Contents

How to Manage Pests

New lawns need time for their roots to become established before they can be mowed for the first time. For seeded lawns, it may take up to 2 months before they are ready to be mowed. Sod may be ready to be mowed within 2 to 3 weeks of planting. Three to six weeks are required for sprigs, stolons, and plugs to become established. For seeded lawns, wait for all of the seeds to germinate before mowing. For sod, sprigs, stolons, and plugs, make sure the roots are firmly planted in the soil before mowing to avoid tearing out new turf.

How to mow your new lawn

  • Be sure that the lawn is fairly dry before mowing so that you do not pull out any of your new lawn.
  • As a general rule, you should let your lawn grow to about one-and-a-half times the recommended height before cutting so that you are cutting off no more than one-third of the height of your lawn at a time.
  • Set your mower blade to the recommended cutting height for your turf species.
  • For the first mow, you can let the lawn grow to the high end of the recommended range or even a little higher before cutting to give it a little more time to become established, but be sure to still only cut off one-third of the blade.
  • Mow again a few days later to cut to the recommended height.
  • Mow regularly to keep your lawn healthy and avoid scalping damage.

Mowing established lawns

You always want to cut grass with clean, sharp mower blades but this is particularly important when mowing new grass or lawn. New grass is more tender, flexible and finer than more established grass. Dull cutting blades cannot make a clean cut on new grass and have a tendency to bend and tear, or pull on the grass blades which can damage the roots and invite disease into the blades at the tear points. Clean blades are important because blades with buildup from previous use may harbor disease or decaying material that can get introduced into the fresh cuts on the young lawn and spread bacteria and fungus into the new grass. Use either household isopropyl alcohol or a bleach solution made of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water on a clean rag or cotton padding to wipe down the mower blades. Use a scrub brush to loosen any built up dried material or rust on the blades. Alternatively, have your mower serviced by a professional who can both clean and sharpen the cutting blades before embarking on mowing your new grass.

Frequently asked questions about Lawn Turf

When is the best time to lay turf?
We supply turf throughout the year, with the peak times being spring and autumn. Turf can be laid at any time of year, but during dry periods you will need to be able to water your newly laid turf daily. During the winter root growth is slower so establishment takes a little longer.

What size will the turf rolls be?
The turf rolls will be 610mm (24″) wide and 1650mm (65″) long covering one square metre. Turf lengths occasionally vary due to weather conditions. Occasionally turf will be harvested in square yard rolls with dimensions of 16″ wide and 81″ long.

Can I collect turf from you?
Yes. There is no minimum order for collection, but please phone first so that we can have your freshly cut turf waiting for you.

Can I choose which day turf is delivered?
No. We are only able to offer our unique and personal delivery service by grouping orders together within a geographic location. When ordering you can select your preferred day of delivery and we will do our best to match it as best we can but it is simply not possible to guarantee a delivery day at point of order.

How is turf delivered?
The lorry driver will get as close as possible to your house and then unload the palleted turf onto the kerb. Please make provisions to allow room for the driver to unload and let us know of any potential problems.

How long can I leave turf rolled up?
You should begin to lay turf immediately after delivery. A roll of turf is a living mat of plants that need light as well as water and sunlight to thrive. If turf is left rolled up it will heat up and begin to turn yellow – this happens faster during warm weather.

Why has my turf shrunk?
Newly laid turf will occasionally shrink if it has not been watered enough. To minimise this problem ensure that you water newly laid turf during dry periods every evening with a sprinkler.

When can I walk on my new lawn?
It is best to wait for about three weeks. This will have given the roots the time to knit into the soil below.

When can I begin mowing my new lawn?
Don’t be tempted to mow your new lawn until the roots are firmly anchored into the soil below. As with walking on it, it is best to wait at least three weeks.

If you have any unanswered questions about turf please call 01621 860659 or email [email protected]

How Much Does It Cost To Mow And Maintain A Lawn?

How Much Does an Average Lawn Mowing or Maintenance Service Cost?

The national average estimate for lawn mowing and maintenance is between $214 and $322. It will often include a cut, weeding, trimming and pesticide treatment. Some services will price individually, while others will have monthly or weekly packages. Professional standard services might include:

  • Assessment: They will examine your lawn and create a treatment plan to keep your grass in good condition.
  • Fertilization: They will use fertilizer so your grass is green, beautiful and healthy.
  • Insect and weed control: They will use organic or non-organic pesticides and insecticides to protect your lawn.
  • Additional services: Some may include aeration and overseeding.

You may be able to reduce the cost if you are able to diagnose lawn issues before hiring a professional to take care of them.

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Are Lawn Mowing Services Worth the Cost?

