Mowing or Meadows?

My regular readers know that I am always mowing in the summer. I have just over 3 acres and I also my neighbour’s track. So what to do?

I am not the only one. I was talking with Diane Griffin last week about Stratford and Cotton Park – masses of mowing there. There are parks all over PEI and Mowing seems to be the “National Sport” for most Islanders.

What I have tried this year is to set apart a large block of my normal mow as a “Meadow”

Here is the boundary with the normally mowed part – very long right now because of the rain – I will be mowing up to the Island standard tonight when it is dryer.

Every week, the flowers shift as a rotation of plants do their thing. It looks much nicer than this in the reality – I am a terrible photographer.

Through the meadow I have cut a rambling path that connects the oak trees that we have planted there. This rambling path creates a loose structure in the meadow and I think makes it more attractive.

It’s a bit like getting used to grass fed beef or real chickens that have been allowed to run around. Over the summer my taste and texture expectations for “real” meat have been adjusting towards a rougher, tougher but more interesting taste. So has my eye with the meadow. It’s a rougher view but much more interesting. I am asking how much more I get allow return to meadow next year?

The challenge is of course that I have been brought up having neat lawns. In England they are even neater than here. All my habits are invested in neat and tidy. I think I am not alone in this passion for neat lawns. I bet that most Islanders can imagine no other alternative.

But the money is compelling.

I am spending about $60 a month on gas for the mower – $360 for the season at current prices. My mower is a high end Deere and I use a LawnBoy Push mow for detail. $10,000 in capital expenditure. That’s a lot to keep the place looking “Tidy”. If gas prices double – then my direct costs approach $800 – that’s a lot of money.

What are we all going to do with all our lawns?

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4 responses to “Mowing or Meadows?

  1. When we last had 10 acres of land about 3/4 was woods. We mowed the lawn that was next to the house and had a wildflower meadow. The high weeds in the woods were brush hogged about once a year so we could see the deer better. If you have the room save fuel and your time by having some meadow. It will attract a bigger variety of birds and wildlife. We bought a couple of different shaker cans of mixed wildflower seeds to get something blooming most all the time in Michigan.

  2. meadows are better than neat rows of short cropped grass. Unless you need the yard for something.

    Fruit trees and veggies – even better!

    Tom

  3. Another question Rob. Just who are you mowing FOR?

    As for what will we do with our lawns in future; we will grow stuff on them. Stuff to eat, stuff to burn in the winter to keep warm. And those of us lucky enough to have the right climate, will grow oil bearing crops.

    A few reprobates will probably grow a little dope as well because the cops wont be able to afford to fly over or drive past quite so often.

  4. Yes today I mow for a habitual and culturally accepted or even culturally demanded norm.

    How to break out of this early? Hard.

    No doubt we will end up growing food. In places like Ukraine that is the norm – no one has lawns!

    But how to start – my meadow is in a Meadow like place. So what about my driveway and the front of the house?

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