Our summer in South Africa runs from November-February, and we expect beautifully hot, dry, sunny days, with average highs of 29°C. It’s good practice when cutting grass in summer to remove no more than one-third of the grass blade, leaving a maximum height of 9-10 cm. You should try not to always mow in the same pattern, instead alternate the cutting direction each time you mow. It’s important to cut regularly, as mowing with the right technique and frequency makes the lawn more resistant to fungal infections, and helps create a dense turf with no bare patches which prevents weeds from finding space to thrive.
Brush cutters and other gardening tools make it easier to keep your garden neat and tidy. Tools increase your efficiency and productivity in the garden meaning you can do more in less time. Gardening tools such as brush cutters, petrol lawn mowers, edge trimmers, chainsaws, leaf blowers and other gardening tools and accessories are ideal if you do not have a lot of time to prune and preen your garden. Large or small gardens need care and attention to ensure your flowers and plants are healthy to continue growing. You should choose a brush cutter most suited for your needs, whether you’ll be using it for trimming grass, small bush or under growth. If you need to clear very thick and rough or large areas, Heavy Duty Brush Cutters are a better option than just a grass trimmer. Brush cutters are usually a lot more robust and stronger as they come in different power outputs and engine sizes. This gives you more options when choosing brush cutters as you can choose one that is right for the job. Brush cutters are versatile so you can also use the machine for clearing shrubs, thinning smaller trees, and undergrowth. For comfort and safety, choose a brush cutter that has an anti-vibration feature. This can reduce tiredness in your hands caused by gripping the handle bars tightly. The vibrations use up more of your energy so an anti-vibration feature can reduce energy loss.
Avoid using electric lawnmowers, brush cutters or petrol lawn mowers when the grass is wet. The grass mulch clogs up the blades, and is particularly detrimental to the chassis on your electric lawn mower or petrol mower. The moisture causes rusting and shortens the life of the chassis.
One should always prepare the lawn by raking up sticks, stones and flattening out the mole-hills. The petrol lawnmowers and electric lawn mowers definitely don’t like these – and the humps of sand from mole-hills can bend the motor shaft. Make sure the blades are sharp, we don’t usually recommend sharpening them because it is so difficult to get them perfectly balanced, so we usually say replace them with new. If the blades are out of balance it will damage the bearings in the motor of an electric lawnmower due to bad vibrations. The nuts and bolts on the whole mower or brush cutter also get loose and go missing due to vibration.
Obviously you will need to mow at least once a week in Summer, while the grass grows so quickly. If you have a model of petrol or electric lawn mower with a grasscatcher, you won’t need to rake the grass – but you will have to empty it onto a compost pile somewhere. We also suggest spreading the grass clippings out around flower beds. This keeps the moisture in for the flowers, and the weeds down.
To get a really neat finish on the lawn, mow it in vertical and horizontal overlapping stripes, rather than circles. Overlap each strip by the width of a wheel, so as not to get a stripe of uncut lawn between each mowed strip. Unfortunately, a brush cutter does not give this nice stripey finish, and can be a bit untidy. This is because it is not designed for ‘mowing’ lawn, but rather for cutting edges, under bushes where a mower can’t get to, and for doing heavier duty cutting of brush, veldgrass etc.
Changing direction at every mowing session will ensure the grass grows more upright, instead of lying flat in one direction.
At the end of your mowing session, scrape underneath your petrol lawn mower or electric lawn mower with a plastic baking spatula. Make sure you get any grass clumps off, and leave it out on a sunny day to air dry, so that it doesn’t rust from the underside.
Then sit back on your patio, with a cool drink, glass of wine or a beer and admire your good looking lawn!
Be sure to buy the best quality machines for your needs. We as a retailer have a wide range of trusted, top quality brands and we offer expertise to match this. This is important if you want to ensure you have a hassle-free experience with your brush cutters, electric lawn mowers or chainsaws, or any other outdoor power products. We can also repair your garden equipment if it breaks down or needs servicing/maintenance.
Based in Kloof, KZN, we at Kloof Lawnmower Centre sell several different brands of electric lawn mowers, petrol lawn mowers (with or without grasscatchers), ride-on lawn mowers, brush cutters, edge trimmers, chainsaws, leaf blowers, generators, high pressure cleaners and a range of garden and power tools. We have amongst our staff, over fifty years of experience, and they are specially trained for the department in which they work. We stock a range of spare parts and accessories and can conduct in-house repairs.
A good cutterbar lube for your chainsaw has high tack properties, which allows the oil to cling to the bar and chain. This promotes better lubrication in the groove of the bar and prevents premature chain wear. One should never substitute old engine oil or vegetable oil for a brand name oil eg: STIHL chain lubricant. Much research has gone into the qualities needed from this oil and the special tackifier additives prevent the oil slinging off the bar onto boots and clothing. Using an oil that does not have these properties can ultimately be harmful, because the excess is sprayed onto the ground or into the environment. Although it may seem cheaper to use at first, you’ll pay in the long run on the replacement of bars and chains that haven’t been lubricated well and then been worn unnecessarily.
You should never turn your four-stroke petrol mower on it’s side. This could cause oil to leak into the cylinder and very often drowns the air filter. It would then be very hard to start and the air filter would need replacing if it’s a cartridge type. When cleaning the mower, always put it in the ‘wheelie’ position ie. on it’s back wheels, front wheels in the air, spark plug up. Using a plastic spatula, scrape off the grass from under the base. On a hot day put the mower out to air dry. This will extend the life of your chassis.
Always make sure the mower is not running 😉
When storing your petrol lawn mower or brush cutter for the Winter break, the fuel tank should be emptied. If fuel is left in the tank it could cause problems starting it up next season because the fuel loses it’s combustibility, and can gel up in the carburettor. It is advisable to let the machine idle until it runs out of fuel and stops on it’s own. On a four stroke mower, make sure the oil level is topped up before storing it. Then store away in a normal position under cover in a dust-free, dry place.
Now that the weather is dry you will be mowing less frequently. If you fertilise in Autumn be aware that it will not have any effect until Spring. If you have been using a mulching mower (eg: Lawnstar UTE58), you should not need to fertilise. When you think it is the last cut of the season before settling into Winter, leave the grass cut slightly higher than normal.