Experts warn people off mowing lawns until July

How early you should mow your lawn is a question being asked by gardeners in the UK as mild weather seems to be setting the grass growing already
How early you should mow your lawn is a question being asked by gardeners in the UK as mild weather seems to be setting the grass growing already in 2024 -Credit:Getty

Garden enthusiasts have been told to postpone mowing their lawns until July following a serious warning from gardening experts. The combination of dreary April weather and a sunny start to May has left many green-fingered Brits eager for a chance to trim their turf but the advice is now to hold off.

Sir David Attenborough is backing the call to delay lawn maintenance, urging the nation to postpone their usual summer garden grooming. Wildlife specialists are also endorsing this request, underlining the significance of daisies, weeds, and wildflowers found in our gardens for insects such as bees, butterflies, and wasps.

These insects play an essential role in pollination and maintaining a healthy ecosystem during the spring and summer months. Cutting down grass can interfere with this process and lead to the loss of vital insect populations that are already endangered and crucial to our own survival.

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Sir David Attenborough said on BBC's Wild Isles nature programme about the UK: "Nowhere here is richer in wildflowers and insect pollinators than our traditional hay meadows. Sadly, in the last 60 years, we've lost 97 per cent of this precious habitat. But with nature-friendly farming, meadows can be restored to provide a haven for wildlife.

"It's all about the timing. Delaying mowing until mid-July allows birds and insects to complete their breeding and flowers to set their seed."

Plantlife, a UK wildlife organisation, has underscored the seriousness of the situation by declaring: "We've lost approximately 97% of flower-rich meadows since the 1930s and with them gone are vital food needed by pollinators, like bees and butterflies.

"But your lawn can help! A healthy lawn with some long grass and wildflowers benefits wildlife, tackles pollution and can even lock away carbon below ground. With over 20 million gardens in the UK, even the smallest grassy patches add up to a significant proportion of our land which, if managed properly, can deliver enormous gains for nature, communities and the climate," reports The Express.

Monty Don has previously given the date of June 21, whereas Sir David opts for mid-July, which would be on or around July 15. Certainly, the longer you can go from now to July 15 the better.

Several groups and authorities across the UK have pledged to take part in No Mow May 2024. Newport City Homes said: "This year, Newport City Homes will be taking part in Plantlife's bee-friendly campaign, No Mow May. The campaign encourages individuals and social landlords to help bees, butterflies, and other wildlife by letting wildflowers grow on lawns and green spaces throughout May instead of mowing them".

NHS Grampian in Scotland has thrown its weight behind the campaign, sharing: "Let it grow, let it grow! We're taking part in No Mow May again this year, with many patches of our estate across NHS Grampian already left to grow wild. Not only does this allow all those essential pollinators to get to work and in turn support our food industry but it enriches the soil (and the 'beasties') underneath, and helps to clean the air."