Not Quite The Lawnmower Man

Private Property South Africa
Shaun Wewege

One of the benefits of living in a complex is that many have garden services that take care of many of the chores you don’t enjoy. Some love gardening, I view it in the same way I view paperwork. I will admit to some double standards though. I love the idea of having a lush green garden with a perfectly manicured lawn and brightly coloured flowers. It’s just that I don’t want to be the one who actually does all the work. I’m also the kind of person who kills plants without trying and rides over the hosepipe with a lawn mower, so I know that my garden will only have aesthetic appeal if I don’t touch it.

Over the festive season our garden service took a break and I was left with two choices – either let the grass grow so long that we would lose pets in it; or mow the lawn. After much deliberation I decided to get a lawn mower. And a case of beer to make the task seem less like a chore.

If you are thinking of getting new lawn mower for your home you are left with a number of choices. We’ve outlined a handful.

1. The Push Reel Mower. I’m fairly certain that when the first cave man needed to mow his lawn after the ice age, a push mower would have been the one he used. Simple in design, it needs no electricity and is one of the cheapest types of mower you may find in the market. Modern push mowers are lighter than those of previous generations and if you have a small garden they are worth looking at. They are also silent, something that is important if you live in close proximity to other people and don’t want to be known as the complex noisemaker. If you have electrocuted yourself after riding over your lawn mower’s power cable, then a push mower is the one for you.

2. The Petrol Mower. Cordless mowing is, for gardeners at any rate, something of a blessing. There is no need to run lengthy cables to a power source or quit mowing when there is a power failure. You literally fill up the tank and go. Petrol mowers often tend to have a bit more power, making grass cutting easier. The downside is that they are rather noisy, petrol is costly and your engine may need occasional maintenance. If you have a large garden and it is a struggle to connect to a power source, then this is the type of mower for you.

3. The Electric Mower. They are lightweight, quieter than their petrol counterparts and require little maintenance. Generally speaking, they are also inexpensive in comparison to other mowers. The main disadvantage is that a power cable makes grass cutting a bit tricky, particularly if you have an odd shaped garden, have many trees that you need to manoeuvre between, or don’t have an easily accessible power source for your garden.

4. Robotic Lawn Mower. As the name suggests, the robotic mower cuts grass while you sit and drink beer. You’ll first need to set up a border wire around the lawn that defines the area to be mowed, but after that, this rechargeable gadget set about it’s task needing almost no help from humans. Some of the top end models have rain sensors, are self-docking and can be pre-programmed with a timer. They don’t, unfortunately, fetch beers out the fridge but it’s a small price to pay for such convenience.


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