The Top 15 Lawn Care Mistakes You’re Probably Making (And How To Fix Them)

I have bad news: you are probably making a mistake with your lawn. It’s okay; we all make mistakes. But the good news is that there is something you can do about it. 

In fact, there are many things that you could be doing right now to improve your lawn and get it back on track toward a lush, green paradise worthy of envy from neighbors and friends alike! 

Don’t Make these 5 Dumb Lawn Care Mistakes
Key Takeaways
– Lawn care mistakes can lead to an unhealthy and unattractive lawn.
– Watering, mowing, fertilizing, and maintaining your lawn are the basics of proper lawn care.
– Timing is essential when it comes to fertilizing your lawn.
– Avoid common lawn care mistakes such as overwatering, mowing too short, using the wrong fertilizer, and not aerating the soil.
– Seeking expert advice and following proper guidelines can help you achieve the healthiest and most beautiful lawn possible.

Here are 15 common mistakes people make when caring for their lawns and how to fix them!

Mowing Too Low

Cutting the grass too low can cause problems, including scalping, disease, brown patches and thatch.

Scalping occurs when the blades of grass are cut too low. This causes them to die off and grow back from the base of the plant rather than from its top (where it’s removed). This results in a stubbled appearance as well as increased damage to your lawn mower blade.

Disease can occur when you mow your lawn too short because diseases like brown patch thrive in moist conditions created by decaying plants and leaves. 

Brown patch thrives best during hot summer days when there is little airflow or wind to dry out these moist spots on your lawn causing them to become overrun with fungi like Phytophthora cinnamomi which may cause serious damage if left untreated for long periods of time!

Brown patches are caused by over-fertilization which causes an excess amount of nutrients entering into soil pores where they’re not needed causing browning due to lack of nitrogen supply compared with available carbon source supplied by decomposing organic matter found within soil profile itself!

Good lawn care is essential for keeping your yard looking its best. As the foundation of a healthy lawn, it’s important to know the basic tips for lawn care that you can use all year round.

Mowing With Dull Blades

Mowing with dull blades is a common mistake that can leave your lawn looking like a patchy mess. 

The more frequently you mow, the more often you need to sharpen your blades. You can tell if your blades are dull by the way they cut the grass: they should make a clean, even row, with no ragged edges or torn-up clumps of grass. If not, it’s time to sharpen!

First things first make sure you’re using good quality tools. Dull blades don’t just look bad; they also cause damage to nearby areas of grass as well as tear up what’s left behind in clumps when you’re done mowing (and then there’s nothing left for fertilizing). 

A hand-operated sharpener works best if all of this sounds too complicated (and yes, there are electric ones available too!). 

For those without any other options available at home or work though? You might want to consider investing in an attachment for electric models instead; it’ll save some time and money down the road because then all those people walking around outside won’t look like zombies from The Walking Dead anymore.

Timing is everything when it comes to fertilizing your lawn. Using the right fertilizer at the right time can make all the difference to your lawn’s growth and resilience. Learn more about the best time to fertilize your lawn with expert tips for optimal results.

Not Following The Mowing Pattern Every Time

The most important thing to do when mowing your lawn is to be consistent. That means cutting your grass in the same pattern every time, and using the same equipment.

Mow in a specific direction—Your first mow of the season should be done in a clockwise direction, while subsequent cuts should go counterclockwise. This will ensure that you get an even cut and aren’t missing any spots on the lawn.

Mow at the same height—If you want a manicured lawn, it’s important not to change mowing heights throughout spring and summer months (unless you’re trying for a shaggy look). Use either 1-1/2- or 2-inch blades during these times of year; shorter lengths can damage roots while longer ones prevent nutrients from reaching them!

Mow at regular intervals—There are several schools of thought on how often you should be mowing: Some people opt for weekly sessions, while others wait until their grass reaches 8 inches before taking care of it again (this is when it’ll start turning yellow). 

The most common recommendation seems to be once per week–if yours does need more than that due to excessive sunlight or other factors like drought conditions (which could cause stress), consider investing in heavier equipment like rotary blades which cut better than hand-held models might

It takes more than watering your lawn regularly to get that lush, green look. To achieve a beautiful lawn, you need to follow certain strategies based on your grass type and climate. Check out our guide on proven lawn care strategies to help your lawn thrive.

