Before lawn care season begins for most of the United States is a good time to rethink your landscaping to make mowing easier. Especially if you had trouble mowing around plantings, or worse, mowed over low-growing plants because you couldn’t see them.
Think back on your mowing over the last year and identify any persistent problems. Were there areas where you couldn’t get your mower between two trees, and were forced to trim that spot by hand? Does your lawn have awkward low spots that were hard to mow? Did odd angles make certain spots difficult to move in and out of? If you answered yes to any of these questions, use these design tips to create a more ‘mower friendly’ yard.
Use borders to separate plantings and lawns. Choose landscape stone, pavers, edging, or wood depending on your style. Whatever you choose, a clear border will help you avoid mowing plants. They will also provide a clear transition between lawn and garden areas and give plantings more visual impact.
Center your lawn. If you keep plantings and shrubs on the perimeter of your lawn, you will eliminate obstacles to mowing. Keep edges straight for a more formal look, but use gentle curves for more casual landscaping. Straight lines and gentle curves will make your mowing easier; avoid creating tight angles.
Plant in groups. If you currently have several disconnected small beds or small shrubs, consider connecting them in a larger, mulched grouping. You’ll have fewer things to mow around, and your plantings will have more visual impact.
Use vertical space, as well as horizontal. Create raised planting areas or plant taller shrubs or ornamental trees. These will be easier to see and avoid while mowing while adding an additional element to your lawn.
Dig stepping stones in. Ideally, stepping stones or paver paths should be flush with the ground so you can mow over them without hitting the blades. If you have stepping stones that sit on top of your lawn, add digging them into the lawn to your early spring to-do lists.
Use planters and pots if you have a deck or patio. Choosing large containers rather than planting in the ground will let you skip having to mow around plants entirely. Container gardening has some definite benefits, too. For one, you can rearrange plant layout simply by moving the pots. letting you change how your yard looks. And in colder climates, pots let you grow more tropical plants, like citrus, fig and even banana trees, and move them indoors to overwinter.
If you have an uneven lawn with holes or low spots, plan now to fill them in. You could also consider smoothing out steep grades that make mowing difficult.
If you’d like fewer hassles when mowing, re-evaluating your landscaping is a good first step to make mowing easier. Minor adjustments to create beds, add borders, and even out tight angles can pay off with easier access for your mower, less hand trimming, and a yard with more curb appeal.