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Can you cut grass when it is wet?

Should you cut grass when it’s wet? There are so many opinions about this, here are some things to consider.


Firstly you will see plenty of professional gardeners cutting grass in the wet which suggests that it is not a problem. As professional gardeners they are likely to have a range of equipment and the experience to know when they can go ahead and when to wait.


What you won’t see when grass I wet is a professional mowing with a means lead connecting to an electric mower. Please don’t try this, water and electricity are never a good combination. Plus the extra load on the motors from the wet grass may damage the mower.


Cutting wet grass is not ideal, the best conditions are when its dry, all machinery performs better when the grass is dry.


If you have tried cutting wet grass you are likely to have encountered the following problems:


  1. The grass cuttings are not collected properly.

  2. The cuttings gather in a wet clump and drop in messy piles.

  3. The lawnmower gets clogged up with wet mulch, the deck fills up with stickly wet cuttings.

The wheels gather up the wet grass which drops off in messy piles.

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What is the best way to cut wet grass?

If you are in a position where you have limited time and need to cut the grass what is the best advice?


Use the best mower for the job. Big heavy mowers on wet grass will leave tram lines from the machine. Remember it’s not just the grass that’s wet but the soil underneath which can be compressed. This means that using a mower with a roller on is also going to be more problematic, you will also notice that roller mowers will churn up the ground as you turn them at the end of a line.


Use a grass collector and empty the collector more frequently, wet grass is much heavier and will compact making it difficult to empty. Plus if the collector fills there is more change of compacting in the deck area.


If you are dropping clumps of wet grass, your mower is not picking up properly there are a couple of things to look at. First, is your blade sharp? If you are battering the blades rather than cutting the performance will be improved in wet and dry conditions. The second, and something you can do straight way, is to check the height. Lifting the deck by a notch or two will make a significant improvement.

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Finally, if you have cut wet grass and you are putting your mower away – clean it!! Please follow your manufacturer's instructions. Mowers left with wet clumps underneath, and grass collectors with wet mulch left in are going to create problems for the future. A wipe over with a brush will leave your equipment in pristine and ready to mow again.