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The Best (And The Worst) Time Of Day To Mow Lawn: All You Need To Know

For a healthy, beautiful yard, the best time of day to mow the lawn is mid-morning or late-afternoon. The temperature is not too hot and the grass has had enough time to dry from the previous night’s dew. Avoid mowing the lawn during the early morning, midday, or evening.

You probably know that it’s important to wait before mowing freshly seeded grass. But did you know that the time of day you mow can also impact your lawn’s health and appearance? 

If you didn’t, you’re not alone.

Knowing the best time of day to mow lawn can ensure your grass grows green and strong. On the other hand, mowing at the wrong time of day could leave your lawn vulnerable to heat stress and disease.

Keep reading to learn when to cut your lawn for the best results (and when to skip the mower altogether).

The Best Time Of Day To Mow Your Lawn

If you want to get the absolute most from your lawn care routine, stick to mowing the lawn in the mid-morning or late afternoon.

These times of day offer the perfect balance of temperature and moisture for a healthy, clean-cut yard. 

Infograph: What Time Of Day  is Best to Mow?

Of course, you don’t always have control over when you take care of your backyard. Here’s what you should know about the risks and benefits of mowing your lawn at different times of day:

Early Morning: Sunrise – 8am

Early morning is not the optimal time to do any kind of lawn maintenance. The morning dew hasn’t had a chance to dry up, which can clog your mower and leave tire marks in the soil.

dewy grass
Image credit: flickr.com

If your grass is wet, it’s easier for fungal spores to spread from blade to blade. There’s also a good chance your mower’s blades will tear rather than cut the grass. 

Wait until later in the day for the best results. Or use a long garden hose to remove dew from your lawn quickly:

Mid-Morning: 8am – 10am

After the dew has dried up, mid-morning is one of the best times to mow the lawn. The day’s temperature hasn’t yet peaked, even in the middle of summer. 

By mowing in the mid-morning, you give your lawn plenty of time to recover before the hot afternoon sun and cool evening air. Plus, you avoid breaking a sweat during the warmest part of the day.

Lawn mower

As a general rule, you should mow the lawn after the grass is dry but before the air temperature starts to rise.

The ideal time to mow your lawn in the morning can vary with the seasons and your location. If your property has a lot of shade, you might need to wait longer for the previous night’s dew to fully evaporate.

Midday: 10am – 4pm

Midday is definitely not the best time to mow lawn in heat. In fact, it’s the worst.

Sunlit grass

If you mow your yard at this time, the afternoon sun will leave your grass dry and damaged. This is also the time of day when you’re most likely to develop a nasty sunburn

Avoid mowing your lawn in the middle of the day unless the weather is cool and mild. 

Late Afternoon: 4pm – 6pm

If you don’t have time in the morning, late afternoon is the next best time of day to mow the lawn. 

The afternoon sun isn’t as bright, and the temperatures have started to drop. Your lawn will have just enough time to recover before nightfall.

Mowing the lawn a couple of hours before sundown is ideal. While you should mow close to 4 PM in the spring, you can push your lawn maintenance later as the days grow longer.

Evening: 6pm – Sundown

Surprisingly, the evening is one of the worst times to mow the lawn. Your grass might be safe from the intense afternoon sun, but nighttime comes with its own risks. 

Fungi and plant-borne diseases love moisture and cool temperatures. So as soon as the sun sets, these pathogens come out to play. Freshly cut grass is particularly vulnerable to these risks.

Mushroom in a grassy lawn

If you must mow the lawn at night, do so before dew has had a chance to form. Make sure you have enough light to see by, or you’ll end up with a rough, uneven lawn.

FAQs

Is It Better To Mow In The Morning Or Evening?

If you’re wondering if it’s better to mow in the morning or evening, it’s better to mow your lawn in the morning. Grass needs time to heal before nightfall. Mowing in the evening will leave your lawn more vulnerable to pests, disease, and fungi.

Is It Bad To Mow Lawn When It’s Hot?

It’s bad to mow your lawn when it’s hot. Mowing damages the grass blades, and it’s harder for your lawn to recover in extreme heat.

Is 7AM Too Early To Mow Lawn?

It is too early to mow the lawn at 7AM, both for your grass and your neighbors. Wait until around 9AM to avoid irritating your neighbors. This also gives the morning dew a chance to dry.

Is It Rude To Mow Lawn At 8PM?

It is rude to mow the lawn at 8PM. To be safe, finish mowing your lawn at least one or two hours before sundown

Is It Rude To Mow Your Lawn On Sunday?

It’s not rude to mow your lawn on Sunday. For many homeowners, this is one of the only days of the week they have time for lawn care. You should, however, avoid mowing in the early morning on weekends.

A Perfect Lawn Calls For Perfect Timing

While mowing too early can make lawn striping near-impossible, mowing too late can actually affect your grass’s health.

For a healthy lawn that looks great:

  • Mow in the mid-morning or late-afternoon.
  • Only mow at midday in cool temperatures.
  • Avoid mowing in the early morning or evening.
  • Let the morning dew dry before mowing the grass.
  • Be considerate of your neighbors when deciding the best time of day to mow lawn.

What’s your favorite time of day to tackle lawn work? Are you an early bird or a night owl? Let us know in the comments below!

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