Chickens in the Road ForumA A A
March 11, 2009
Two summers ago I couldn't get my self-propelled, mulching mower started and decided to get a new one. I gave the old one (2 yrs. old) to my grandson. Turned out I wasn't pushing the priming button before starting, but I let him keep it because he needed one. Then my neighbor took pity on me and mowed for me. That fall I went to Sears to get another mower and WOW, they had one with a key start function. It has a little battery and you just keep it charged and turn the key. I got the biggest model, brought it home, and stored it until the following summer. I brought the battery pack inside for the winter and, very carefuly, put it away where I knew I could find it when summer came. You know, that phantom place in your house where you put things where you know you can find them when you need them.... I'm still looking... I can use the mower with the pull string, but I'm getting older and my strength isn't what it used to be. I need to find that dang battery!
Anyway, Suzanne, check out Sears for a key start, self-propelled, mulching lawn mower. And I'm sure other manufacturers make them too. As for weed eaters, I can't get the gas-powered one started (Echo from Southern States makes really good ones) with the string pull, so I got a little Black and Decker (from Wal-Mart) that runs on a battery. It came with two batteries and each will run for about 20 min. I also fashioned a shoulder strap using a strap from a duffel bag. It works great for the little bit of weedeating that I do. Good luck and let us know what you get.
November 30, 2011
March 31, 2012
Mowing is my time to relax n smell the fresh grass. We mow about three acres with two lawn tractors. I would mow it all if hubby would let me, but he enjoys it as much as I do. He has shown me how to service it and take the decks on n off. This year I'm going to try to sharpen blades. Its not hard to learn if you really want to feel independent. I have problems gettin up sometimes n have arthritis in my hands but I enjoy working outside. My weedeater is a small gas powered one. Yes I learned how to keep it running. My biggest problem when I started to weedeat was to fit the handle n strap for me. I'm short. So with all you have done this will be a piece of cake or pie. Which ever you like. Just get out there n enjoy. Good luck.
January 31, 2009
Sure do! In fact I just mowed today, the second time already this year! It takes me about two hours to mow around the house areas and another hour to mow the drive and at the old mobile. I have a "real" John Deere with the really small turning radius, cruise control (not useful), and a Cup Holder. Tomorrow I will rake up the dry grass and use it as weed blocking mulch in a raised vegetable bed. I usually do the weed eating at least once a year. This year I am voting for the goats to do some of the work.
SandyC in WV
Farmess, Cross Stitcher, Traveler, Geekish
May 6, 2010
When I was a kid, that was my job. I would mow the front and back yards. My dad would have to start the mower for me because I was about the size of a pencil and weighed about the same. When I got married and we had our own house, I would mow occasionally, if hubby couldn't get to it. I did have a heck of a time getting it started, but I was determined not to let the mower beat me. I would used the weed eater if needed. I could get it done, but it wasn't pretty.
February 22, 2010
January 25, 2012
February 22, 2012
I mow. I love to mow. I love to mow so much that I try to beat my son out to the job, for which he gets paid. There are things I love about mowing. I love being outdoors, a nice clean yard, dreaming about all the flowers, plants or shrubs I want to put in my yard. I love to see the birds waiting for me to get done so they can get a good meal of fresh bugs right after I mow. I like the fact that I can combine exercise with a task that needs to be done. We have house on three lots, so it takes me a good two hours with a walk-behind mower. We have an old Lawn Boy mulch mower that you can also bag if you want the clippings for something else. It's old and temperamental, but once I learned the finer points of how it liked to be treated, I don't have too many problems with it. On the other hand, I hate to do the trimming, so I got very proficient in getting very close to things, so I don't have to do much of that. I'll pay my son for the trimming.
February 15, 2011
I am proud to be old enough mow, finally. Had to be over 60 to be permitted to mow, LOL.
We had a nice rider mower, and my youngest brother was doing the mowing since he lived with us temporarily. He mowed down a baby magnolia tree, a climbing rose, any limb that would go under the tractor and finally ran into a tree so hard he bent the bumper into a v shape.
