Remember being a kid, waking up to find dew on the grass, and thinking it was magical? Wet, dewy grass is one of the best things about getting outside before 8am, but it isn’t the best thing for mowing.
It makes sense to want to mow your grass early before it gets too hot, but if you try to mow before the dew dries off the grass, you can experience some issues.
Dew weighs your grass down and can make your grass look patchy if you mow while it’s still wet. If you absolutely have to mow your grass while it has morning dew, there are a few things you can do to make the job easier for you.
Can I Mow Grass in the Morning Before the Dew Dries?
It is highly recommended that you do not mow grass that is covered with morning dew. Wet grass will not cut anywhere near as well as dry grass does. This can leave your grass looking uneven and patchy with torn blades.
Torn grass blades are an invitation for disease and other problems for your grass. This can lead to infection in your yard that needs to be taken care of immediately.
Will Dewy Grass Hurt My Lawn Mower?
Unfortunately, if you mow your grass while there is still dew on the ground, there is a risk of damaging your lawn mower. Wet grass clumps, meaning it can clog your lawn mower and make the job unpleasant and much harder than normal.
Wet, dewy grass can also have a negative impact on the blades of your lawn mower. It can cause them to become dull and less efficient.
How Long Does It Take for Dew to Dry in the Morning?
Once the sun rises completely, it shouldn’t take long for dew to dry up. In most cases, you should be able to mow dry grass around 8am.
If you wait until at least 8am to mow, the sun will be high enough in the sky for the dew to be dry completely while avoiding the mid-day heat.
What is the Best Time to Cut Grass?
The best time to cut your grass is in the middle of the morning between 8am and 10am. Between 8 and 10, your lawn will be dry, and the blades won’t be weight down anymore. This means they are standing straighter and have a higher chance of being cut properly.
If you have a lawn that faces north, the middle of the morning might not be the best option for you. With a north-facing yard, there will be a shadow cast by your house in the morning that prevents the dew from drying.
In the case that you do have a north-facing yard, the best time to cut your grass is between 4pm and 6pm. This is usually when temperatures start to cool down and the heat won’t be stressing the grass.
Can I Mow Morning Dew Grass with an Electric Mower?
You should absolutely never use an electric lawn mower to mow grass that is wet or dewy. Water and electricity are not friends, and you have a massive risk of being shocked. The chances of being shocked is even higher if you need to use an extension cord!
Can I More Morning Dew Grass with a Riding Lawn Mower?
You cannot use a riding lawn mower to cut dewy grass in the morning. These types of mowers run the risk of sliding and slipping on the wet grass, especially if there is any type of hill. This can cause you to get in an accident on the mower.
Reasons You Should Avoid Mowing Grass with Morning Dew
There are several reasons you should avoid mowing your grass when it still has dew on it.
Wet Grass is Hard to Mow
When grass is wet, the blades are hard to slice through because they are slick. This will leave you with a very uneven looking yard. It could potentially take two or three passes over one patch of wet grass for it to cut properly.
Disease Can Spread
Fungus grows best in wet environments, so mowing your grass when it is wet can spread disease across your lawn. One of the most common diseases that gets spread is called Brown Patch Disease.
Brown Patch Disease is a fungus that literally causes brown spots in your grass. This is because wet grass clumps and has a harder time drying out properly. The wet clumps of grass are incredibly more likely to experience disease.
Wet grass clippings can stick to the bottom of your lawn mower and can grow mold without you realizing. This mold can then be spread throughout your lawn the next time you mow.
Wet grass also requires more cleanup than dry grass because of how clingy grass is when it is wet. If the lawn mower isn’t properly dried after use, you risk the mower breaking and needing to be replaced.
If you mow the grass when it is wet, you have to scrape the deck, brush blades of grass off the tires, and wipe down the side and top of the mower body. You will also need to take care of any potential stains.
Freshly cut grass that is wet has higher levels of chlorophyll, meaning it will stain things easier. This includes your mower, clothes, shoes, and driveway.
What If I Have No Choice Other Than Mowing Dewy Grass?
If you absolutely can’t wait until the dew is dry, there are some things you can do to increase your chances of a good mow.
Make sure your mower blades are either brand new or incredibly sharp. This will ensure that they cut the grass instead of tearing it.
Use a lubricant to keep wet grass clumps from sticking to the mower deck.
Raise the deck so you are cutting less grass at a time to reduce clumps.
Rake the lawn first to help the grass stand up straighter.
Finally, empty the mowing bag frequently to keep the weight of the mower down.
Hi, I’m John Stephens, chief editor and writer for Totalgardener.com. I’ve been gardening and raising animals for over 15 years starting with a small backyard plot in Northern Virginia where I grew corn, potatoes, squash, and using a high mulch technique called the Ruth Stout Method. I also raised ducks and small mammals for meat and eggs in a movable pen similar to the ones used by Joel Salatin. I later moved to Colorado where I experimented with growing greens using aquaponics inside. I eventually added a microgreens setup and home sprouting operation. I’m excited to share everything I’ve learned plus more from the other local gardening and animal raising experts I know.