Leaving Grass Clippings Behind

Leaving grass clippings behind is a common mistake, but it’s actually good for your lawn. The old adage that you should rake your grass clippings up because they will decompose and add nutrients back into the soil isn’t quite true they’re full of nitrogen, which doesn’t break down in piles and instead makes them into a green stain on your driveway or sidewalk. 

But if you leave them to be recycled by microorganisms below ground level, they’ll break down and return those nutrients to nourish your soil over time.

The best way to take advantage of this natural recycling process is with a mulching mower: these machines chop up the cuttings before depositing them back onto your lawn as fertilizer. The result? A lush, green carpet in no time!

Type of Grass ClippingsImpact on LawnApplication Guidelines
Mulched Grass ClippingsProvides nutrients to soilMulch the lawn after every 2-3 mows
Bagged/Vacuumed Grass ClippingsPrevents thatch buildupDon’t bag clippings after every mow, leave some for mulching
Left Behind Grass ClippingsHinders PhotosynthesisNever leave clippings on the lawn, bag or mulch instead

Note: Leaving grass clippings on your lawn may seem like a time-saver but can actually hinder photosynthesis, make the lawn appear unsightly, and lead to thatch buildup. It is important to apply the appropriate method of grass clipping disposal based on the situation for maintaining optimal lawn health.

Forgetting To Aerate And Dethatch

It’s easy to forget about these two important maintenance steps, but your lawn will thank you for remembering.

Aeration is the process of removing small plugs of soil from the lawn to allow air and water to penetrate the soil more easily. A good aerator has dozens of tines that dig up chunks of grass, leaving behind healthy roots that will lead to healthier turf in no time.

Dethatching is the process of removing thatch, a layer of dead grass and roots that build up on top of the soil. 

Dethatching can be done manually with a rake or push mower (after first aerating) or by hiring an expert service like Lawn Love (a company with both manual dethatchers and gas-powered machines).

While most people know some basic lawn care tips, there are still some surprising ones that many homeowners are unaware of. These lesser-known tips can be game-changers in keeping your lawn healthy and green. Discover 10 surprising lawn care tips that you need to know now.

Skipping Pre-Emergent Weed Treatment

If you’re interested in preventing weeds from growing, pre-emergent weed control is the way to go. It’s not a cure for weeds that are already established, but it can help prevent new ones from sprouting up the following spring.

Pre-emergent weed control should be applied in the fall. It’s usually made up of a chemical product that does not kill existing plants, but prevents them from sprouting by inhibiting their growth at ground level. 

The most common active ingredient used in these products is iron sulfate (also known as “greensand”), which prevents seeds from germinating by keeping them from absorbing water and nutrients from the soil. 

As long as your lawn doesn’t flood too much during heavy rains or snow melts, this method will work quite well for you throughout most of winter and early spring (when most seeds would normally germinate).

Excessive Fertilizing

Fertilizing lawns is a good thing. However, if you overdo it, your lawn will end up with nutrient burn and become very susceptible to weeds. 

So be sure to only fertilize when needed, as indicated by soil testing (or simply by watching for signs of nutrient deficiency). If you’re putting down too much fertilizer all at once, either spread out applications or choose a slow-release or organic product that won’t leach into the ground so quickly.

  • Applying fertilizer at the wrong time of year.

When it comes to watering, timing is everything! But when it comes to fertilizer, timing isn’t quite so critical — unless you’re using an organic lawn care program that relies on organically bound phosphorus from composted materials (more on this later). 

In most cases though, applying your lawn’s fertilizer outside its ideal growing season will result in wasted efforts and potentially harmful effects on your turfgrass root systems.

Using too much nitrogen during hot weather: While many people like how green their grass gets after applying nitrogen-rich fertilizers such as ammonium sulfate or urea formaldehyde resin (UF), these products have one major drawback: 

They can increase heat stress on plants when temperatures rise above 80 degrees Fahrenheit especially if they’re applied more than once each month.