Investing in a service is worth the cost if you’re busy and don?t have the time to do it yourself. Lawns mowed to an acceptable length–two to four inches–can handle climate stress, grow fewer weeds and will retain moisture. Prices will vary by location and whether the service is for a commercial or residential property. Urban landscapes will also cost more to maintain. Grass cutting rates will also vary depending on the frequency of mowing. If you have your lawn trimmed too infrequently, it will be more difficult to maintain. They are also based on square footage, though there is a minimum cost. It’s also important for lawn care professionals to know if you?ll want the front and backyard trimmed or just one.

For those projects where you would benefit, hire a lawn care pro today.

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Advanced Service Options

Some lawn care services offer fertilizer or weed control application in addition to their standard packages. This is especially important for homeowners who want their grass looking vibrant and well-cared for year-round to avoid brown lawns. In these cases, lawn services not only provide fertilizer but also offer recommendations for the types of grass that work best in different climates and with different soils. A full-care lawn service can even install new grass or lay pallets of sod.

Find a Local Lawn Care Service

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Green Lawn Care Service Options

More services are offering eco-friendly alternatives to standard lawn care. These services utilize organic or natural treatments for fertilizing grass. This has the added advantage of making the lawn child and pet-friendly because the compounds in the fertilizer contain fewer harmful chemicals and synthetic elements. They also use more environmentally friendly equipment or offer to compost lawn waste, keeping it out of landfills and making good use of the nutrients derived from organic sources. These services may also share tips for how to reduce water usage while maintaining a healthy lawn.

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Lawn Edging

Edging, otherwise known as landscape curbing, helps to create a visible, yet beautiful line between the grass and bed. Some of the materials you can use include:

  • Brick
  • Plastic
  • Concrete
  • Wood
  • Stone

Homeowners who want landscape edging installed should consider matching it to their walkways or patios. It’s also a good way to create a new flower bed in your backyard. Learn more about the landscape curbing cost to budget your project.
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Fertilization

Fertilizing your lawn is key to keeping your soil healthy throughout the year. The kind of fertilizer you apply must have nitrogen, either fast-release or controlled-release. Lawn care professionals will usually offer a balance of fast and controlled. You also will have the choice between organic or synthetic fertilizer. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, but many invest in organic fertilizer because:

  • It’s less likely to dry out grass to where it could burn in extreme heat conditions.
  • Compost, one of the popular organic fertilizers, is good for improving soil quality.
  • Its one con is that it contains less nitrogen than synthetic, so you have to buy more of it to properly fertilize a lawn.

There is also winterizing fertilizer for warm season grass, like bermuda and turf. Winterizing turf should be done in the fall. Unlike regular fertilizer, this has a lot of phosphorus and potassium but will increase a lawn’s hardiness against the cold months. See how much it costs to fertilize your lawn.
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Aeration

Lawn aeration is essentially poking holes in the soil so air, water and nutrients can get to the roots. It also helps the soil to move. How do you know when it’s time to aerate your lawn? Here are some signs:

  • When the yard is being heavily used by children, pets and family
  • When it’s part of a newly constructed home
  • Has a spongy feel or seems dried out
  • Has sod as the bottom layer with soil layering atop it

The best season for aeration is spring, so your grass can heal after having the holes poked in it. The best tools to use are either a spike aerator or a plug aerator. With a spike, you will poke holes in the ground with a tine or fork. Plugs will remove cores of soil from the grass. The plug will often work better because it removes soil rather than poking holes. Dethatching or power raking moves away dead grass, excess grass and putting holes in the ground and is considered another method of aeration that costs less. It can cost between $100 and $200 depending on the size of your lawn. See how much lawn aeration costs if you have it done professionally.
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Lawn Mowing Prices

Average lawn mowing prices range from about $30 to $80 per visit, depending on square footage, and large cutting projects can cost more as a result. Most lawn care services charge a flat rate per visit for lawn cutting and additional fees for extra services like edging, leaf-blowing or seasonal cleanup visits. You can determine how often the service comes, like once per week during the peak growing season. In terms of seasonal cleanup, a final autumn visit can include mulching or bagging leaves. An early spring visit may be needed to clear winter debris prior to regular mowing. Each service determines its own rates, and it can vary depending on many factors.

  • In suburban communities, the lot size may be a factor in the cost as well as distance.
  • Their estimate might also include labor and materials for the job plus upkeep for the equipment.
  • Maintenance costs for a mower may exceed those for a personal mower due to the higher level of usage, but a company that maintains its mowers will do better quality work than those who do not.
Find Local Lawn Mowers Now

Choosing a Lawn Mowing Service

When looking for a lawn care service, you should choose based on factors like price and eco-friendly options. You should also look at:

  • Range of services offered
  • Reputation
  • Location
  • Insured or not
  • Experience

Ready to hire? Get in touch with a lawn mowing pro today.

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Advantages and Disadvantages

Hiring a lawn service has many advantages for the homeowner.

