sacrifier, broadfork and some sand

Making the first cut

Depending on how long you have left your lawn unattended it could have grown to the length of your knees. This cut tends to be the hardest. For this we recommend you begin with your string trimmer or scythe. It is not recommended to use your lawn mower at this time as the blades may be caught by the thick grass hence preventing them from spinning effectively. This will further lead to motor problems like overheating. In addition, the thick grass is fertile ground for hiding by rodents, snakes and other crawling animals. You do not want your lawn mower running over this.

While most people have access to a line strimmer, a scythe does the job perfectly and is highly recommended. You can also use a sickle. Most of these tools will be available in your local hardware store.

Once you get down to work, cut the grass to up to 50% of its original height and then give it a few days t recover. This should be between two to four days. Then repeat the process again. This second cut will reduce the grass height to about 6 inches tall. Give your grass some more time to recover before trimming it again with your lawn mower.

When using your strimmer the preference is for one with a plastic wire instead of a steel blade. The problem with strimmers is that they often tear the grass a lot and this at times get caught up in the equipment. The way to handle this is to do the work in bits while you remove the excess waste.

For some people, they recommend watering the lawn after the first cut, then giving it a week to grow before doing the second cut.

Using your lawn mower

Once the grass is the right height then it is time to deploy your lawn mower. This should take place approximately one week to eight days after the first cut. The first thing you need is to make adjustments to your mower so that it is capable of reducing the grass height by up to a third. You should mow and adjust settings until your grass is at your preferred height. To prevent you from overstretching your grass, give it four to five days before you repeat the process. It is also prudent that each time you mow try approaching the cutting from different directions so that the grass gets straight. Once done mowing, water it so that it starts to grow well again.

The type of lawn mow to use will largely depend on how thick the grass is. If it has really overgrown then use a gas mower. However, if you have a small yard then an electric mower will work just fine. The mower can be used up to the flower bed edges then you can deploy a trimmer for the flower bed edges. This helps keep them nice and neat.

Scarify your lawn

To do this you will need a scarifying rake, and you can use it to rake the lawn to about one meter. The scarifying enables you to remove weeds and moss off the lawn. While at it, this would be the perfect time to work on your drainage system. If you leave in an area where you get a lot of pods then you can use the sand described above to fill in those pods. You can fill out empty lawn patches with the fertilizer seeds and while at it fertilize your lawn so that it grows to a beautiful lush green color.

How to keep your lawn from being overgrown again

Once you have cut your lawn to your required size, you then need to ensure that it does not overgrow again. This requires you to continuously allocate time to mow the lawn like every 10 to 14 days during the growing season. Some people use robotic machines called automowers but it still boils down to you finding time for mowing.

It is impossible to have a well even lawn without those annoying patches where the grass does not grow right. These patches occur out of lack of sunlight and can be an eyesore to an otherwise well maintained lawn. You can cover these patches with a generous amount of grass seed and then watering it.

During those hot summers or droughts it is recommended that you give your lawn a good soaking every 7 to 10 days. Giving it a quick sprinkle won’t solve the problem as the decreased rainfall means that whatever water meets the ground easily evaporates. Those areas of your lawn where the lawn mower is not able to reach can be tended through the use of a trimmer. This helps keep the edges well maintained, leaving your lawn looking perfect.

Once you are done mowing your lawn the next step is to keep it well maintained. Weeds need to be removed regularly as they prevent the proper development of your lawn by starving it of vital nutrients. This competition for air and nutrients will lead to stunted growth for your lawn grass. Removing weeds need to be done with hand and you should uproot the whole weed from its root.

Too much thatch can also block your lawn from getting the right amount of nutrients and air. Thatch is organic matter that forms as a thick layer between your soil and the leaves. It mainly consists of root stems, dead leaves and grass. You identify thatch by its spongy feel. To remove thatch you need to engage in a procedure called scarification. This involves a rake that is capable of removing much of the thatch on your lawn. You can also use a lawn scarifier. The worst form of infestation to your lawn is the appearance of moss. This are non-flowering plants that grow in areas where there is excess moisture, shade and low quality turf. Moss often reduces the quality of your lawn grass. Moss is also attracted to areas with poor drainage, lots of shade, high quantities of thatch and drought. The first step in eliminating moss is to identify the root of the problem for the moss infestation.

To keep your lawn looking green and healthy you need to ensure that your soil is well drained. Waterlogging for days is a disaster waiting to happen as it is a breeding ground for insects.


When you grass grows above 3 feet the first way to trim it is to use a trimmer or sickle. This brings the grass to lengths that make it easier to use a lawn mower. The lawn mower can then be adjusted so as to cut the desired length.

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