The best small lawn mowers are designed to clean up, trim, tidy and perfect the most petite of gardens. Not everyone has a lawn the size of Blenheim Palace. In fact, according to the Office of National Statistics, ‘the median garden size for a house in London is 140 square metres’ and in general London lawns are ’26% smaller than the national average.’ Therefore, a lot of people need one of the best small lawn mowers.
Having said this, most city lawns are even smaller when you take into account the space used for patios, sheds and wooden cabins. In these instances, the actual lawn area could be reduced to just 69m². That’s about the size of lawn this writer and all of his NW London neighbours had.
Lawn size is a key consideration when looking for a lawn mower and while we have a sterling selection in our guide to the best cordless lawn mowers (opens in new tab), most of them are simply too large for an average sized urban lawn. With this in mind we’ve created this handy feature to the best small lawn mowers that are the perfect size for cutting titchy lawns. After all, a smaller lawn mower with a narrower cutting deck will be much easy to manoeuvre up and down a small lawn than a machine that’s several inches wider and therefore a lot heavier.
You won’t find any of the best petrol lawn mowers (opens in new tab) here because they’re too big and noisy for an urban environment. Nor will you find any of the best robot lawn mowers (opens in new tab) because having a robot cut the grass of a small urban patch would be overkill when it can be completed using a standard lawnmower in about 10 minutes.
What you will find is a dandy collection of mostly cordless lawn mowers plus an electric corded model or two that are the perfect size for anyone with a small lawn, be it half the size of a tennis court or a lot smaller.
The best small lawnmowers you can buy in 2022
If you fancy the idea of going cordless, you might not find a better little performer than this keenly-priced model from Teutonic pressure-washer manufacturer Kärcher. Its small 33cm cutting deck and 35-litre grass catcher is just the right combination for quick wizzes round the sward and, because it’s so light, it’s really easy to manoeuvre and carry.
Some small budget mowers aren’t very well made and sport spindly handlebars that wobble and aren’t very comfortable. By contrast, this one comes with a very decent handlebar assembly that is both easy to fold and comfortable in the hand.
The construction of its 18v battery is another great asset because its corners are coated in rubber to prevent it from being damaged if dropped from a low height. Rather brilliantly, it also features an LCD screen with a battery-remaining readout in percentages. You should feasibly eke 40 minutes of running time out of it.
This mower cuts extremely well and almost right to the edge; it also mulches for those who prefer to fertilise their lawns with nitrogen-rich cuttings. Despite the lower voltage, the motor is a little titan that seemingly stops at nothing, ultra long grass notwithstanding. A top choice for urban lawnsmiths.
To see how our number one choice of small lawnmower stacks up against some quality opposition, be sure to check out our Kärcher LMO 18-33 vs Flymo EasiStore 300R Li (opens in new tab) comparison feature.
This mower from newcomer LawnMaster delivers a lot of bang for the buck, including two 2.0Ah batteries which takes its combined running time to a whopping 120 minutes of cordless cutting power.
Its 34cm cutting width is perfectly sufficient for lawns that are a little larger than the city norm while its six different cutting heights – from 20 to 70mm – means you have plenty of options for different types of grasses and lengths.
The LawnMaster ships with a 32L collapsible grass box which is a little smaller than the norm and, uniquely, a rear roller to deliver a smart striped finish. It’s also equipped with folding handles for easy storage. Meanwhile, the LawnMaster’s 24V brushless motor will last for years and it’s very quiet, too.
This mower is exceptional value given that it comes with two 4.0Ah batteries and a fast charger. It cuts grass really well, is easy to manoeuvre and it’s light enough to carry, too.
German horticultural supplier Gardena is perhaps best known for its popular garden watering systems but it also produces a huge range of manual garden tools, a couple of excellent robot mowers and this small-bodied 36v cordless mower designed specifically for urban-sized lawns.
The brightly-coloured PowerMax is equipped with a 32cm cutting deck, a 30-litre all-plastic grass collector and a mulching plug so it’s a perfect fit for diminutive lawns with a comfortable mowing area of up to 180 square metres. Its brushless motor, meanwhile, is quiet, exceedingly reliable and powerful enough for all but the longest of grasses.