I was so mad. Nobody could placate me. The grass was getting so tall, I could not stand it.
I went down to Sears and got a 54" cut rider mower with a key starter. When it arrived, brother said, "Thanks for the new mower, sis, that old one was no good." (It was only two years old.) I actually yelled at him, which I had never done in my life, and ordered him off of MY mower.
So then I had to actually learn to mow. Had to be humiliated by dh running along beside me giving me directions!!! That was 2009, and I mow two acres, look closely at the flower beds, look at any other yard work that needs to be planned, enjoy the breeze, fill it with gas when it needs it, talk other people into changing the oil, and enjoy mowing very much. Mulcing blades avoid any raking.
The mower that ran into the tree is still sitting on the carport, and I have no idea if there is anything wrong with it or not. And I don't care.
February 15, 2011
Suzanne, I just read the original post! Sorry to be off a little in my reply. Yes, I was a little afraid of my mower, but I figured that I would get over that with use, and so will you. I would just put put along at first, it was laughable. DH would yell, "Go faster, go faster!"
My new toy is a chainsaw with a 10" blade! It looks like a kid's toy, but it sure helped spruce up the place. Now, I have had it four months, and looked at it for four months, and finally got brave enough to actually use it yesterday. It is battery powered and Black and Decker. I used the eye protection and it was a good thing, because at end of day, my clothes and hat were stiff with sawdust. The only thing I did wrong was overfill the chamber that holds bar oil, and that spilled on the battery, but it had no affect on anything when I cleaned it up.
Yesterday I pruned 3 young pecan trees, 3 catalpha trees, one pear, some vastly overgrown shrubbery that has hibiscus type flowers on it, and cut down to the dirt some weed trees. The hardest part was dragging branches on a tarp to the burn pile, and I did not finish that task. Today, my hands and shoulders are too tired to move, but it certainly was a good day.
I don't know why the tiny chainsaw was so intimidating to me, but I finally got past that, and I am sure you can get past the tractor fear... I also use a Worx Lithium battery powered weedeater, since it cuts very well, you are not dragging a cord, and I don't have to worry about dripping gas catching something on fire when it is dry. Also, two batteries keep you going because one can be charging while you use the other one in the weedeater. I think it weighs 8 pounds. String is easy to change, too, just pop a new line holder in and discard the old one.
July 29, 2009
Perfect timing! I just came in the house from mowing. I will say, I don't LOVE mowing like some folks here. But I don't mind it, either. I have an electric mower (not battery-needs an extension cord), and I LOVE it. Nothing to maintain really, and no fussing. It turns on when I grab the handle, and turns off when I let it go. I got mine for cheap at a pawn shop, I highly recommend doing that for a lot of your tools, if you don't mind used. My mower even came with a 1 yr warranty from the pawn shop. I need to get an electric weedwacker for the edges, too.
Anyway, as to mowing my own yard vs paying someone, I've done both. I've only got so much cash, and I'd rather use it to pay someone to clean my house than to mow my yard.
Wearing cowboy boots does not make one an agriculturist….Having at least 3 varieties of poop on them does.
May 31, 2010
I supply the mowing equipment, my downstairs neighbor (DSN) supplies the 'man'power. The side yard is flat but stone and broken glass still hide there from the years it was a vacant city lot. Mow in real shoes and long pants (not flipflops and shorts) the mower can kick up a lot of shrapnel. (I'm the designated 'ambulance' driver to the e-room for stitches.) DSN is a fiend when it comes to HIS grass. Very exacting.
The electric mower took more time than it was worth...what with having to work around the cord. It also limited the directions in which he could mow-some directions had a higher probability of cutting the cord took more tossing-cord-around time. Current mower is gas, loud, but easy to start. Hints: never tip the mower over to check if there's too much grass gunk on the blades. Tipping it can cause operating fluids to migrate to places they don't belong. (ummm He never thought I would be dumb enough to do that, so he never warned me. Another reason I don't do mowing.) If I remember right, the current mower uses an an oil/gas mixture, the weedwacker uses straight gas....or maybe the other way around. Either way, be sure to mark a designated gas container for each. He also prefers an old style manual push-type mower for the tiny plot in front of the building. Cuts down on shrapnel injury & preparation time. Above all, keep the blades sharp!