  • The service will save time, particularly during the summer. A lawn service can potentially save two hours of work each week, adding up to as much as an entire day of extra time over the course of the summer.
  • A professional lawn service does not cost as much as it may seem when compared to purchasing, servicing and fueling a lawn mower. This may be especially true of full-service lawn care companies, which offers many services that a homeowner would be ill-equipped to do for themselves such as aeration, fertilization and installation of large quantities of grass.
  • Many lawn care professionals have years of experience, training and even education that can they can put to work to create and maintain the ideal lawn. In some areas, it is not uncommon to find technicians who have a background in turf management or other fields relating to lawn services in addition to their experience and on-the-job training.

In terms of disadvantages, hiring a lawn care service can require some time and research. You have to be willing to ask for references, look into their reputation and carefully consider how the service options offered fit into a budget. Failure to do so may result in hiring a service that does not sufficiently meet your needs.

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Independent Lawn Mowing Contractors

A budget-friendly option is hiring independent contractors, such as neighborhood teens who cut grass for a small fee during the summer. These individuals will generally have their own equipment and transportation and typically charge lower rates. They do not have as much experience or offer the range of services that lawn care professionals do. The quality of work is extremely varied, although word-of-mouth will often let homeowners know who provides the best service. As a final cautionary note, independent contractors that do not have insurance can be a liability to the homeowner if they are injured on the job. Homeowners should be familiar with their own insurance policies and weigh the possible risks and rewards carefully prior to hiring a neighborhood teen or other uninsured person to mow their grass.

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Yard Clean Up & Maintenance Costs

Hiring a lawn care service to clean and maintain your yard can save you time. This way you can spend time doing more important things than mowing, watering and pulling weeds. Before getting estimates, you should make an itemized list of everything you would like done.

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Spring Lawn Care

Spring lawn maintenance is key to preparing for new plant growth. You should remove old and dying branches, cut back any flowers and shrubs and fix any patches or brown spots. Some other major categories include:

  • Flower bed preparation
  • Planting
  • Pest control
  • Weed control

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Watering

Watering your lawn should be done periodically but not so much to drown it or not enough to dry it out. Some signs of dried-out grass include:

  • Blue-green color
  • Curled blades
  • Footprints staying in the grass

The best time to water your lawn is the morning to avoid evaporation or wind. Usually grass needs at least one inch of moisture a week. A good tip to lawn watering is following drought restrictions. They can be hard on the environment and your grass, leading to damage. You can also prevent runoff water by monitoring your yard for puddles. Sprinkler systems are an easy, effective method for keeping your lawn green. The top four sprinkler types are portable, stationary, rotary and oscillating. Portable and stationary sprinkler systems are good for specific areas. Rotary and oscillating sprinklers are better for medium to large lawns. Consult with a professional to determine if one type or a mix of two works best for your lawn.

Hire a Local Lawn Care Company

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Winterizing Your Yard

How you winterize a lawn depends on the grass type. Warm season grasses go dormant as temperatures drop in the fall and don?t awake again until the spring. Cool season grasses take on many nutrients throughout the year and require additional nutrients in the fall to survive. Here are the different approaches:

  • Cool Season: Apply a traditional lawn winterizing fertilizer twice, first at the end of summer and then at mid to late fall.
  • Warm Season: Apply a potash (K20) fertilizer containing low nitrogen and high potassium.

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Weed & Leaf Removal

Weeds are any plant that grow out of place. Some types of weeds you might remove are:

  • Dandelions
  • Crabgrass
  • Wild onions

Weed seeds are especially hard to remove because they are easily spread by wind, animals, garden tools and water. They can also remain dormant for years before starting to grow. The usual response to weeds is spraying herbicides but can be dangerous for your plants, pets and children. Along the same lines are leaves that have to be removed every year before the winter starts. Otherwise you can have dead spots and patches. You can control those patches with chemicals but run into problems. Leaf removal is crucial in environmental control of weeds as well, as they can kickstart their growth. Some essentials tools for leaf removal include:

  • Leaf rake
  • Leaf tarp
  • Leaf blower
  • Yard vacuum

Some are better for smaller lawns while others for large acres. Lawn care professionals will know which tool to use, but you can also purchase them if you plan to DIY. See how much leaf removal costs.
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DIY Lawn Maintenance Tips

For homeowners who choose to pursue lawn maintenance as a DIY project, here are some essential tips:

  1. ⅓ Rule: Never remove more than ⅓ of your grass, or it will be stressed out, have a difficult time thriving and look burnt out.
  2. Long grass blades: Longer grass blades means deeper grass roots, which allows for withstanding drought, pests and diseases.
  3. Mower blades: Your mower blades should always be sharp, or your grass will not recover as quickly.
  4. Fertilizer: Fertilizer is essential, so apply it on a regular basis.
  5. Apply pesticides & insecticides: You need to protect the grass against pests and diseases, so apply organic or synthetic defenses as needed.
  6. Watering: Your lawn needs moisture to stay green, so at least one inch of water is crucial on a daily basis.

