Making Mowing Easier

I’m looking out my window today at a lawn that is – hopefully – on the verge of a nice spring green-up, and I’m thinking about mowing. I know that in other parts of the world, there are people who enjoy mowing their lawn. In my world, mowing is a chore that offers quite pleasing results, but it’s not one of my favorite ways to spend my time.

I know it sounds crazy, but hauling around a big, noisy machine that could cut my foot off sort of interferes with my serenity.

So, as I look out the window, my mind is already starting to focus on what I can do this year to make mowing easier. I have two main rules for lawn mowing, and I keep them in mind every time I work on my landscape design:

  • If it’s hard to mow, then don’t grow grass. One side of my back yard slopes steeply down to a fence, and the other side slopes down to a drainage ditch. This year, I will stop wrestling the lawn mower on those slopes by enlarging my naturalized and mulched areas, in a nice pleasing curve that conveniently eliminates the need to mow the slopes. Oh, and that “pleasing curve” will also be one that the mower can easily turn.
  • If it won’t grow grass, then don’t grow grass. In the front corner, there’s an area that stubbornly refuses to grow grass – it’s dry and compacted, and the mower kicks up a storm of dust and gravel whenever I run over it. All along I’ve thought that would be a great place for a drought-tolerant flower garden, and this is the year to do it. Likewise, there is a deeply shaded strip between my house and the neighbors’ that seems inclined to grow only moss despite my elaborate attentions. You guessed it – I’m going to naturalize that, too, perhaps with a shady stepping-stone path inviting you to the nice, green back yard.

Of course, the motivation behind all this is that the easier – and safer – my lawn is to care for, the more diligently I will care for it, and the lovelier it will be. In the areas where grass DOES grow, I do everything I can to help it grow thick and strong, but I don’t spend a lot of time on losing battles. Come to think of it, this approach has led to some pretty awesome flower gardens, too!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here