It can be a bit tricky to mow tall grass without causing any damage. The key is to cut the grass slow in the beginning and to only cut about one-third of the grass height. If you cut more than that, you could risk damaging the grass.

So, you’ve been too busy or away on vacation and now your grass is calling for some much-needed TLC? Well, you’ve come to the right place! I know how overwhelming it can be when your grass looms much higher than it should. It’s time to face your fears and tackle it – but you just don’t know where to start!

In this article, I’ll discuss some important tips to consider, easy-to-follow steps to mow tall grass without causing any damage, and give you the low-down on what tools you can use if you don’t have a lawnmower!

My Top Tall Grass Cutting Tips 

Before getting out your lawnmower, you might want to cover your bases and make sure you understand what you need to do (or not do) to prevent any damage to your grass, lawnmower, or yourself. Remember that long grass can very easily clog your lawn mower and you could have an even bigger problem on your hands if not done right!

Wear Protective Clothing

Always wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, closed shoes, safety glasses  and ear protection when mowing tall grass. Who knows what lies beneath the growth that you’re yet to discover? It’s better to be safe than sorry and make sure you’re protected!

Make Sure Your Grass Is Dry

Cutting wet grass can cause further problems that are best avoided. Make sure your grass is dry and that the morning dew has evaporated before mowing because wet grass can clog your lawn mower and clumpy grass clippings left on your lawn can suffocate it. 

For more helpful information on the best time of the day for lawn mowing, check out this article!

Sharpen Your Lawn Mower Blades

There is nothing worse than blunt lawn mower blades! If they are not sharp, they could tear through the grass, resulting in a rough, brown and unhealthy lawn. Sharpening your lawn mower blades regularly isn’t only needed when you’ve got to tackle very tall grass – it’s also a good habit to adopt in general if you’re dealing with a slightly overgrown lawn.

Pro tip: a regular blade is the preferred option when mowing tall grass. For more information on the difference between regular and mulching blades, check out this article!

Make Sure There Are No Kids Or Pets Nearby

Children and pets have minds of their own and are not aware of the dangers that are posed by grass cutting. It’s up to you to ensure that they’re out of harm’s way. It’s possible for your mower to strike stones or disturb an unfriendly visitor, like a snake, so it’s very important that kids and pets are kept away from the area you’re mowing before you begin.

Inspect The Lawn Before You Start

You never know what could be lurking beneath overgrown grass. It’s always a good idea to do an inspection of the area you’re planning on mowing so that you don’t run into any fallen branches, rocks or anything else that could potentially damage your mower and send pieces of wood or stone flying your way.

Pause At Regular Intervals 

Like any piece of equipment we use, they’re bound to overheat and switch off if used for too long at once without any breaks in between. Remember to pause and give your mower a chance to cool down regularlym or else you’ll need to put the mowing on hold and attempt to figure out how to get it started again.

For more tips on how to cut long grass, check out this video by YouTube user Creative for Fun:

4 Easy Steps To Cut Tall Grass 

Let’s move on to the practical steps to follow to cut overgrown grass! Here is an easy to follow 4-stage mowing process to help you tackle that tall and thick grass:

  1. First, use a weed whacker or string trimmer. A weed whacker or string trimmer will help you cut down a portion of the grass to make it easier for your lawn mower to successfully mow the rest.

Remember that you should never attempt to cut all the grass in one pass because this is harmful to roots and will affect the health of your grass going forward.

  1. Water the grass and then leave it undisturbed for a week. Sorry friends, but cutting tall grass isn’t a one-day kind of task (not if you want to do it right, anyway). The grass needs to have a chance to recover before you go in with your mower again. 

Once you’ve gone through the overgrown grass with a weed whacker, give it a good dose of water and let it rest for a week. 

  1. Time to pull out your lawn mower for a second round. A week after the first round of slashing through your tall grass, repeat the process but with your lawn mower instead of your weed eater or grass trimmer. Lawn mowers will give you a clean, even finish. This time around, try to aim for cutting your grass to around 6 inches or less.
  1. Clean up time. Rake and bag the grass clippings so that they don’t smother the grass lying beneath them. Alternatively, you can make a mulch bed with the clippings. 

For an in-depth and visual account of how to go about mowing your overgrown lawn, check out this video by YouTube user The Lawn Care Nut:

No Mower? No Problem!

If lawn mowing is new to you and you don’t own a mower or lawn tractor yet, you can also use a basic grass-cutting tool that can be operated by hand. These tools will obviously require some extra effort because they’re operated manually, but it’s definitely doable. 

The 3 most common hand tools that can be used to cut overgrown grass are scythes, garden sickles, and shears.   


Cleaning the yard using grass scythe swinging back and forth

Scythes are made up of long shafts called snaiths, offset handles and curved steel blades. To use a grass scythe, you’ll need to swing the blade back and forth when cutting long grass. The best way to use this is to make sure the blade is parallel to the ground as you maneuver it.

Check out this video by YouTube user FortyTwoBlades for an easy-to-follow visual demonstration of how to cut long grass with a scythe:

Garden Shears

Professional gardener pruning a grass with garden scissors

Garden shears  are basically oversized scissors that are meant for use outdoors in the garden.

They are one of the most preferred hand tools because they’re so easy to use. Shears are best used to cut small sections of long grass. When using your shears on your overgrown lawn, remember to hold the blade parallel to the ground for best results. 


A man wearing green gloves cleaning the grass with a sickle

Sickles are tools with C-shaped blades that were historically used as harvesting tools. They’re also very useful for cutting grass. To use a sickle, simply swing the blade across the grass at the point where you’d like to cut them.


How Tall Is Too Tall To Cut Grass?

A height that is too tall to cut grass would be anything more than 2 inches high. This is because the longer the grass blades, the more problematic it becomes for machines like mowers to handle. The clean-up afterward is also very time-consuming and difficult to manage.

What Is The Tool Used To Cut Tall Grass?

The tool used to cut tall grass is a lawnmower. However, there are several other tools that can be just as useful. These include weed eaters, strimmers, garden shears, scythes and sickles. Some of these are automated electric or gas-powered while others are manually operated.

How Can I Mow My Lawn Without A Lawnmower?

You can mow your lawn without a lawnmower by using another grass-cutting tool. There are several tools on the market such as weed eaters, strimmers, garden shears, scythes and sickles. 

Can You Use A Push Mower On Tall Grass?

You can use a push mower on tall grass. If you cut long grass with a string trimmer first, you should have no problem using a push mower to cut the excess grass. If you’re only using a push mower, it’ll take you longer and your mower may not manage.

Can A Manual Lawn Mower Cut Tall Grass?

A manual lawn mower can cut tall grass, however, they were not designed to be used on overgrown lawn. While most lawn mowers are capable of working their way through very tall grass, it will certainly take you a lot more time and it’ll require extra effort.

Now You Know How To Cut Tall Grass!

There you have it: everything you need to know about tackling that frustratingly long overgrown lawn that’s ruining the aesthetic of your yard. There’s nothing better than the look of a freshly cut lawn so say goodbye to spending days cooped up indoors and hello to picnics outdoors in the sun with your loved ones.

I hope you found this article helpful. If you did, please feel free to leave a comment below. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Last update on 2022-07-07 at 20:29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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