What Happens To Grass If We Don’t Cut It?


Nothing makes an adult feel peer pressure, like seeing their neighbors outside mowing their lawn. Of course, almost every homeowner feels like they need to keep their lawn nicely trimmed. It’s one chore that instantly makes every property look better and ultimately affects how the neighborhood looks. However, many people still wonder what happens to grass if we don’t cut it.

Grass grows taller and forms clumps, The stems turn woody, and the grass pushes out a seed head. This creates patchy areas within the lawn. Nutrients are used and not replaced, and this provides the appropriate conditions for weeds to germinate. Eventually, the lawn will be overrun by weeds and return to a natural state.

If you have ever driven (or walked) past an abandoned property, you may have noticed that the grass is quite tall but doesn’t have that luscious green appearance. Grass won’t stop growing because it isn’t being cut regularly. After all, if it did that, we wouldn’t need to continue mowing the lawn every week. 

Many people wonder what would happen if they gave up this weekly chore and just let their grass grow out. Keep reading to find out what could happen to your lawn if you stopped mowing it.

What Happens If The Grass Doesn’t Get Cut?

One thing you can definitely expect if you stop cutting the grass is for it to keep on growing. Actually, in the spring and summer, when the sun’s at its warmest, the grass will grow faster. Don’t get too excited, though; this won’t be a lawn full of beautiful grass. Since the grass isn’t being cut, it won’t get the nutrients it needs.

Lawn clippings are an excellent source of nutrients, and they can be spread out after the grass is cut to be used as organic matter. This encourages healthy growth, and getting in the routine of cutting the grass once it gets taller than 2 inches can continue this cycle. If you break the cycle and skip cutting the grass altogether, it will likely grow very patchy.

While the grass may be growing quicker in the warm weather, you’ll probably notice that it grows at different lengths. The uneven grass and lack of nutrients will lead to brown spots appearing throughout your yard. Until the lawn gets cut and proper nutrients get spread through the area, grass likely won’t grow in those dormant areas.

At first, this will look unattractive. Who wants an overgrown lawn with bald patches? If you continue to leave the grass unattended, then weeds or wild grass will take over those brown spots. Often 

Is Overgrown Grass More Difficult To Cut?

What happens to overgrown grass when we decide to cut it? Overgrown grass is always going to be more difficult to cut than shorter blades. Some homeowners find overgrown grass almost impossible to take care of with just their lawnmower alone. Not only will the long blades be difficult to deal with, but longer clippings spread are also harder to dispose of.  

Depending on how long you let the grass grow, there could be various weeds that have made a home in your yard. Some of these weeds could be more difficult to get rid of as well. Simply giving them a buzz with the lawnmower won’t be enough. If you want to rid your yard of these weeds, they will need to be dug out from the roots.  

How Long Can Grass Grow If Not Cut?

If you’re wondering how long grass can grow before it gets cut, there are a few factors that need to be considered. At first, it will just continue to grow. Since there are many different types of grass, they will each take on their own overgrown look. What your lawn will look like depends on what type of grass grows there.

One thing you may need to be concerned about are the homeowner laws in your area. In some cities, there is an 8-inch limit. This means that if homeowners allow their lawns to grow longer than 8 inches, they could face a fine. Every homeowner has minimal maintenance requirements for their property, and in certain areas, grass length is one of them.

However, if you live in a rural area where these laws aren’t in place, you may have the freedom to allow your grass to keep on growing. When this happens, the grass doesn’t grow straight up to create a very tall wall like you may have imagined. Actually, it takes itself back to a more natural forest state. Once grass reaches a certain height, it begins to bend over.

In the first year of growth, you will probably notice that the grass is uneven. However, the second year of not being cut will lead to grass becoming a place covered in clovers, wildflowers, and weeds. At this point, it’s beginning to look more like an overgrown wilderness. Eventually, if you continue to let it grow, new types of grass and weeds will take over.

What Are The Problems That Arise From Not Cutting The Grass?

The biggest problem that people face with an overgrown lawn is that it becomes an unruly mess. The grass takes on a life of its own and starts to look unsightly. While you may be thinking, “this is my property, I can do what I want,” if you live in a residential neighborhood, an overgrown lawn is bringing down the appeal of your street. 

Not only will your property be the unsightly spot of the neighborhood, but an overgrown lawn could also cause problems for yourself if you enjoy spending time outdoors. It will be much more difficult for you to get across the lawn, and if you have kids or animals, they won’t be able to play on the lawn safely. 

Many people don’t consider overgrown grass because it can actually become a dangerous spot for your family to be near. The longer grass creates a lot of shade, so often pests and other small critters will make a home in there. There’s one animal in particular that loves overgrown grass, and many homeowners want nothing to do with them: snakes.

Not all snakes are dangerous, but if there are poisonous snakes in your area, it’s one animal you don’t want making a home in your yard or anywhere near your family. Big leaves allow plenty of hiding spots for snakes, which means that the lawn will not be a safe spot for your kids to be playing in. 

Will Grass Die If It Gets Too Long?

Grass won’t die off once it reaches a certain length. If it gets too tall, it will bend down and begin to create a more wild-looking environment. Actually, overgrown grass is often in a healthier state than short grass. However, this doesn’t mean you should allow your grass to grow to a long state between cuts to keep it healthier. That could have a negative outcome.

In certain areas, homeowners must follow the laws and keep their grass on the shorter side. If you live in one of these areas or prefer a nicely trimmed lawn, frequent trimming is actually healthier than allowing it to grow out. If the grass starts to grow out to a longer length then gets cut, it could go into grass shock.

If this happens, the grassroots will start to diminish, and then the grass will weaken. Weaker grass is more susceptible to diseases and insect infestations. 

What Insects Will Overgrown Grass Attract?

If you don’t cut your grass, then the overgrown lawn will attract many insects that you probably don’t want around. This is especially true if you enjoy spending time outside. Mosquitos, fleas, and ticks are all attracted to long overgrown grass. If you have any pets, you won’t want these pests on your property, especially fleas. 

When fleas are present in your grass, it won’t be long until they find a way to get into your home. They can easily attach themselves to your cat or dog’s fur and lay eggs all over them and your home. If you don’t have pets, you are still at risk of a flea infestation. They can jump onto your socks or pants to get into your home.

Conclusion: What Happens To Grass If We Don’t Cut It?

If you don’t cut the grass, it will begin to grow back to a more wild state. Your lawn will eventually become a big tangled mess full of various types of grass, wildflowers, weeds, and leaves. While some homeowners prefer their lawn to be in its natural state, it’s important to know that long grass comes with risks that make it an unsafe spot for the family to play.

Many pests, including snakes and insects, are attracted to long grass and the shade it provides. These could be a danger to your family. If you want to avoid this happening, you should keep your lawn on the shorter side.

Allowing your grass to grow too long could cause problems with the neighbors. The appearance brings down the appeal of your neighborhood, and some may file complaints. When this happens, if the lawn isn’t taken care of, the city could give you fines or even evict you from the house.

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Tony O'Neill

I am Tony O'Neill, A full-time firefighter, and professional gardener. I have spent most of my life gardening. From the age of 7 until the present day at 46. My goal is to use my love and knowledge of gardening to support you and to simplify the gardening process so you are more productive

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