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What is a fair hourly rate or lawn care, are you getting ripped off?

So you’re about to hire a lawn care service and you’re wondering what is a fair price to pay, and what’s more you might be asking yourself what is a fair hourly rate to pay?

The good news is that you’re not alone, this is a question we often get running the GreenPal platform helping homeowners all over America find , schedule and pay local lawn care services.

It gets better.. We decided to conduct research to get to the bottom of what is a fair hourly rate to pay for lawnmowing services.

It’s crazy, because it’s not as straightforward a question as you might think…

  • First off.. Should you try to negotiate an hourly rate with your lawn care service provider
  • Should you worry about effectively how much you’re paying them per hour?
  • And what is a fair hourly rate to pay for lawnmowing services?

After all.. You don’t want to come off like this person.. Do you ?

What’s the bottom line?

GreenPal recently conducted a poll of over 10,000 lawn care service providers all over the country about how much they charge for for weekly or every two weeks lawnmowing services.

As it turns out.. 78% of lawn care professionals we polled responded they charge $60 per man per hour.

Next.. 12% responded they charge on average $50 per man per hour

Lastly 10% responded they charge $40 per man per hour or less

But that’s just part of the story…

Much of this depends on what part of the country you live in, for example pricing for lawn maintenance services in warmer climates such as Florida or California are more price competitive than they are as compares to cooler climates.

You might be wondering why is this? Well think about it. It’s because the nature of the lawn care business is that it’s more stable in climates where the grass needs cutting year around and naturally more volatile when a professional lawn care services has to figure out how to make ends meet during the winter time.

Put another way, lawnmowing services are treated more as a commodity and warmer climates and more as a luxury service in Northern climates. If you think of it this way.. Its cheaper to install a pool in Florida than it is in New York, and lawn care services are much the same way.

However .. No doubt about it the consensus among the lawn care services who participated in our poll if that their average charge for professional lawn mowing services is around $1 per minute of grass cutting.

Put another way, lets say it takes your lawnmowing service 30 minutes to mow your yard by himself, and so you can figure the $30 per each lawn mowing is a fair price to pay based on average market pricing.

Now… let’s say he has a helper and there are 2 men on the lawn care team?

Well then he needs to be in and out of your lawn in 15-20 mins for that $30 price.. Make sense?

Now with all of that being said should you try to negotiate an hourly rate with your lawn maintenance service provider?.

Based on the feedback from our poll participants when it comes to regular grass cutting services, a fix agreed-upon price usually works out better.

Why is it you might ask? Well is because sometimes one lawn mowing might take a little longer than other grass cutting visits and reconciling these inevitable variable costs on a weekly or bi-weekly basis will no doubt get to be a total nightmare will be a source of arguments between you and your lawn maintenance service provider.

In short, it’s best to agree on a fixed cost for a weekly or every two weeks mowing and use the results from our poll as a benchmark for to know if you’re getting a fair lawn cutting proce or sadly if you’re getting ripped off.

What’s the real story? If you hire somebody to cut your grass on an hourly rate you can expect several arguments down the road and a source of contention that really just unnecessary for both of you.

So if you’re shopping for lawn care services and you’re looking for a weekly or every two week schedule with a local lawn maintenance service provider, a good rule of thumb is to figure 1 dollar per minute of grass cutting per man , per hour is a fair price to pay for quality lawn mowing services.

Simply stated.. use this rule of thumb as a guide to discern if you’re getting a good price from your grass cutting professional or if you’re getting ripped off.

Keep in mind it’s more expensive for lawn mowing services to do business these days and ever as labor costs are soaring, healthcare costs are increasing, Worker’s Comp insurances and other overhead is increasing. Why does this matter? Because any lawn mowing company you hire is going to need to recover these costs when they are mowing your yard.

Just take a look..

Put another way, if you get a price from somebody that is going to cut your yard for $20 and it takes them an hour to do it… It’s been my experience you shouldn’t expect them to be around for very long because they most likely will not be able to cover their overhead while doing a good job on your lawn.

In short it’s best to use our poll results to gauge what are you getting a good price on your lawn maintenance services or not, and as always you can check pricing in your area just by signing up for GreenPal to get five quick free grass cutting prices on your lawn.

How much does lawn mowing cost?

Imagine stepping out into your garden to find that it’s in pristine condition. An immaculate lawn is something many people dream of, but don’t have the time to achieve. The average cost of lawn mowing in Australia is between $45 to $85, but will vary according to the size of your garden.

Using a lawn mowing service, you can free up your spare time and reclaim it as your own. Long gone are the days when you would battle against the heat while curbing the size of your grass. If the thought of using a lawn mowing service appeals to you, it’s time to explore our price guide for lawn mowing.

A basic overview of lawn mowing prices

First, lawn mowing prices vary according to region. If you live in Perth, for example, you may find you’re paying less than those living in Sydney.

