Marcus Billings wrote:I look around and it's like I'm an alien on my own planet. People are burning millions of gallons of oil, using up precious water reserves, and using up what is arguably their most precious resource, time, just for an aesthetic that is very temporary!
Marcus Billings wrote: So my question is this: Why in the world do we still try to beat back nature and continue to mow? (I'm aware that the historical origin is most likely the kept areas around medieval castles)... If we did evolve on savanna with sprawling grass, why do we need it to be cut short? Is it a primordial fear that a dangerous animal could be lurking in the weeds? Is it simply because it looks good? Was I spending hours on a mower just because the end result looked "pretty" in the traditional since? Again, I almost can't remember why I did it other than "I was supposed to".
Marcus Billings wrote: What I'm addressing are those billions of acres that are being mowed once a week and are not being used for hay, mulch, or other bio-mass purpose.
David Livingston wrote:Why are we mowing
Because I get paid
Half rent for mowing plus I get all the mulch I can use
But I still feel these micro points are not the deciding factor for most of the acreage in the U.S. I would say the vast majority do not mow for any of the reasons listed in the replies with the exception of the psychological reasons Jarret mentioned. There are lawns everywhere! Down back country roads that no one sees but the owner, behind fences, and in millions of places that have nothing to do with the valid reasons stated in the previous posts. We seem to be a culture addicted to mowing. The amount of chemicals put on lawns is staggering! I just can't help but think that there's a better way.
Brandon McGinnity wrote:I agree with the OP. I remember doing a bicycle tour at around age 20, my first time on my own out in the country (being a suburbanite from Detroit), and of course on a bike you're so much more engaged with your surroundings, so I remember being struck by all the farmers (well, country folk, at least; a few may have been on real farms) out there, mowing lawns of an acre or two. Not brush hogging, just going around on their sit down mowers. What a ridiculous thing to do!
If it were just to keep the land clear, in case they wanted to farm it or something, fine, brush hog it once or twice a year to keep trees out. But this was northern Michigan, why keep the trees out? You wanted to live in the country, and the country there is woods! I never could see the point of wasting so much time and fuel (and money) doing that. Maybe a small place for kids to play, and to keep the area around the home clear for fire and, yeah, aesthetics. But no, I never understood it.
I once wrote an essay years ago about the insanity of lawns, which I can post if anyone is interested.
Jane Southall wrote: And though they still have some fleas, we certainly have no infestation. In the yard several hours a day and maybe one tick all day. I have wild trap crops, everywhere. This season is the best insect balance I have ever experienced, in my life.