Should you mow or whipper snip first? We’ll get to that soon, I promise!
One of life’s great pleasures is getting away from the daily grind and mowing the lawn. It’s the closest thing I get to a Zen state and gives me a valuable break from my two energetic boys. The best part? The wife thinks I hate doing it, and always treats me like I’ve taken one for the team when I’ve been out mowing.
Should I mow my own lawn?
Yes! You should mow your own lawn instead of paying someone else.
Those familiar with this page will know I’m a firm believer in doing things yourself. And taking care of your lawns is no different. When you regularly mow your own lawn, you’ll get to know your property better than a professional company will; especially if it’s one that has a large crew. You will get a better feel for any slops or holes in your lawn, what height is best for your grass, and where the difficult patches are. You’ll get the added benefit of a mental break from work or family commitments, it gives you some great exercise, it’s much cheaper in the long run, and you learn a valuable skill!
Should you mow or whipper snip first?
Snip, mow, blow!
This mantra has served me well for so many years. For a professional finish on your lawn, simply use the whipper snipper first, followed by your lawn mower, and finish with the leaf blower if necessary.
What’s a Whipper Snipper?
Line trimmer, string trimmer, whipper snipper, weed wacker, and weed eater, are all different names for the same thing. I’ve always run with the name whipper snipper and it’s the most fun to say! So, for the purpose of this article, we’ll refer to them as whipper snippers.
How to use a whipper snipper.
I always use the whipper snipper first because it means less changing between tools! Begin by cutting any borders of your lawn with the string slightly tilted towards the border. This will get rid of the annoyingly long grass and weeds that tend to climb up your fences and borders. Remembering that your mower can’t get all the way to the border, this first cut means you can take it easier with your lawn mower.
You should also consider any tight corners in your lawn, as your mower will find it difficult to get to these places. Turn your snipper so that line is horizontal to the grass, and carefully cut these areas to the required height. It’s a good idea to make this area quite generous, as it’s easy to overestimate the places your mower can fit into.
You should be careful with this cut, as it is easy to rip up your lawn! But don’t stress too much about matching the height perfectly with the mower. You can always come back and adjust it later! Most people get a feel for their lawn heights after only one or two goes at this.
Should I use an edger on my lawn?
An edger is unnecessary if you have a whipper snipper, line trimmer, or string trimmer. You can easily use any of these tools instead of purchasing an edger.
Find any edges that you want to make especially neat and straight. These will mostly be those places around footpaths and gardens, with plenty of clearance to work with. Twist the head of your snipper so that the line is vertical and hold your trigger hand against your hip. Keeping the snipper as steady as possible, walk along the edges and cut down into the grass.
The trick with using your snipper as an edger is to keep your arms locked in a steady position and move your whole body. If you try to control the movement of the snipper with your hands and arms, you’ll find it grips onto all sorts of things! Not only is this super frustrating, but your edges will look like my toddler has attacked it with a knife!
This cut is my favorite part of lawn mowing, but it takes a little practice. Your edges will look pretty bad after the first few goes, but once you get the hang of it, your lawn will look super professional.
Finally, have a look around the lawn for any tall weeds or thicker patches of grass and smash them with the snipper. Tackling these things first with the snipper makes your job of mowing much easier, with a more attractive end result.
How to Mow a Lawn
Next comes the mowing. I start by doing a border around the lawn, catching any grass thrown about by the snipper. This also gives me some space to turn the mower in the next bit. After creating a border, I turn the mower and mow up and down the lawn, following my wheel tracks so that it stays straight.
If I’ve explained that horribly, check out this picture from Nutrilawn!
Should I use a leaf blower after mowing?
For a perfect finish, grab your leaf blower and get rid of any fine grass trimmings. For a quieter option, you can use an outdoor broom to eliminate grass clippings from the road or footpaths. Personally, I rarely feel the need to crack out the blower as using the snip/ mow technique gets rid of most of the grass leftovers.
Lawn inspection- best done with beer
The final step of mowing your lawn is to spend a few minutes inspecting said lawn. This is best done in a comfy chair in the shade with an ice-cold beverage. After years of experience, the most effective way to complete the lawn inspection is with your favorite beer. During the inspection, you may also compliment your lawn on how good it is looking.
This phase helps improve your relationship with your lawn, brings your Zen state to a close, and allows you to seamlessly transition back to the chaos.
So, should you mow or whipper snip first?
Snip, mow, blow, beer!
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