Second, a decent price guide for lawn mowing takes factors such as size and number into account. If you don’t have a front yard, you may find you’ll pay between $40 and $60. Depending on the time of year, this won’t amount to much at all.

Let’s say you’re using a lawn mowing service in the summer. You should mow your lawn every two weeks to maintain an even look. That means your lawn mowing costs will amount to $80 to $120 per month.

When autumn and winter roll around, your grass won’t grow quite so rapidly. You can reduce your mowing frequency to every four to five weeks. For the sake of simplicity, let’s say that means you’re paying around $40 to $60 per month.

That’s great news, right? But, what if your lawn is slightly bigger than average? And, how do you calculate the costs of hiring someone to cut your grass accordingly?

How much does it cost for lawn care?

So far, we’ve discussed using a grass cutting service for a small backyard only. As a rough guide, small means two car spaces.

If you own a yard that could fit four cars in it, it’s time to start looking at large garden prices. For a back yard only, this means you’ll pay $70 to $90.

If you’re lucky enough to own a garden that could fit six or more cars in it, your lawn care costs will range between $100 and $120.

Does the size of the grass affect the price?

So far, all the prices we’ve presented represent normal sized grass. If you’ve let yours grow wild, for whatever reason, expect the costs to rise. As a rough estimate, here’s our lawn care costs table for people who love to let their gardens grow:

Lawn Size

Price

Small

$40 to $60

Large

$60 to $80

Very large

$80 to $100

Although the prices rise inline with your garden’s size, you could see financial benefits in certain circumstances. For example, if you’re trying to sell your house, having a pristine lawn gives it greater kerb appeal.

Additionally, if you’re self-employed or you work from home, the hours you save when hiring someone to cut your grass go back into your business. Essentially, the cost of lawn care pays for itself in these circumstances.

Why do lawn mowing costs rise when the grass is long?

Even the best lawn mower won’t slash its way through grass effectively when it’s too long. If the person you hire attempts to do this, a couple of things could happen:

  • They’ll damage the blades on their mower

  • If they do damage the blades on their mower, they may not be able to complete the job

  • You’ll experience uneven results, which nobody wants

To prepare long grass for a mower, the professional who comes to your home will need to engage in a little slashing. In other words, they’ll use different tools to chop the grass down to a cuttable size.

Other factors that could affect the cost of a grass cutting service

When you want to find the right professional for the job, expect that they’ll treat it as a business. Because of this, the cost of a grass cutting service may be affected by other factors:

Travel time

Travel is a major overhead when you’re cutting someone else’s lawns. In addition to the usual petrol or diesel costs, there’s business vehicle insurance. And, as they’re carrying a heavy piece of equipment around, they burn through more fuel than your everyday driver.

Travel time can also affect someone’s average per-hour rate. It may be the case that the person cutting your grass will raise their prices if they need to make a long journey that detracts from their usual business hours.

The size of the business

Solopreneurs may charge less than those running a large business. That’s because the following costs don’t mount up as much:

  • Business insurance

  • Vehicle maintenance

  • Employee liability

  • Advertising

  • Employee uniforms

Hiring someone who works alone doesn’t mean you’ll get less for your money. However, they may not have backup resources. For example, employees to cover them if they’re sick. Or, additional machines if theirs breaks.

Where you live

It’s no hidden secret that living in an urban area increases living costs. As a result, the person who comes to your property to cut your lawn may set their prices in line with the cost of living for their area.

It’s also worth remembering that while you may not live far from a service provider, they make take traffic into account.

How to Use Your Grass Strimmer: The Ultimate How-To Guide

Also known as grass trimmers, weed-whackers, line trimmers and string trimmers, these versatile tools are perfect for creating beautifully uniformed boarder edges, trimming around difficult terrain such as trees and garden ornaments, as well as clearing larger patches of unruly rough vegetation. For tasks like working up to a garden wall and tackling sloping areas of grass, where a lawn mower is completely unsuited, a grass strimmer proves it’s self as a must have tool.

This guide will take you through the basics of how to use a strimmer to its full potential for a variety of tasks, as well as introduce some basic strimming and trimming health and safety essentials.

Click a link to jump to a section:

  • Types of Strimmer
  • Common Features and Where to Find Them
  • Staying Safe When Using Your Strimmer
  • Preparing to Use Your Strimmer
  • How to Use a Strimmer like a Pro

Have You Got the Right Strimmer for the Job?

The biggest difference between all the available strimmers on the market is how the motor is powered. The three most common ways of powering a grass strimmer are 2-stroke petrol engines, battery powered motors, and mains powered electric strimmers. The first thing you should do before you get to work in your garden is make sure you know what your strimmer is suitable for and capable of.

Petrol Powered Strimmers & Trimmers

Powered by two-stroke engines of varying power, these strimmers are suited to those who need to tackle even the toughest strimming tasks or have a larger area of garden to take care of. Being completely free of wires and cabling, they’re highly mobile garden tools. 2-stroke engines are described in terms of engine displacement or “cc”, just like a motor vehicle.

