How a reel mower cuts the grass makes a difference


cleanairgardening_2064_19193216 blades 2

The blades on Reel Mowers work just like a pair of scissors; they have sharp edges that snick together to lift and cut individual blades of grass. This style creates clean, even looking cuts across the top of your lawn. With a reel mower, you can easily duplicate the striped pattern found at ballparks and manicured gardens.

There are several rotating blades on a reel mower, paired up with a single back blade. The back blade is usually fixed at the base of the rotating cylinder, in-between the wheels. As the wheels spin, they turn the rotating blades. The rotating blades rotate towards the back blade, gathering up loose stalks of grass as they turn through their arc. When the back blade brushes against the spinning blades, it cleanly cuts any grass or weeds caught in between.

Grass that is cut cleanly is also healthy grass. Since reel mowers cut the grass with interlocking blades, they do not tear or shred plants as they cut. Grass heals quickly from these clean cuts and is less likely to suffer from diseases and insect attacks than grass with ragged edges. When plants spend less time fighting disease, they have more energy to use developing deep, drought resistant roots.

Here are a few tips for mowing with a reel mower:

Mow early.

Make sure you mow before it gets hot. Don’t worry with a reel mower you will not wake the neighbors. With reel mowers, there is no waiting to mow. Go ahead and start your day without being a bad neighbor.

Mow regularly.

This is so the grass does not get too tall. A reel mower will work more efficiently when your grass is cut on a regular basis.

Walk with a good, steady pace.

The more consistent you move, the better the reel mower works. If you walk too slowly, the manual mower can bind up. Walking at a steady pace prevents a lot of frustration.

Keep blades properly adjusted.

Properly adjusted blades will give a clean cut, making your grass healthier.

Mow in rows and overlap them.

Start at one side of your lawn and work your way across in rows. Make sure to overlap rows. This will allow each section of grass to be mowed twice, once in each direction. This technique gives your lawn a great cut.

Figure out how your grass grows.

Sounds silly, I know. But grass has different growth patterns. Experiment with your mowing patterns so you can get the best cut for your yard. Also, try different cutting heights for grass to see which works best for the health of your lawn.

It’s important to keep the blades sharp for the cleanest cut…

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Virginia Bartlett 04.09.10 at 11:12 pm

Thanks for this info. It is great to learn before starting to mow the lawn!

2 admin 04.12.10 at 9:32 pm

@Virginia Bartlett,

Glad to hear it helped!

3 Coined 10.17.10 at 3:35 pm

you can easily duplicate the striped pattern found at ballparks.

How is that? Been wondering that for years?

4 steve 10.25.10 at 2:11 pm

@Coined, There are several ways to achieve that patterned look. The grass type will be a factor. One way is to have a roller on the back of the mower which lays the grass down to give it a certain look. It also achieved by the direction the grass is cut.

5 frances 04.28.12 at 9:59 pm

i just bought a reel mower and found i had to go over spots several times to get a cut. it seems like the rollers squash the grass or weeds too low for the blades and i set it for the closest cut. is the grass too wet or the lawn too bumpy for a reel? can i remove the rollers and still use the mower? this the first cut of the season and some spots are thick and long.

6 steve 05.01.12 at 3:59 pm

@frances, Yes you can try removing the rollers and see if that helps, but keep in mind, reel mowers do best on well manicured lawns that are generally weed free and fairly flat. The reason weeds are a problem is they are typically much taller than the grass and when the reel tries to cut them the long height keeps them from getting between the reel and the cutting bar.

7 tom sherman 05.31.14 at 6:48 pm

yes you can remove the rollers. remove them. tie a cord in each hole where the rollers used to be, wind them around the handle and tie their open ends together. in short all you need is two cords.

check anything I’ve said on this site using my name if that’s possible to get more detailed instructions

Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>