Best mowers for better lawns

By Caroline Wright Posted in: ImproveTips

Of all the things you can do to keep your lawn healthy, mowing properly on a regular schedule might be most important.

Use the right mower at the correct mowing height on a schedule that’s appropriate for your grass, and your lawn will likely have fewer issues with weeds, pests and runoff, and increased resistance to disease and drought.

According to Sean Fong, owner of Hawaiian Turfgrass, most lawns in Hawaii should be maintained with reel mowers.

“Some people start with rotary mowers, but when they switch to reel mowers, their grass really starts looking good,” said Fong.

Reel mowers, he explains, cut each blade of grass like a pair of scissors, with moving blades that pass over a stationary bedknife and can cut turf below 1 inch.

“Rotary mowers can’t go below 1 inch, which causes problems with thatch, the mass of organic matter that accumulates around the base of grass plants,” Fong added.

Switching to a reel mower can make a tremendous difference.

“Just mow on the recommended schedule, and make sure both your reel mower blade and bedknife are sharp so your mower isn’t tearing the grass,” Fong recommended.

Of the five varieties sold by Hawaiian Turfgrass, only one — Captiva St. Augustine — should be maintained with a rotary mower. Reel mowers are recommended for the company’s other varieties: Tifgrand Bermuda, Zeon Zoysia, El Toro Zoysia, and Seastar Seashore Paspalum. All except El Toro Zoysia are offered exclusively in Hawaii by the Mililani turfgrass farm.

“Older varieties of these grasses had more thatch and required more mowing, but ours have improved traits and require less maintenance,” Fong said.

If you’re shopping for turf-grass, make sure you know what kind of maintenance you’re willing to take on.

“The last thing you want is to plant your yard with turf used on golf courses and at resorts without understanding the labor needed to maintain it,” Fong advised. “But if you make time to mow on the schedule recommended for your grass, with the recommended equipment, you’ll avoid a host of common issues.”

Order a new Zeon Zoysia lawn (minimum 500 square feet) from Hawaiian Turf-grass by Dec. 31, 2019 for a $500 discount on installation! Call 371-0527 and mention this article to receive your special installation discount.