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Mowing After Fertilizing, this is the best way to do it

Fertilizing your lawn is important for its healthy growth, as fertilizers supply Nitrogen and nutrients to the grass, which helps it remain green. Lawn fertilization also helps the grass to grow thick and healthy. A lawn with thick and healthy grass growth creates a natural resistance against weeds. Fertilizers enrich the soil with the necessary nutrients that it lacks and make the grass grow faster, healthier, and stronger.

Mowing After Fertilizing is the best way to do it:

Usually, fertilizers are applied in springs, early summers, and fall. The two types of fertilizers need different mowing strategies. If you use a liquid fertilizer, you only need to wait around four hours or until the grass is dry before you can start mowing. If you use a Granular fertilizer, you should wait 24 to 48 hours. Always water in the fertilizer and let the grass dry completely before mowing the lawn. Don’t wait longer than a week after fertilizing, and use a sharp blade. Do not use a grass catcher. It may pick up the fertilizer.

Different types of fertilizers work at different rates. So, it is important to consider the right time to mow the grass once you have fertilized it so that you don’t affect the provision of nutrients to the soil by the fertilizer.

This article will inform you about the right time to mow your grass after fertilizing it. Moreover, the article will also inform you about the right time to mow your lawn based on the type of fertilizer you apply.

Benefits of fertilizing

First of all, let’s look at the various benefits fertilizers provide. Like any plant, grass needs nutrition to thrive, turn thick and green, and withstand the traffic we put on it throughout the season. A healthy, smooth, weed-free, and lush green lawn is attractive and satisfying for everyone. But achieving that lush and healthy lawn requires more than just cutting the grass or watering it properly.

Pest control and fertilization are equally important for a lawn as regular mowing and watering are. Fertilizers help your lawn stay healthy and resist weed invasion. Weeds are always hard to establish and spread in a healthy and thick yard. Fertilizing not only helps crowd out weeds, but also helps the lawn withstand insect pressure.

Fertilizers also strengthen the grass’s root system, which helps it absorb water quickly during heavy rains. This helps to reduce flooding and muddy spots on the lawn. Fertilizing the lawn also helps the grass to grow faster. Growing a lawn without fertilizer consumes a lot of time. The nutrients in the grass help the grass to grow strong at a faster rate.

Fertilizing is also a cost-effective way of maintaining your lawn. Investing in fertilizer is the only cost, and you can save big on potential repairs or landscaping that may need to be done if your lawn loses its health. 

It is often said that grass needs sunshine and water to grow. Meanwhile, don’t forget to feed it. Your lawn also needs nutrients to thrive and survive. Over time, soil naturally loses many important nutrients it needs to survive.

Rich soil requires three key elements: phosphorus, nitrate, and potassium. If your soil lacks any of them, your lawn will look brown. Fertilizers provide these key elements to the soil, which help the grass to grow healthy and strong.

It is also important to know how often you should fertilize your lawn and when you should do it. If you want a nice quality lawn, you must fertilize it twice a year. You need to fertilize your lawn once in the spring and once in the fall.

If you want a lush and high-quality lawn or a lot of traffic like kids and pets often playing on it, you have to fertilize it four times a year. Twice in the spring and twice in the fall.

If you live in the northern areas of The U.S, spring and fall are the most important times to fertilize your lawn. However, if you live in southern areas of the U.S and have Zoysia, St. Augustine grass, or other warm-season grasses, the best time for fertilization is from late spring through mid-summer.

During this time, the grass grows faster and needs fertilizer the most.

Importance of mowing

Before discussing the right time to mow after fertilizing, let’s briefly see the benefits of regular mowing. Mowing is also one of the most important lawn care jobs. Regular mowing helps you to keep your lawn robust and healthy. Mowing regularly also adds to the beauty of your lawn.

If you don’t mow your grass for a long time, you will notice that your grass will grow at different heights, and your lawn will look rough.

On the other hand, if you cut your grass too short, your lawn becomes more susceptible to weed invasion, heat damage, and drought. Mowing helps you to keep the grass nourished and strong. It helps the grass to grow at an even rate and height. Mowing regularly also helps to combat pests in the lawn.