Save the Earth. It's the only planet with chocolate.
December 31, 2011
This mowing depends on how much you have to mow. A lot: you'll need a rider mower, not so much or doing odd small areas, a self propelled walk behind mower is good. If you do not like pulling a rope to start one, get an electric start one.
Get it serviced every spring, with new spark plug and get the blade sharpened too.
I do not mind mowing with the self propelled mower. I do not drive so hate the rider but most ladies like them. Before you buy any mower, make sure that you can start it before you buy it. That is what I did.
ALSO: if you hate using a weed eater, use 4 month Round up around trees, around buildings. It costs some but saves much time! Love that stuff.
Best of luck!
December 28, 2011
When I was a kid, the mower was a way to make money. I hated it- the gas powered, pullstring nonsense that left me crying with frustration before my dad would relent and come out and start it for me- so that then I could be frustrated with the heavy pushing up the hill in back, the awful screams of the mower when you hit the roots or a rock the wrong way, the general griminess of the job, the motor that would go off if you let go of the lever (which meant another round of Kat vs the Pullstring) and the loud, stinky motor.
Fast-forward to living on our dream-farm, in the Tennessee mountains. My husband had a little ride-on John Deere lawn tractor, which started with a key and had a couple levers to make things start mowing and to lift the blade. He was the lawn guy in the family, but he has terrible allergies and would be out there mowing with a mask on. Driving the tractor actually looked like it might be kind of fun. Yes, our yard had some hills (it was the mountains after all) but it was only a little over an acre, and he didn't always have time to do it on a schedule I would have liked. I thought to myself, "I could do this."
So I tried it. He gave me a lot of tips, like to always approach any sort of hill straight on, and either mow up or down it, not across (where you could tip over). He showed me how to "walk" the yard first to check the places where a branch might be down or there might be some residual wetness (read: damp hole to get the mower stuck in) to make things tough. I learned to move the lawn furniture and hammock before I got on the mower. I learned to check the gas and fill it. I learned how to do light maintenance on it.
And I loved it! Driving the little tractor thing was fun. I felt a bit like I was driving a bumper car. But I was outside! In the sun! The chickens were terrified of the evil dragon (Help! Run away! Here it comes again!) but also knew in their lore that Good Bugs follow the Evil Dragon, so bustled around me as I mowed, scattering as I'd roar up behind them again. Aside from the chicken panic, it was peaceful. I wore ear protection, and I was in my own cocoon with my thoughts. It became a time to just enjoy being outside, looking at how everything was growing, thinking about what needed to be pruned or planted. A couple hours of peace- no phone, no demands, just me and myself. And oh my, it looked so nice when I got done!
Now, I'd have a very different tale to tell about the weedeater. I hated that heavy, messy, loud, gas powered thing so much I refused to weedeat and instead got very good at mowing quite close to most things so the yard needed very little weedeating. In fact, I got an old- fashioned rotary push mower (the mechanical kind, not powered by anything except ME) and used that for under the low trees instead of a weedwhacker, just so I wouldn't have the noise and bother of that awkward machine.
Now we live back in town. That old-fashioned rotary push mower? It's now my primary mower. With only a tiny yard front and back (which is getting smaller with every raised bed I install) it's all I need, even though one neighbor has a John Deere tractor BIGGER than the one I had on the farm, and the other has a little electric push mower he keeps offering to loan me. I keep telling him I love my little mower- that I chose it for both environmental reasons and for health reasons. My arms are a bit sore after mowing, but it's a good sore. And that rattle-rattle is a sound I've come to associate with a little peace and quiet- just me and the mower, walking up and down the yard- no toddlers, no begging cats, just lots of peace. Rattle rattle.