While the moderately foldable handle-bar assembly is quite basic in design, the actual hand grip area is remarkably comfortable and features a power grip on both sides for both right and left-handed use.
The PowerMax has at least one great innovation that sets it apart from other mowers in this category – a very cool cutting height adjuster. Where most models use a lever to raise or lower the deck, this one comes with a QuickFit knob that is a joy to use. Simply push down on the button, turn the dial to your preferred cutting height and the whole chassis will spring up or down through ten levels from a lower-than average 20mm to 60mm.
The PowerMax uses two 18v batteries that share compatibility with other cordless products from Bosch. These batteries must be used in tandem or the mower simply won’t work. The not so great thing, however, is that it only comes with one battery charger so you will need to charge both in succession which is a bit of a hassle. I managed to eke out about 35 minutes of cutting time on a full charge.
The Gardena PowerMax feels very light on the front end when pushing it but it doesn’t seem to affect its performance which is as good as anything else on this page. Granted, it’s not the cheapest model on offer but its useful innovations put it a cut above all but the Kärcher and Lawnmaster.
Worx produces a wide range of excellent garden and power tools in a striking design livery that is unmistakably manly and undeniably cool. Take this mean-looking 30cm cordless offering, for instance. The WG730E uses a 20v Li-ion battery system to power the mower’s reliable brushless motor through most lengths of grass with little fuss. It’s a perfect package for any urban lawn and it’s cheap to buy, too (just £209 including battery and charger).
The Worx WG730E’s handlebar is comfortable to use even though it only has one power lever on the right and not on both sides like the similar sized Gardena above. Also, the cutting height can only be adjusted by inverting the mower and snapping the axel into one of three positions. Not a great solution, it must be said, but understandable given the low asking price. On the plus side, this mower is light enough to easily carry up some steps and it comes with a huge carrying handle, too.
If you’re looking for a keenly priced small-bodied cordless mower with impressive performance, give this one a go.
This T3 Award-winning cordless model is equipped with a 34cm cutting deck, a decent-sized fabric grass collector (35 litres), five cutting heights (25mm to 75mm) accessed via a simple height adjustment lever and a collapsible handlebar system that incorporates quick-release clips instead of awkward screw threads.
Despite being equipped with a brushed motor rather than a more durable brushless one, this little mower really impresses with its cutting efficiency. You should feasibly expect about 30 minutes of use on a single one-hour charge of its 2.5Ah battery – enough charge to cover up to three separate sessions on a small 70 square metre lawn. For added convenience, it has a battery power indicator just below the start button on the handlebar.
At a shade over £200 with battery and charger, this model is one of the cheapest here though it is pretty heavy for its size. Nevertheless, because it’s British, spares will be easy to obtain so that’s a bonus.
Check out our Cobra MX3440 vs Einhell GE-CM 18/33 Li (opens in new tab) comparison feature for more details.
This lightweight mower from Stihl is a cracking choice for small urban lawns. Aside from cutting the grass remarkably well – and right to edge – what really stands out is the way its brushless motor operates.
Instead of running at full tilt all the time, this mower features a permanent Eco mode that adjusts the speed of the blade depending on the length of grass. Hence, when tackling long stuff, it ramps up to full speed and when it senses little resistance against the blades it backs off to a gentle hum. A system like this not only saves a lot of battery energy – we’re on our fourth cut and the battery’s only half way empty – but it also helps keep noise to a minimum. And believe me, this little fella is so hushed you could probably mow the lawn on a Sunday at 6am and the neighbours would never know.
The Stihl is equipped with a small 33cm plastic cutting deck and a smaller-than-average 30-litre grass collector that can be unfolded to make emptying a veritable cinch. Its easily adjustable cutting height range of 25-65mm isn’t the best in the pack but it’s perfectly ample for the majority of UK grasses.
Stihl’s reliability record is second to none – it is, after all, the brand of choice among professional gardeners and landscapers – so chances are this titchy garden devil will last a heap of summers.
At 9.9kgs, the Bosch CityMower 18 is one of the lightest lawn mowers around and that’s a boon when it comes to pushing it and carrying it back to the shed. It also comes with Bosch’s famously comfy Ergoflex handlebar system that is ideal for both righties and lefties.