But, to realize the benefits of regularly mowed lawns, you must be aware of when and how to mow. In the next section, we are going to discuss the right time to mow the grass after you have fertilized it.

Liquid and Granular Fertilizers

If you have applied fertilizer to your lawn and started mowing right after that, this could be risky. Mowing time also depends on the type of fertilizer that you have applied. There are two basic types of fertilizers, liquid fertilizers and granular fertilizers.

Liquid fertilizers are best used in large areas like golf courses. Once these fertilizers are applied, the lawn must be watered to prevent the Nitrogen from damaging the grass. Liquid fertilizers should never be applied to the grass during its growing season. The advantage of liquid fertilizers is that they are easy to apply across the lawn.

There is also an ease of blending these fertilizers with other herbicides. Moreover, they can be applied uniformly and consistently as compared to granular fertilizers. Other crop protection products can be easily blended with liquid fertilizers. The grass has faster access to nutrients as liquid penetrates the soil immediately. Liquid fertilizers are also better at balancing the pH of the soil based on chemicals in the fertilizer.

For example, Nitrogen is very helpful for the soil, but it may kill plants if it is over-applied. Similarly, potassium-based fertilizers can be helpful, too, but in the right amount. So, liquid fertilizers are a better option that maintains a uniform quantity of the chemicals applied across the lawn.

Granular fertilizers are usually common and suitable for most standard lawns. These fertilizers are spread over the lawn by spreader or by hand. The granular fertilizers are absorbed in the soil slower, so their effects last longer than liquid fertilizers.

Moreover, using slow-release organic granular fertilizers greatly decreases the risk of damaging lawns. After application, the lawn is watered so that the fertilizer is pushed to the soil and it doesn’t stick to the grass blades. Granular fertilizers are cheaper in bulk and easier to store.

They don’t settle out over time or salt out in cold weather. They are more efficient as far as the heavy pre-plant application is concerned. Granular fertilizers must be watered to begin to absorb into the roots of the grass.

If granular fertilizers are not watered in, the fertilizer granule will sit on the top of the soil and slowly dissolve into it, which may not be enough to boost the growth of the grass in your lawn. After fertilization, watering helps to dissolve and activate Nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and other trace elements that promote healthy lawn growth.

If not watered, you risk fertilizer burn from the nutrients sitting on the soil surface and grass blades and infusing the wrong areas with nutrients. The temperature and moistness of the soil determine the amount of water required in the lawn after fertilization.

It would be best if you watered to moisten the soil and fertilizer but not so the water washes away the nutrients. So, water after fertilization but carefully.

When should you mow your grass after fertilizing?

Once fertilized, the question is when it is time to mow. If you use a liquid or spray-on fertilizer, you must wait for two to four hours or until the grass is dry. Mowing wet grass damages both the grass and the soil. Your mower may pick up fertilizer in some areas of your lawn if your lawn is wet. So always avoid mowing wet grass.

Although liquid fertilizers are fast and work more efficiently than granular fertilizers, you still have to wait for the soil to absorb the nutrients supplied by the fertilizer. If you use granular fertilizer, it is best practice to wait for 24 to 48 hours before mowing the fertilized lawn. You must let the nutrients soak entirely into the soil by watering it. Otherwise, all your fertilization will go in vain. Once the grass is dry and the grains are dissolved in the soil, you can mow the grass.

If your mower is equipped with a grass catcher, it might cause a problem. A grass catcher acts like a vacuum and may suck up the fertilizer before it dissolves into the soil. This may leave some areas in the lawn full of fertilizers and others with nothing. Moreover, avoid bagging the clippings while mowing after you have applied the fertilizer. This causes the fertilizer to stay on the lawn even if it was picked up during the grass cutting.

If an herbicide is also sprayed with fertilizer, it takes some time for the leaves to absorb and move throughout the grass plant. Lawn fertilizers are usually applied to dry grass unless the fertilizer also contains an herbicide. Herbicide and fertilizer mixtures are applied after a light watering so the herbicide can stick to plant leaves. Water after application so the nutrients soak into the soil. If you use plain fertilizer, mow a few days later when the grass is dry.