Many petrol strimmers are powerful enough to have separate cutting attachments like the SGS 52cc Combination Strimmer and Brush cutter (perfect for tough bracken and shrubbery) which combines a strimmer and brush cutter with hedge trimming and chainsaw attachments. These types of tool are incredibly useful to have around and allow for completion of a variety of garden tasks.

Battery Powered Strimmers & Trimmers

Ideal for lighter work and smaller gardens, lithium-ion powered strimmers are relatively new additions to the market. Battery powered garden tools are lightweight and ultra mobile, however require recharging every 20 minutes or so depending on the capacity of your cell. This is less of a problem if you have a small area to work in or numerous interchangeable batteries. We stock a range of Hyundai strimmers and grass trimmers, meaning that the batteries are interchangeable between over 50 home and garden tools, making them ideal for someone who already owns one.

Electric Strimmers & Trimmers

These tools tend to be the cheapest type of strimmer you can buy, mainly because of the limitations of being stuck to an electrical socket. You won’t be able to venture into more difficult terrain or tackle the far end of your garden with ease, but on the flip side, you won’t be dependent on a battery capacity. A good compromise between corded and battery strimming is the Ryobi ONE+ Hybrid Power Grass Trimmer. This clever tool gives you the flexibility of a battery tool, plus the option to use a mains power cord if you run out of juice half way through your gardening.

If you need more help making sure you have the right grass strimmer, take a look at our comprehensive buyers guide here.

Get to Know Your Strimmer: Common Features and Where to Find Them

It’s worth spending a little time looking over your strimmer and checking where all the features are. We’ve labelled up a SGS 26cc Petrol Strimmer with many of the common feature of a strimmer. Your strimmer might have less or different features to the one pictured, but the diagram shows most of the typical elements that make up a strimmer.

7 Golden Rules for Safe Garden Strimming: Staying Safe When Using Your Strimmer

A strimmer is effectively a rapidly revolving cutting head, with hard trimming line trailing from the end. If you’ve ever seen someone using their strimmer on some overgrown weeds, you’ll know the cutting potential of even a small strimmer. When used properly by an operator aware of the inherent risks involved, garden strimming couldn’t be safer. We’ve put together a list of 7 Golden Rules for Safe Garden Strimming, so you can trim to your heart’s content without the fear of losing a toe.

1. Wear the Right Protective Gear

With a trimming line that revolves at up to 3,000 revolutions per minute, it’s worth taking your personal protective equipment seriously. Eye and face protection is a must. A pair of tough gloves and sturdy shoes is highly recommended. Strimmers can be very noisy, so get some ear defender or plugs. Regardless of the weather, wear full length trousers and avoid loose fitting clothes.

2. Expect Flying Debris

Even the best kept gardens can have nasty surprises lurking just beneath the surface. Pieces of debris, such as a stone, could easily be flung towards a window or unsuspecting person’s eyes.Check the garden for surprises before you turn on the strimmer. 5 minutes of checking for obstructions could save you from a broken window or worse.

3. Look out for Trip Hazards and Cabling

If you’re using a mains powered electric strimmer, the biggest hazard is likely to the long trailing cable. You’re just as likely to trip over the cable as you move around the garden, as you are to accidentally trim the wire to bits. Don’t use an extension cable that’s too long and keep it well away from the strimming head.Regardless of what strimmer you’re using, stay vigilant while you move through your garden and keep a strong stance as you work. Never work in the rain or when the ground is slippery or sodden.

4. Keep Away From the Business End

It really can’t be said enough, accidentally coming into contact with the trimming line will cause some serious damage. If you’re using a harness and wearing the right clothes, you’ll minimise the risks, but just be aware that while the strimmers turned on, you should be nowhere near the spool. If you do have to perform any maintenance on the line end, make sure the tool has been switched off and has cooled down before you attempt the work.

5. Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Your strimmer will cut through your prized flowerbed just as quickly as it’ll tackle weeds. Whatever you point the tool at is likely to be cut to shreds or at least severely damaged. Be careful around fences, plant pots, garden walls and sculptures – hitting hard things will mean you’ll go through trimmer line really quickly as well as potentially take a chunk out of whatever you hit. Clear you garden of furniture, ornaments etc before you start your work.

6. Be Cautious of Liquid Fuels & Fumes

This rule is for petrol strimmers only; wherever there’s a liquid fuel, there’s going to be exhaust emissions. Carbon-monoxide is very poisonous and invisible, so never use your strimmer in an enclosed space where gases can collect. If your strimmer is making excessive fumes, you might need to do some maintenance and adjust the carburettor’s air intake. Store your petrol or fuel mix somewhere out of the house and away from anything that might cause a spark. Allow an engine to completely cool down before you try and refuel a petrol powered tool.