The CityMower’s height adjustable 32cm cutting deck and 31-litre grass collector are of optimum size for a small urban lawn and, because the chassis is fitted with extended grass combs, it really does cut right to edge of the lawn.
This model comes with a powerful 4.0Ah battery that provides about 25 minutes of cutting time. However, if you already own a set of Bosch power tools that use the 18v system, opt for the ‘solo’ model and use one of your own batteries instead. Bosch has a great reputation in this field so you can’t really go wrong with this model, especially if you’re looking for a smaller-than-average cutting deck.
A hover mower like this titchy 33cm model is only suitable for smooth lawns with no gnarly lumps and bumps. The Flymo EasiGlide is powered by electricity and comes with a small 33cm cutting deck which is ideal for really small lawns. And because it hovers, you can literally swing it around in an arc when you get to the end of each strip.
Its 20-litre grass box is on the small side but it’s easy to disengage. However, you will need to remove the blade to fit or add plastic spacers if you want to change the cutting height, which incidentally is a really low 10-30mm. This means it’s ideal for a bowling green type lawn. Just make sure the lawn is nice and level or it will shave some areas down to the top soil. You might also need a suitable 13amp extension lead if you don’t have an outdoor power source.
German brand Einhell enters the swardsmanship market with a great budget-priced model that, while not the prettiest of lookers, does the job and does it well. This is a 33cm mower and, at just 10.9 kgs, it’s light to carry and easy to store.
The Einhell comes with a battery and charger and is one of the cheapest ready-to-run models you can buy. It’s generally well designed and equipped with a brushless motor for unswerving reliability, a simple fold-over handle bar assembly for easy storage, and a three-setting height adjuster that takes the chassis from 25 to 65 mm – enough range for most types of common grasses.
If you’re not bothered by looks and just want a descent small-bodied mower that costs less than £200 complete with battery and charger, then you can’t really go wrong with this one. See how this mower fares against the Cobra MX3440V in our Cobra MX3440 vs Einhell GE-CM 18/33 Li (opens in new tab) comparison feature.
This cordless Flymo rotary mower has the narrowest cutting deck on this page (30cm) so it’s ideal for really, really small lawns. It’s a doddle to store, too, because it’s not only the smallest folding mower this writer has ever come across, but it stores in an upright position with its 30-litre grass collector clipped to the handle bar. Nice. Being so small also means it is exceptionally light – just 8.8kgs. Unusually for a mower of this size, the EasiStore runs on two 20-volt batteries at the same time, giving it a running time of around 30 minutes.
This mower cuts very well and can even create stripes using its rear roller. However, the cutting height mechanism is a faff that involves turning the machine over and manhandling the front and rear axles into a lower or higher position. Maybe that’s a price worth paying for a mower that is so easy to carry and store away. Incidentally a much cheaper electric version is also available for around £110.
Now read our Kärcher LMO 18-33 vs Flymo EasiStore 300R Li (opens in new tab) comparison feature to see how the Flymo fares against the winning Kärcher.
How to choose a small lawn mower
The first thing you need to decide on is cutting deck size which dictates the width of the cutting blade. For a small lawn this would be between 30cm (about 12 inches) – the smallest available size – and 34cm (about 13 inches). After 34cm, mower sizes tend to leap to 41cm (16 inches), so if you think you need to go larger than the models in this list, head straight over to our guides to the best cordless lawn mowers (opens in new tab) and best petrol lawn mowers (opens in new tab) where you’ll find a wide mix of different sized lawn mowers for every type of garden.
Electrically-powered corded lawn mowers are perfect for city lawns and they are among the cheapest to buy. However, this writer is not a fan of corded models because the cable needs to be constantly lassoed over and around garden obstacles. Also, I’m not that keen on having a 240 volt cable in the vicinity of a fast spinning blade.
If you can afford the extra outlay, you’ll find a cordless model is about ten times easier to use – and much much faster since there’s no cable to get in the way. You also won’t need to reach for an extension cable if you haven’t already got an outdoor power point to hand.
Now that you've got your lawn sorted, it's time to host a garden party. Check out the best barbecues (opens in new tab), best portable barbecues (opens in new tab) and best outdoor lighting (opens in new tab) for all the essentials.