Thursday 23 May 2024

No Mow May


    While this is pretty late in the month to be mentioning this, Greenpeace Canada is urging people not to mow their lawns in May, in order to allow for food for the pollinators.  Not mowing is really a hard sell, because it seems most people treasure sterile-looking, mono-cultured, low cut lawns.  Such lawns are totally useless and even harmful to the world.  They offer nothing, except some misguided pleasure to those who think that is how things should be.

    Every summer I blog about my mowing practices.  I do mow my diverse lawn, but while I am pushing the lawnmower, if I come upon a bunch of wildflowers, I mow around it so that they have time to bloom and reseed.  This of course, makes my lawn look patchy and raggedy to those “lawn-heads” who like everything to look uniform, but I am happy to have the diversity which helps the wild plants and pollinators who are finding our changing environment increasingly more difficult to survive in.

    I do tolerate a lot of blooming dandelions in my lawn.  The bees and other animals love them.  I have even seen Kona chomping on them.  Once they are done blooming, I mow them down.  

    There are a lot of advantages to not mowing so often:  Plant diversity, food for pollinators, money saved on gasoline, and more free time.  Like I said, I will mow them later in the season, while mowing around the other plant species whose lifecycles have them bloom later. 

    Not mowing, does cause a problem now that I am hyper-aware of forest fires.  Tall plants are more prone to catching and quickly spreading fire than do low growing plants, so I have to keep that in mind and make sure I am not causing problems that way.

    Living in a rural area means I have a fairly large lawn, and I tend to mow sections of it at different times, so if I mow an area with a lot of flowering plants, I make sure there is another area with other plants that the pollinators go to and feed on.

    The photos show one area of my lawn that I have purposely not mowed.  The dandelions and forget-me-nots are attracting bees and small pollinators, and beside that, I think it is a lot more interesting to look at that a uniform area of grass, and it is a lot prettier too.

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