7. Take Regular Breaks

Power tools cause vibrations and noise, both of which will take their toll on an operator over a long period of time. Wearing the right protective equipment, keeping a good stance and wearing a harness will all help elevate strain and keep you strimming comfortably. Listen to what your body is telling you; if fatigue creeps up on you or your muscles start to ache, it’s time to give it a rest for the day. Stay hydrated and never operate a power tool if you’re feeling unwell.

Preparing to Use Your Strimmer

So before you start up your strimmer, there’s a couple of things you should tick off your checklist first.

Read your instructions carefully

Every strimmer is a little different, so it’s worth taking a look through your instruction manual before you begin. All SGS strimmers and garden power tools come with comprehensive instruction manuals that are available to download from individual product pages if you’ve lost the one that came in the box!

Make sure your garden is prepared

Now’s the time to check the garden over for any potential hazards such as stones and other hidden nasties in the grass. Move all your garden furniture and ornaments out of the way of where you’ll be strimming. Put the kids and pets in the house out of the way from where you’ll be working.

Wear your safety equipment

We’ve already been through what protective equipment is advised, but it’s worth reiterating that you need something like safety glasses or a visor to protect your face, sturdy shoes and long trousers before you start strimming. Gloves, ear defenders and steel toe cap boots are also recommended.

Start the strimmer

You’re just about ready to get under way with your strimming. Electric strimmers will be as simple as a switch and possibly a dead mans switch. Petrol power strimmer will have a starting procedure that’s explained in the manual. You can see a step-by-step picture guide for starting an SGS strimmer here.

How to Use a Strimmer like a Pro

So now you’re sure you have the right strimmer, you know where all the features of your strimmer are, you’re up to date on all the health and safety stuff, and the ground is clear and ready for action – let’s do some strimming.

Know the Cutting Direction of Your Strimmer

In the same way a circular saw ejects sawdust away from, your trimmer needs to displace the grass away from the trimmer line and spool. The way the grass will fly out will depend on the direction your spool spins. SGS strimmers rotate clockwise, so the grass is ejected to the right side of the tool, meaning the left of your tool is best cutting edge. If you’re cutting along an edge the debris needs to be ejected away from where you’re cutting.

So, if you’re using a SGS strimmer, you’ll want to move from right to left, as this will give you the clearest possible view of what you’re cutting. If you don’t work into the cut line, you’ll start ejecting material into your cutting path, piling up clippings, bogging down your strimmer and potentially scalping the grass.

Remember Where the Cutting Power Is

Without getting embroiled in the physics, a strimmer utilises high speed centrifugal force to do all the cutting – essentially the faster it spins, the stiffer the line, the greater the cutting potential. You might think simply hovering your strimmer over a section of grass is the best way to do all the cutting – however this is incorrect; the very ends of the trimming line are where all the cutting power is being focused. Like any other cutting tool, you need to know where the “sharp bit” is to use it properly – for your strimmer, it’s the very tip of the line.

Strimmer Cutting Techniques

A strimmer is an incredibly versatile tool when in the right hands. There’s four basic cutting techniques you need to master for the perfect garden; edging, tapering, scything and screeding. They each have their own uses, and unique aesthetics depending on what you want to achieve. We’ll go through them all in turn.

Edging a Border

Where two surfaces are basically flush, you’ll find that edging gives you that sharp, clean cut finish. You might want to use this technique between your lawn and drive or around flower bed borders. To achieve this finish, keep your strimmer spool flat and parallel to the ground. Find your cut height, get into a comfortable working position and then simply walk into the cut path. Keep a firm grip at a uniformed height for the best results. Expect dirt, stones and debris to be thrown around when you attempt this cutting technique.

If you’ve not edged a border before, don’t expect the perfect edge on your first attempt. It’s a lot easier to cut a bit more of your lawn every week, gently creeping up on that perfect crisp edge. Once you’ve got it once, it’s easy to maintain it.

Tapering Up to Walls, Fences or Around Trees

Tapering gives a gradual, fading grass effect that looks particularly attractive around obstacles, giving a more natural feel than the strong parallel cut you get from edging. Instead of angling the trimmer line flat (like you do when edging) hold your strimmer at a slight angle. Pitch the tip of the cutting line towards the object you’re trimming around – you’ll cut less grass as you move around the obstacle, but a tapered edge means you won’t end up with an unattractive channel of grass between where you’ve mowed and your obstruction. Blend the edge with the height of your mowed grass for a clean but natural looking finish.

Scything Longer Grass & Weeds

Some obstacles can’t be easily walked around, particularly when working in longer grass. You shouldn’t attempt scything unless you have a powerful strimmer – preferably a petrol strimmer. To trim longer grass and weeds, or to cut around a more difficultly placed obstacle, take a strong stance and bring the tool in and out of the cutting area in a shallow “U” shape. You can overlap your scythes for a more even cut, or space them out a bit for a natural wavy effect.