Helpful tips for mowing after fertilizing

  • Don’t wait too long: Do not let the grass grow out of control by waiting longer than a week after fertilizing. The added nutrients boost the grass’s growing potential, as most lawn grasses do not acclimate well when you cut more than one-third of the blade’s length in a single mowing session.
  • Avoid wet grass: Avoid mowing the lawn when the grass is wet. Mowing a muddy or wet lawn will damage the grass.
  • Watering: Always water in the fertilizer and let the grass dry completely before mowing the lawn.
  • Regular mowing: Don’t wait too long to mow your lawn. Mow regularly so that you cut only one-third of the blade each time.
  • Clippings: If you mow regularly, there is no need to bag the clippings, as short clippings are a great natural lawn fertilizer.
  • Short grass: Avoid cutting the grass too short. Short grass has shallower roots, making it hard to withstand drastic weather conditions.
  • Dry conditions: During drought summer conditions, reduce the stress on your lawn by raising your blade to the upper cutting range.
  • Change the mowing pattern: Change your lawn mowing pattern every time you mow your lawn.
  • Sharp blade: Use a sharp blade while mowing the lawn.


Mowing before fertilizing is preferred, removing excessive growth and debris like fallen leaves from the grass. This helps the fertilizer to reach the soil more quickly. Mowing after fertilizing is not harmful to your lawn in the short term. It may cause problems in the long term as your fertilizer may not perform its functions as you desire.

Mowing too soon after fertilization can diminish the effectiveness of the fertilizer. It is advisable to wait a few days before mowing your fertilized lawn. The best practice is to fertilize your lawn and perform watering after fertilization so that nutrients easily get dissolved in the soil. Once dry, you can mow the lawn as you normally do.

Optimal Method for Mowing After Lawn Fertilization

Mowing your lawn is essential to maintaining a neat and healthy yard. But if you’ve just applied fertilizer, you may be wondering how long you should wait before mowing or if there’s a specific technique you should use.

• Importance of Fertilization and Mowing

Fertilizing and mowing are both critical aspects of lawn care. Fertilization replenishes nutrients that may be lacking in your soil, promoting healthy growth and helping your grass to resist drought, disease, and pests.

On the other hand, mowing keeps your lawn looking tidy and prevents issues like soil compaction or thatch build-up. It’s essential to pay attention to both fertilization and mowing techniques to maintain a robust and attractive lawn.

• Timing is Key: When to Mow After Fertilizing

Giving the fertilizer enough time to be absorbed by the soil and taken up by the grass before you mow is crucial. Generally, you should wait at least 24 to 48 hours after applying granular fertilizers before mowing your lawn.

If you used a liquid fertilizer, it’s essential to wait at least four hours, but 24 hours is preferable to ensure that the fertilizer has been adequately absorbed.

When you water your lawn after fertilizing, it helps the fertilizer to penetrate the soil and reach the grassroots. In the case of granular fertilizer, water the lawn immediately after application, while liquid fertilizers should be watered after two days. After watering, wait the appropriate amount of time before mowing.

The University of Maryland Extension recommends that you avoid mowing wet grass, as it can become slippery and dangerous, and it may also cause the mower to tear the grass instead of cutting it cleanly, leading to disease and damage.

• Mowing Technique: Cutting Height and Clippings

– Cutting Height

After applying fertilizer, pay close attention to the recommended cutting height for your specific grass type. The rule of thumb is to cut off no more than one-third of the grass height at a time.

Taller grass generally has a deeper root system, which enables it to absorb more water and nutrients. Cutting your grass too short can stress it and cause it to become more susceptible to disease, pests, and drought.

Maintaining the correct grass height is also essential in controlling weeds, as taller grass can compete more effectively against unwanted plants.

– Clippings

One common question is whether to leave grass clippings behind after mowing a recently fertilized lawn. Grass clippings can nourish your lawn, so leaving them behind is generally a good idea.

However, if the clippings are dense, wet, or clumped, you may want to spread them out, rake them up, or use a mulching mower to break them down.

• Mower Maintenance

A well-maintained mower is more likely to produce a healthy and even cut. Keep your mower blades sharp, as dull blades can tear and damage the grass. Regularly check your mower oil and filters to ensure smooth operation, and don’t forget to clean the mower annually to remove trapped grass and debris.