Using the wrong type of fertilizer: If possible use products that are specifically designed for your type of turfgrass and/or soil conditions if not then the excess nutrients may not get taken up properly which could lead to nutrient deficiencies over time

Taking care of your lawn can become overwhelming without proper guidance. A few mistakes in your lawn care routine can ruin your lawn’s health and appearance. The do’s and don’ts of lawn care guide provides you with expert advice for a healthy lawn by sharing the most common mistakes and how to avoid them.

Using Fertilizer That’s Too Concentrated

In addition to timing, the concentration of fertilizer can be a major factor in its effectiveness. If you apply too much fertilizer, your lawn will become susceptible to disease and other problems. Most manufacturers recommend that you follow their specific instructions when it comes to how much product is needed and when it should be applied.

In general, don’t overfeed your lawn; this will only cause harm and waste money. You also want to make sure that you’re using the right type of fertilizer for your specific grass type check with a professional if necessary!

Type of FertilizerConcentration Level (%)Application Guidelines
Granular Fertilizer10-20%Apply once a year before the growing season
Liquid Fertilizer5-10%Apply every 2 weeks during growing season
Slow-Release Fertilizer25-50%Apply every 8-10 weeks during growing season
Organic Fertilizer5-10%Apply in the Spring or Fall

Note: Using fertilizer that’s too concentrated can burn your lawn and can cause roots and blades to dry out. Applying the appropriate amount of fertilizer is important to keep your lawn healthy and green, as well as to prevent over-fertilization, which can lead to lawn damage or even death.

Watering The Wrong Way And At The Wrong Times.

Lawns need water to stay green and healthy. But how often you should water it is a bit more complicated.

The best way to maintain your lawn is by watering it when it needs it, not just when you remember to or feel like doing it. When it comes to lawn care, timing is everything. 

You can’t just sprinkle down any old amount of water whenever your grass will start to suffer if you do that!

Here are some basic rules for watering:

Don’t water during hot days (like afternoons). Because of evaporation, this is one reason why watering in the evening or at night works better than in the heat of the day. Watering during cold weather has similar benefits because there’s less chance of evaporation due to lower temperatures and less wind around that time as well.

Don’t hose down plants when they’re wet from rain or dew; wait until they’ve had time to dry before adding more moisture back into them with sprinkles from above! 

Otherwise, disease outbreaks might occur on top of other problems like mildew growth due both factors’ effects on plant health overall–the same goes for fertilizing too soon after rainfall events have occurred because then your plants may become susceptible^

Overlooking Bare Areas That Need Reseeding

If your lawn is in need of some extra love, reseeding is a great way to patch up dead or damaged areas. It also works well for repairing bare patches that have popped up as the result of weed removal. 

You can do this in either the spring or fall (it’s not ideal if you live in a warmer climate because there may not be enough time for your grass to grow back before it becomes dormant).

When choosing new seeds, keep in mind that certain ones are better for different types of grasses. 

For instance, fescues are known for their resilience and tolerance of shade while bermudagrass thrives on sunny areas with moist soil conditions. 

If you don’t know what type of seed will work best on your property already, consult an expert who will be able to give advice based on what they see when they visit your lawn they should also know exactly how much new seed is needed per square foot so that no wasted effort takes place!

Ignoring The Needs Of Your Lawn Type

When you’re getting started in lawn care, it’s easy to think of your lawn as one type of grass that needs the same amount of water, fertilizer and mowing. But if you do this, you’re missing out on ways to make sure your lawn looks its best.

The first step is knowing what type of grass (and therefore soil) your garden contains. There are many different types of soil and they determine how well a certain type will grow. 

For example, fescue lawns require less fertilizer than Kentucky bluegrass because they are more drought tolerant. They also require less water than other types because they can handle some shade or sun conditions better than others!

Lawn TypeWatering NeedsMowing NeedsFertilizing Needs
Bermuda Grass1 inch/weekCut 1/3 of blade heightEvery 4-6 weeks
Kentucky Bluegrass1-2 inch/weekCut 2.5-3.5 inches in heightEarly Spring, Late Fall
Zoysia Grass¾ inch-1 inch/weekCut 1/3 of blade height2-4 times yearly
St. Augustine Grass1 inch/weekCut 3-4 inches in height2-4 times yearly
Fescue Grass1 inch/weekCut 2.5-3.5 inches in heightSpring, Fall, Late Summer

Note: Different lawn types have different needs when it comes to watering, mowing, and fertilizing. It is important to know the needs of your particular lawn type to maintain its health and beauty. Failure to meet these specific needs can lead to weed growth, pest infestations, and other health issues.

