Monday, March 3, 2008

Lawn mowers

I mowed the lawn on Friday afternoon. The weather was nice and I could see the lawn, so I gave it a shot. The lawn certainly wasn't long, but there was some logic in mowing my already short lawn. Sure, making the neighbors questions what the goofy family on the corner was doing partly drove my decision, but there was much more to it.

Last year we tried to plant a lawn in the front yard. The old lawn was 90% weeds and it was really ugly. We have some desire to resell the house, so we decided to redo the lawn to make it look better. I know that lawns aren't the most environmentally friendly use of land, but with the desire to resell our home, we did it anyway. But we decided to do it without chemicals. Did I mention that the previous lawn was almost entirely weeds?

So we rototilled the lawn and turned it all over into a big pile of dirt. In that pile of dirt you could see morning glory roots throughout, so I knew that if I planted my lawn in early spring, I would be giving the morning glory and the grass an equal start and the morning glory was sure to devastate the grass seed. So I wanted to figure out a way to kill the morning glory. I decided that morning glory needs light and water to survive and it will die when exposed to excessive heat. So I put a layer of black plastic over the front yard (yes, it looked as bad as it sounds). I figured I would just do this for a couple of weeks, but when it came time to take the plastic off, we were deep into summer on a lawn with a Southern exposure that would not be conducive to starting grass seed. I decided that fall would be better because morning glory is at the end of its growth cycle and I could give the grass a bit of a head start.

Last summer our home was known for the black plastic in the front yard and the sunflowers on the side. I thought for sure nothing could live through the drought and heat under the plastic, but the morning glory was ready to grow as soon as I removed the plastic. I planted seed, but it was quickly evident that it was going to lose out to the morning glory. So we went to the local park that was being torn out and we took some of the free sod from there. It was a late night, but I got a lot of the lawn done in the pitch black and my pregnant wife finished the next morning. As I look at it now, it is obvious that I laid the sod in the dark. By the end of last fall, there was morning glory starting to spring up through the sod.

That is why I mowed the lawn Friday. Morning glory season is still a ways off, but the grass is ready to grow. I have heard that mowing will stimulate growth, so I want to get that grass growing early in the season so that hopefully it will block out the morning glory (I doubt that it will, but I'm trying).

Another reason that I mowed on Friday is because I like my lawn mower. Last year we got a reel mower, and I love using it. Sure it takes longer and you often have to go over the lawn in a couple different directions, but I really enjoy using the new lawn mower. As an additional bonus, I can tell how the new lawn mower works and I can fix most any problem that will arise (except for laziness and lack of time). With our gas powered mower I hated the hassle of getting it started and following the smelly beast around the yard. I therefore mow more often with the new mower and enjoy it far more.

QUIZ: Tomorrow there will be the answer to a special quiz. The question is: What are the 10 biggest businesses in the world? I know that you know how to Google it and find the answers, but how well can you do without Google? (No, Google is not one of the top 10). Check and see tomorrow.


Laurel-Anne said...

10 biggest businesses? By that I assume you mean corporations?

I've got a few guesses, sans Google:
Exxon Mobile
General Electric
General Motors

Anonymous said...

I will guess without Google....Pharmaceutical, Dairy, Factory Farming ( meat), Fossil Fuel, oops am I talking business or industry ? Health care and keeping us eating so we get sick so we need drugs............FOLKS read The China Study by T. Colin Campbell !

Emily Allan Wood said...

I would like to add your blog to my Google reader, but it looks like I can only subscribe to the Comments. Can you see if this is a setting you inadvertently set in blogger?

I am sorry to hear you are still battling with the morning glory. Hmm. There must be some way to defeat it! I wish you luck.

P.S. I used to use a push mower to do my grandpa's lawn. I think its supposedly better for the grass than a gas mower. Its got a different chopping action or something like that. Go to it!

Emily Allan Wood said...

I found this on the web. I thought you might enjoy it.

***just come accross these posts since we have lots of morning glory in our garden here in south london. I love these flowers as they are a herb of peace and healing. They are a very potent plant with magical uses in combating nightmares and irrational fears etc. As far as I know they are too dangerous to apply internally and better used for folk magically remedities. I feel a strong connection with the leaves which can prehaps be pressed and made into wall paper.

The post about controlling this plant by clipping the leaves is most interesting. My feeling is that morning glory tends to become very dominant becasue it seeks to give away its leaves. If the gift of the leaves etc is accepted then the energy of the root is fulfilled and future growth kept to more reasonable proportions.

Morning glory gets out of control in environments where healing is really needed. Ripping up this plant only makes matters worse. If you seem to be in a bind, destroyiong that which seems to bind you obnly exascerbates the apparant problems. When morning glory is appreciated then "bindweed" is an opportunity not just a problem.

love from,