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The Zen of Mowing
This is my favorite time to be outside, when it’s cool enough for a sweatshirt and too early for the bugs. I meant to mow for an hour but was enjoying it so much I stayed out for the whole morning. There’s more to do; on a 45-acre arboretum, the mowing never ends. Good thing I enjoy it.
The early trees are flowering and the later ones are leafing out. The apple orchard across the street has laid out its beehives for pollination, and some of the early bees are enjoying our serviceberries and magnolias. There are reports of hummingbirds and I have feeders out, but no sign of the little needlenoses yet.
Published in General
From time to time I drive hundres of miles to go mow various things at a family farm. Looks like you’re on a ZTR machine; I get mine done on a medium-sized Kubota with a 6′ brush hog. It’s pasture, not lawn, but we don’t want the cows to get lost.
I’ve done it while listening to your narration of Coffee is not Forever.
45 acres, and I complain about 2.
Mowing is satisfying. The lawn looks so neat after it is done. When I first had a lawn as an adult, I hired a crew to mow it. Although they did a decent job, I wanted the lawn cut longer so that the grass would grow better. Although they said, “Si, senor,” they didn’t change what they were doing. I realized that they made their money by offering a standardized product to half the homes on the cul-de-sac. If they had to adjust their mower for every lawn, they wouldn’t make money.
I calculated that in one season I could recoup the cost of a push mower, so I bought one and started doing it myself. Then I found out that I actually enjoyed mowing. Not only did the grass look nice when it was cut, but also over the season it improved as I cut it longer. Then I noticed the spot where the grass had gotten weedy because it got sun all day and needed more water. So I made sure to water that spot more. I started to pay attention to my lawn.
It feels good to do something yourself and to do it well.
Kudos for a beautiful lawn at your arboretum!
So lovely, Doug. Thanks.
It’s a 48 inch Kubota zero turn. I call it my easy chair with blades.
Thank you for mentioning one of my favorite books. It helped me become a legitimate coffee snob. My favorite roaster just got a microlot of Geisha beans from Costa Rica and I have a bag on the way. Can’t wait.
I live on a 75×125 lot with 55% covered by roof or concrete. I still have too much to mow. A while ago I tried an alternative. I planted the front lawn in clover. It resulted in a beautiful green lawn with lots of blossoms. And, because it never exceeded our city’s 9 inch grass height limit, I didn’t have to mow it.
Passers-by loved the clover lawn. It sparked several of delightful front-porch conversations with folks strolling down the sidewalk.
All that changed one day. A “neighbor” a few houses spotted me working in the yard. He made a bee line to me and then told me how much he did not like my clover. A week later 95% of the lawn was dead. I suspect the clover got a free dose of broadleaf herbicide or maybe glyphosate.
Maybe he would prefer green concrete? Pitiful.