Screeding Tricky Weeds

The final type of cut you might attempt with your strimmer is for those annoying weeds that grow through cracks or between patio paving slabs. It’s a fast and effective way to remove those unsightly tufts of overgrowth, but it’ll take a toll on your trimming line. It also requires a fairly steady hand and you need a strimmer light enough to manoeuvre with confidence.

Tip your spool so that the nylon strings are just glancing off the floor. Bring the strimmer up to speed and then swing into the weed’s base, cutting flush to the hard surface. If you angle too shallow you go through a reel of trimming line in no time. If you go in at too steep an angle and you won’t hit all of the plant, leaving you with an uneven finish – practice makes perfect with this cut!

Still Need help?

Our in house experts are always on hand for buying advice and to provide bespoke care, regardless of the application.

Call SGS on 01332 576 850 or fill out our contact form today.

Can You Efficiently Strim (and Cut) Wet Grass and Should You Be Doing it at All?

The rain keeps pouring seemingly without end and your lawn is now soaked. For the first time in days, however, the sun makes its way through the crowd of clouds. This is your opportunity – you’re about to mow the tall neglected grass in your yard… But should you?

Table of Contents:

  • Can You Strim Wet Grass
  • Cutting Wet Grass Tips

So, if you:

  • Need to mow your lawn during or right after a rainy period;
  • Are wondering if it’s safe;
  • Want to know how to do it properly,

Then read on! This article will help you.

Strimming after rain may become tricky because of the soggy grass, so you start asking yourself questions. Will the damp lawn be kind to your string trimmer? What about mower blades, will they be as efficient this time around? Is it safe to cut the grass when wet at all if you own electrical equipment? Let us explain.

Can You Adequately Strim Wet Turf and Should You at All?

When the grass is wet, it will become heavy and sticky. The blades (or lines) of your tool of choice should either be freshly sharpened or brand new. Otherwise, they will have troubles with cutting an even lawn level. There are a few situations when you can (and should) strim wet grass:

Only strim a wet lawn if the rainy weather doesn’t allow it to completely dry out. When working, frequently check if the tool is clogged. There’s a chance that your strimmer will chew up, knock over or even miss the taller wet grass blades altogether. When the ground dries out afterwards, the bent over sod will straighten up. To avoid an uneven lawn cut trim repeatedly.

Consider this: You will lose the benefit of evenly spread fresh grass mulch. Wet clippings will stick together forming clumps. These clumps, if not raked, may damage some of the grass patches by suffocating them and depriving them of sunlight.

tip

More powerful mowers and trimmers, like the professional or agricultural models, will be more helpful here as they have a better chance of handling a damp lawn properly.

Note: Strimming wet grass will paint everything in the vicinity in green. Be cautious when doing this around white walls or outdoor furniture!

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How mowing wet grass is done correctly + Advice

As far as the UK weather is concerned, you will probably be forced to get your hands dirty. There could be almost no windows of opportunity here since it’s likely that you’ll luck out on a prolonged rainy period. In this case, letting your lawn become overgrown is the worse scenario from the two. Given that you have no other option here’s how to go about cutting wet grass efficiently:

  1. Stick to petrol-based tools.

    When the turf is soggy it is NOT safe to use electrical equipment, such as a lawnmower with an extension cord. A cable’s insulation can still be compromised.

  2. Strim the grass at a high cut setting before the actual mowing.

    Rake any formed clumps to allow the air and sun to do their job and dry your lawn out.

  3. Sharpen your equipment’s blades.

    Do it right before the job as wet grass can be evasive.

  4. Spray the underside of your mower with lubricant.

    This will help you avoid clogging.

  5. Set your mower at the highest cutting setting possible.

    You can cut down your lawn to your desired height once the grass has dried out.

  6. Mow at least twice on the same day.

    This is a great way to break clumps and avoid an uneven cut.

  7. Avoid using lawn striping attachment.

    As beautiful as pronounced lawn stripes can be you should only focus on getting a nice clean cut and not bending the grass.

Because the soaked grass blades are more likely to bend over rather than get cut it would appear that your mower is inefficient. Mowing the grass when wet will not dull your blades. The effect is a result of clogging, soggy clumps, and broken rather than cut grass. However, you stand a better chance to do the job right if you sharpen the blades beforehand.

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Takeaways

  • You can mow wet grass, however it will be more difficult to get an even cut.
  • Make sure the blades of your tool are sharp.
  • Mow the lawn at least twice for a better chance at an even cut.
  • You will need to rake the clumped grass off the lawn.
  • Using electrical equipment is not safe and should be avoided when cutting wet grass.
  • Strim the grass at a high setting at first.
  • Avoid using lawn striping attachments.

***

Do leave a comment below if you feel you need more answers!

Header image source: / By Evgeny Glazunov

  • Last update: December 3, 2019

Posted in All About the Lawn

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