Being a good neighbor, you try to do your part to keep your property looking nice and neat, which includes faithfully mowing the lawn. You’ve always heard that if you cut the grass real short, it’ll grow better – plus you won’t need to cut it again so soon. But your yard seems to end up with brown, scorched areas after you’ve given it a nice trim.

Meanwhile, your neighbor, who doesn’t mow nearly as often as you do, has a lush green lawn. How could that be? Maybe it’s because they discovered that they get better results when their grass is left longer.

By raising your mower’s cutting blade to 3 inches, you, too, can have a green, lush lawn even during hot, dry weather. When grass is allowed to grow higher, it puts down deeper roots, which improves the soil and makes the lawn more resilient.

Longer grass protects the soil from the sun’s heat and helps it retain moisture. Put your hand on a patch of thick green grass and see how cool and moist it feels, even on the hottest days.

Grassy areas help keep our neighborhoods cooler by promoting photosynthesis, which acts as Mother Nature’s air conditioner. When we cut our grass too short, we interfere with this miraculous process. It’s easy to take grass for granted, but it does the very important job of keeping our yards moist and cool and putting carbon back in the soil where it belongs.

It doesn’t take much to make a big difference: All we need to do is get off our machines and raise the blades.

Rachel Burger

South Portland

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.