The Original And Best Lawn Mower On The Market
You can’t beat one of these when it comes to getting that perfect cut and keeping a healthy, natural lawn – imagine a grass-powered lawn mower with a fertilizer attachment.
Grasses co-evolved with the herbivores that ate them. Grasses grow from their bases, unlike most plants. A low growing point allows herbivores, such as bison, goats, zebras, or the now-extinct aurochs, to nibble their tops off while leaving them relatively unharmed.
Herbivores are so crucial for maintaining grasslands that if you remove them, you’re effectively removing the grass. In addition to providing fertilizer through their excrement, these animals also trim back small shrubs and prevent the prairies from turning into forests. Grasses left untrimmed can choke themselves out; herbivores ensure this doesn’t happen.
It’s strange to consider, but we’re mowing our lawns because our herbivores are missing. They’re gone (or not allowed), so we do it. The next time you cut the lawn, think of yourself as filling a missing ecological niche. You’re playing cow. Don’t forget to “fertilize”.
Without herbivores, your lawn wants to be a forest. So does your parking lot.
Herbivores On Lawn Care
One option for natural lawn care is to get an herbivore. If you play your cards right, you could end up with meat, milk, and leather. Another option is to get rid of the grass and plant something that doesn’t require weekly grazing. Plenty of beautiful perennials and shrubs are available (many of them edible). But if you want to play cow, here are a few lessons from our herbivore friends:
- Keep your grass on the long side. Longer grass is better equipped to photosynthesize and set down roots. Retaining more of its moisture, grass left on the long side will be (and look) much healthier.
- I suspect that manual push mowers might more accurately mimic the teeth of herbivores as they cut rather than tear off the tops of the grass at high speeds.
- Go bagless. Every pound of lawn clippings that is hauled away is a pound of nutrients being robbed from the soil. Leaving the clippings will keep the nutrients on-site, add organic matter to the soil, and help hold in water. The same goes for leaves. Herbivores return nutrients to the soil through their excrement, but you can avoid removing it in the first place by going bagless.