• Final Thoughts on Mowing After Fertilizing

It’s essential to approach mowing after fertilizing with care and attention. Waiting until the fertilizer has been adequately absorbed and maintaining proper mowing techniques can ensure the health and beauty of your lawn.

Pay attention to cutting heights, managing grass clippings, and maintaining your mower to maximize your lawn fertilization efforts. Following these guidelines can help you enjoy a lush and thriving lawn all season.

Choose the right fertilizer for your lawn type.
Apply the fertilizer evenly, following the instructions on the package.
Wait for the recommended amount of time after fertilizing before mowing (usually 24-48 hours).
Adjust the mower’s cutting height to remove only one-third of the grass blades’ length at a time.
Mow the lawn following a consistent pattern, overlapping each pass slightly to ensure even cutting.

Ideal Timing: Fertilize Before or After Mowing?

• Understanding Fertilization and Lawn Health

A well-maintained lawn can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your property, but it also requires proper care and attention to achieve. One aspect of maintaining a healthy lawn includes the application of fertilizers. Fertilizing is essential in providing the necessary nutrients for grass growth and development.

However, the timing of fertilizer application is crucial in achieving the desired results. It is important to know whether to fertilize before or after mowing, as it may significantly affect the health and look of your lawn.

• To Fertilize before Mowing: Pros and Cons

– Advantages

There are certain advantages to fertilizing your lawn before mowing. One such benefit includes giving the nutrients enough time to penetrate the soil and be absorbed by the roots. Fertilizer needs to be adequately watered in, so applying before mowing allows the water to be more easily absorbed and not evaporate as quickly.

Furthermore, applying fertilizer before mowing may be more efficient since both tasks could be completed during the same visit to the lawn. This may save both time and energy in the long run.

– Disadvantages

On the other hand, applying fertilizer before mowing also comes with some drawbacks. The primary concern is that mowing can potentially redistribute the fertilizer unevenly throughout the lawn. Uneven distribution may lead to an imbalance in nutrients, resulting in uneven growth and development.

Moreover, mowing shortly after fertilizing may cause the nutrients to get caught in the mower’s catch bag and eventually wasted. As a result, your lawn may not receive the full benefits of the fertilizer.

• To Fertilize after Mowing: Pros and Cons

– Advantages

Fertilizing your lawn after mowing has numerous benefits. First, it provides a more even spread of the fertilizer. This uniform distribution is essential in ensuring that the nutrients are spread evenly across the entire lawn, leading to consistent growth and development.

Additionally, mowing immediately before fertilizing provides an optimal opportunity for the fertilizer to penetrate the soil. The freshly cut grass makes it easier for water and nutrients to reach the roots of the grass, thus promoting healthy growth.

It is also worth noting that fertilizing after mowing ensures that nutrients are not lost due to the mowing process. As mentioned earlier, applying fertilizer before mowing might cause some nutrients to be collected in the mower’s catch bag or blown around the yard by the mower itself.

– Disadvantages

While there are many advantages to fertilizing after mowing, there are also some drawbacks. One such concern is that fertilizing after mowing may require more time and effort. Completing both tasks in one visit to the lawn is not feasible as it may take some time for the nutrients to be absorbed into the ground.

Another disadvantage stems from the potential for the excess fertilizer to be tracked into your home or other areas. After walking on freshly fertilized grass, the fertilizer particles may stick to your shoes and be tracked onto your floors or carpets.

• Recommendations and Best Practices

Based on experience and the pros and cons discussed above, it is generally recommended to fertilize your lawn after mowing. Doing so will promote more even nutrient distribution and help ensure maximum benefits from the fertilizer. However, it is also important to be aware of the potential drawbacks, such as the additional time and effort it may take.

Furthermore, following the manufacturer’s instructions for the specific fertilizer you use is essential. These recommendations will help you achieve the best possible results from your fertilizer application.

If possible, try to mow and fertilize your lawn on separate days to avoid any complications or difficulties. This will allow enough time for the nutrients to be absorbed into the ground and take effect.

Additionally, you can refer to the University of Minnesota Extension website for more information on proper fertilization practices and guidelines for the most suitable fertilizer types for your lawn.

