Don’t Mow, Let it Grow!

Mar 30

Take Action for Wildlife: Don’t mow, let it grow!


Photo credit: Grace Bettayeb


1. Protect our dandelions. Hold off with that first cut of grass till late April to allow dandelions feed the bees until other flowers come into bloom.

2. When you do start cutting the grass manage your lawn in a nature friendly manner cutting just every 4 to 6 weeks or leaving it as a long flowering meadow.


Noticed any wildflowers blooming in your garden yet? The weather’s warming up, and with it, flowers are starting to bloom in force. That means the pollinating insects are ready to come out as well and start getting down to business. Dandelions are some of our most enterprising native wildflowers, growing in all sorts of places, blooming early, and producing a lot of nectar and pollen. Early in the year, dandelions are a crucial source of food for pollinators like bees and butterflies, especially the bumblebee queens emerging from hibernation in early spring. So to help our insects thrive, it’s important not to cut the grass too early, as by doing so you’re removing an important food source. 

Leaving the grass to grow gives other wildflowers a chance to get a foothold as well, giving the pollinators even more food to choose from. The more wildflowers in our gardens and roadside verges, the more insect life we’ll see. At a time when insect populations are declining at an alarming rate, it’s important to do what we can to help them out in our local areas.

Perfectly manicured lawns might match the neighbours, but they’re wastelands for wildlife. Just by letting your grass grow taller, you can create mini-meadows that support local biodiversity. Remember: don’t mow, let it grow!

When you do mow the lawn you can make a few changes to make your lawn more wildlife friendly.

  • Consider raising the height you cut at so the wildflowers can grow back quicker
  • Try cutting the lawn on a four to six week cycle as that allows dandelion and clover to bloom and feed insects.  
  • You can even try to develop a long flowering wildflower meadow on some of your lawn. This is a traditional style meadow that is cut only once a year. This takes planning and managment so check out the link below on tips for developing a long flowering meadow.


For more info on how to mange your lawn for pollinators read this blog by the All Ireland Pollinator Plan

For fun dandelion graphics see here