Neglecting Your Grass In Winter Months

As winter approaches, you may start to notice that your lawn is looking a little worse for wear. That’s because grass needs water in order to stay healthy and green. If your grass goes without water for too long in the winter months, it will die and be hard to revive once spring arrives.

The best way to keep your lawn healthy during the colder months is by using a drip irrigation system or sprinkler that supplies water at the base of individual plants directly below the surface of the soil on a regular basis (at least once per week). 

If you don’t have access to this type of system or if you’re just not interested in using one (for example, if it’s too expensive), then simply add another layer beneath your existing lawn by spreading mulch over top of dirt/soil underneath where plants are growing now so they can continue receiving nutrients while they go dormant due lack moisture supply inside ground coverings themselves.”

Compacting Your Soil With Too Much Traffic

Another mistake that causes soil compaction is walking on the lawn after it rains. While you may be tempted to cut back on your watering during these times, don’t skip out on watering altogether. While it’s true that too much water can cause your lawn to turn yellow and brown, not enough water can lead to a lack of oxygen in the soil. 

This can cause erosion and ultimately lead to more compacted soil.

To avoid this problem, walk across your yard in a different direction than the mowing pattern when mowing the grass this way you won’t create paths that become compacted by foot traffic over time! 

If you have an old lawn aerator laying around (or if you’re lucky enough to borrow one), try using this tool before or after mowing season as well; it will remove some of the top layer of soil while also helping air reach deeper down into the ground where root systems live (and need oxygen).

Finally, consider using a walk-behind roller instead of just walking through your lawn: these rollers are specifically designed for compaction problems like those mentioned above; they’re lightweight enough for most homeowners but make sure that everyone who uses them knows how much pressure should be applied so they don’t do any damage beyond removing compaction!

Type of TrafficImpact on Soil Compaction
Foot TrafficCauses minimal soil compaction, but excessive foot traffic can lead to soil compaction and reduce soil’s air and water movement ability.
Pet TrafficPets like dogs can cause moderate soil compaction with their paws as they run around and play on the lawn.
Lawn EquipmentLawnmowers, tractors, and other heavy equipment can cause severe soil compaction due to their weight.
Soil TypeSoil’s texture, content, and structure also contribute to soil compaction, with clay soils being more prone to compaction than sandy soils.


We hope this article has helped you to better understand the lawn care mistakes you’re probably making. 

If you’ve been guilty of these before, don’t worry—there’s no time like the present to turn things around and make your garden look its best! 

Whether it’s by aerating your soil or learning how much water your plants need, these tips will help keep your plants healthy while also saving money and time in the long run.

Further Reading

15 common mistakes in lawn care from Reviewed: A guide to correcting common mistakes that homeowners make when it comes to lawn care.

The biggest lawn care mistakes from Earth Development Inc: A comprehensive guide that outlines the most significant lawn care mistakes and suggests a few solutions to these mistakes.

7 Common Lawn Care Mistakes You Are Probably Making Right Now from Tom’s Guide: This article discusses the most common mistakes homeowners make when it comes to lawn care and provides recommendations for avoiding them.


What are some lawn care basics?

Lawn care basics include watering, mowing, fertilizing, and maintaining the lawn. Proper lawn care can be achieved by implementing a routine schedule for each of these tasks.

When is the best time to fertilize your lawn?

The best time to fertilize your lawn is during the fall season. During this time, grass roots are more receptive to nutrients, which helps them to store food for the long winter months.

How often should I mow my lawn?

The frequency of lawn mowing varies based on the grass type, season, and weather conditions. However, as a rule of thumb, you should mow your lawn at least once a week during the growing season.

What are some common lawn care mistakes?

Some common lawn care mistakes include over watering, using the wrong fertilizer, mowing too short, not aerating the soil, and adding too much or too little fertilizer.

How can I avoid lawn care mistakes?

You can avoid lawn care mistakes by following proper lawn care guidelines and advice from experts in the field. It’s also essential to understand your grass type and climate and implement a routine schedule that works best for your lawn needs.