• Conclusion

In conclusion, understanding whether to fertilize before or after mowing is pivotal for maintaining a healthy and vibrant lawn. By considering each method’s pros and cons and following the recommendations stated here, you can ensure that your lawn receives the essential nutrients it needs to thrive.

Post-Fertilization Lawn Care: Essential Tips

Fertilizing your lawn is essential to maintaining a healthy and vibrant landscape.

• Watering the Lawn After Fertilization

Proper watering is crucial to the effectiveness of a fertilizer application. Water is vital for the nutrients in the fertilizer to penetrate the soil and be absorbed by the grassroots.

– When to Water

After applying fertilizer, watering the lawn within the first 24 hours is essential. The water will help dissolve the granules and move the nutrients into the soil. It will also prevent the fertilizer from being blown away by the wind or washing off during heavy rain.

In some cases, where the fertilizer comes with specific instructions, adhere to those guidelines to ensure optimum results.

– How Much Water to Apply

Generally, provide at least 1 inch of water after fertilizing your lawn. This ensures that the fertilizer reaches the grassroots for optimal absorption. Consider using a rain gauge or a small container to measure the amount of water applied to the area.

– Additional Watering Tips

  • Water early in the morning, between 6-10 am, to minimize evaporation and maximize water absorption.
  • Avoid over-watering your lawn, which may lead to shallow root systems and increased disease risk.
  • Use a sprinkler system with a timer to ensure consistent and sufficient watering.

• Mowing the Lawn After Fertilizing

Proper mowing practices are equally important following a fertilizer application, as incorrect mowing can negate the benefits of fertilization.

– When to Mow

After fertilizing, wait for at least 24 hours before mowing the lawn. This will allow the fertilizer to be fully absorbed by the grassroots without being removed by the mower. Ensure that the grass has also been adequately watered before proceeding to mow.

– Mowing Height and Frequency

Maintain a mowing height between 3-4 inches, removing no more than one-third of the grass blade at a time. This can help to promote deeper and more extensive root systems, improving overall lawn health. Mow regularly, generally every 7-10 days, depending on the grass species and growth rate.

– Additional Mowing Tips

  • Always use a sharp mower blade to reduce turf tearing and promote faster recovery.
  • Vary the mowing pattern and direction to avoid soil compaction and encourage even growth.

• Monitoring Lawn Health After Fertilization

Keep a close eye on your lawn after fertilizing to ensure the success of your efforts and identify any potential problems.

– Look for Signs of Fertilizer Burn

Fertilizer burn occurs when an excess of salts in the fertilizer causes harm to the turf. This will appear as brown or yellow patches on the lawn. Always follow the manufacturer’s recommended application rates and watering instructions to avoid this.

– Watch for Pest and Disease Activity

Fertilizing can sometimes cause an increase in pest and disease activity. Look for anything unusual, such as fungal outbreaks or increased insect activity.

If you suspect any issues, refer to a reputable source, such as the University of California Integrated Pest Management Program, for guidance on identifying and treating specific conditions.

– Assess the Effectiveness of Your Fertilization

After several weeks, evaluate the results of your fertilization efforts. A healthy, well-fertilized lawn should show signs of improvement, such as increased growth, an even green color, and a more uniform appearance.

If you don’t see these results or notice other problems, consider adjusting your fertilization program or consulting a professional landscaper or lawn care specialist.

• Conclusion

Understanding what to do after fertilizing your lawn is essential for achieving a healthy and vibrant landscape. By properly watering, mowing, and monitoring your lawn after fertilization, you will ensure the success of your efforts and enjoy a beautiful, thriving landscape.

What to do after fertilizing lawn?
1Water the lawnWater the lawn thoroughly after fertilizing to help the nutrients penetrate the soil and reach the grass roots.
2Wait before mowingWait 24 to 48 hours after fertilizing before mowing your lawn to give the grass time to absorb the nutrients.
3Monitor the lawnKeep an eye on your lawn for signs of over-fertilization (yellowing, burning) and act accordingly to remedy the situation if necessary.
4Maintain a proper mowing scheduleRegularly mow your lawn according to its type and growth rate, which will help it absorb nutrients more effectively and promote healthy growth.
5Aerate the lawnIf soil compaction is an issue, consider aerating your lawn to improve its root access to water, air, and nutrients.