March 3, 2010
A rotary push mower (as mentioned above...powered by you) is actually the best choice for your lawn. Instead of ripping the crass blades and damaging them, it cuts them cleanly. This will keep your lawn much healthier, not to mention that it is environmentally friendly and you don't have to worry about fuel, getting your toes in the blades, etc. We used to tell our customers about the benefits of these mowers when I worked at a plant nursery. It would be my mower of choice.
Also, I have heard that baby doll sheep can keep a place mowed well. They supposedly respect a simple portable fence. Since you have many animals already and are familiar with sheep, would this be an option for you? It would make it quite easy to mow things around your place. Here is what I am talking about: http://www.busterhollow.com/about.html
As for the weed wacker, I would agree that you need eye protection (or a helmet with some), ear plugs, gloves and heavy pants to use these. You need to protect yourself. These things can be dangerous. My husband uses one and takes all precautions that are necessary.
I mowed almost non-stop one summer season. I am sure that I mowed every second day. I had no life. I was tired. BUT I also lost a lot of weight. I don't mind mowing except for the fact that I need to mow around all kinds of kids toys and things. If it was just straight mowing, I enjoy that. When I need to go around many things...I don't. I only use the push mower. My husband likes the ride on the best.
September 28, 2010
I mow because I have to. I have had 2 husbands. Both have passed away now. I HATE mowing. Growing up my brothers or dad did the mowing. I, being the oldest was helping my mother with the cooking. After I married my husband mowed. Then eventually my 3 sons mowed. Husband number 1 died. I mowed about a year then met another nice guy and remarried. He did my mowing on the farm. 3 1/2 years later he died of cancer. Now I am back to mowing. I am trying really hard to find someone to hire. I am 66 years old now and I also have back issues. I am putting my farm acerage up for sale this summer. I have moved into an apartment in town where I am not responsible for mowing. I always think the lawn looks nice when it is freshly mowed.
June 9, 2011
My mom was always the one to mow. No one else was allowed because we wouldn't take the time to DO IT RIGHT. We had always live in a neighborhood with decent sized yards (nothing like a farm!), and my mom would would trim around the flower beds and fences with scissors. My mom never worked outside the house, so she had a little more time on her hands than I do now, so I will let my teenage daughter mow (even if she misses a couple spots and won't do diagonal lines). But, I still trim around the flower beds with scissors. My husband will edge the sidewalks and go around the big rocks with a weedwhacker, but that thing terrifies me and I think it has uneven, crappy results. He says I'm crazy for kneeling all around the yard to trim and sometimes getting blisters. I don't care, when I'm done I love to turn the sprinkler on, sit in the shade, have an icy drink and look at the beautiful yard!!
November 4, 2010
We have a 10 acre farm (we only mow about 4 acres). I use a riding lawn mower and mow the flat parts. My husband mows the hard stuff with his big tractor and mower. I love to mow. When I am mowing I think of NOTHING besides mowing. All the bills and concerns of daily life just fade away and I think only of mowing. Shall I mow in circles or back and forth? I can mow for several hours as long as I have gas in the mower. It just looks so nice and neat when you are finished mowing. If I could come to WV and mow for you, I would. But, it's a "fer piece" from Kansas. Enjoy your mowing.
March 3, 2010
October 30, 2010
Hi All.....Here is another woman that mows! I only have to mow about 1 acre minus the house and garden. I love it! I actually worked on a sod farm and would mow 20 acre fields. Takes about 3-4 hours. Boy did I learn a lot! Very peaceful .....nobody bothers you. It can be a dangerous job if you do not know the field...especially after a rain. My next door neighbor also still mows her lawn when her daughters can't catch her.....she is 95! When we moved into this house about 23 years ago, all three of neighbors had the same riding mower. We were always saying we were going to have our own race down the lanes!
I'd also like to mention our house is built on a dairy farm and sits on a aquafer. In the spring we usually have to cut it every other day, so it's a good thing I don't mind doing it otherwise I may never see my husband. Does not slow down growing until it heats up here, if it doesn't we cut a lot! With the price of gas going up I joke with everyone, I pay almost as much to mow my lawn as to drive my car.........lol.
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