Aww, go ahead... it don't cost to drool. ;) http://tinyurl.com/2fjxph
Damn you, Sheldon! :-)
Back in the mid 70s, I had occasion to drive a half dozen 911s. I worked at
a store in Great Neck that did custom audio & alarm systems. One lawyer
liked out work so much, all his partners had to have the same systems. They
paid extra for us to drive our cars into Manhattan & park, and take their
Porsches out to Great Neck. What idiots, letting a couple of lunatics drive
The Midtown Tunnel looks really interesting at 90+ mph. Only got to do it
once, though. Too much traffic the other times.
The comments in the thread are interesting, particularly about the
size of typical lawns. I'm in So. Cal, I timed my lawn mowing one
time. From getting off the sofa to back on the sofa, five minutes. I
didn't edge that time.
I use a battery mower, really like it, I have a personal problem with
small gas engines, especially ones that don't start immediately. Just
got a battery string trimmer that I can edge with.
Now I need a battery operated grass puller to get the grass out of the
My best friend while growing up used that term for the resting furniture in
the living room "sofa". My family still calls it a couch.
If it only takes 5 minutes to mow, I'd wonder why even bother having a lawn.
I have only a 1/3 acre in total but a relatively large amount of green
space, as I'm the exception in this area of fairly new developments in
that less than half of my lot is taken up by the house itself! I use a
riding mower for most of it -- even in such a small area without the
riding mower I would not be able to keep it up at all. I use a
walk-behind for two steeply sloped areas in front of the house (thank
God those bits are small!). I don't worry about spraying and feeding, as
I mulch the clippings from mowing and have clover growing. The only
regular edging I do is along the sidewalks and curb. Those areas would
be overrun with bindweed if I didn't edge them and keep the vines and
runners cut back. Watering is done with hoses and portable sprinklers,
so there is no in-ground irrigation system to maintain. Hedges and beds
are managed with weed suppression and mulching, and only need edging
once or twice a year to subdue encroachment. It takes me about an hour a
week to keep the place looking nice. Routine mower maintenance runs me
about $100.00 annually, including pick up and return by the maintenance
guy (someone probably thinks this is too much, I think it's fine for a
couple of decade-old mowers -- one a rider). It would be much easier to
have someone else come and do it for me, but they would invariably kill
my clover, "feed the grass" with spray-on nonsense, over-mulch, rake up
clippings and waste them in a landfill somewhere, nick the bark on the
trees, raise the level of noise pollution with leaf blowers, overwater,
gouge my bank account and diminish the quality of my time outdoors.
My grandmother used to call the couch a Chesterfield, and the small
couch on the screen porch was a settee.
(those hills), but still there are lawn service companies that are
careful, concientiious, and reasonably priced. I originally tried a
few I wasn't happy with but then found one that I kept for 14 years:
Fabian Lawn Care & Garden Service. Four hard workers showed up, they
had top of the line commercial equipment, they worked their way up and
down the neighborhood streets all day every day doing about half the
houses on each block, They were in and out of each property in 20-30
minutes, and since every property was the same size with very few
differences in configuration they charged everyone exactly the same, a
smart move, prevented an aura of favoritism and jealousy. Each worker
did a different set of tasks, soon as the guy on the riding mower
moved to the next ouse the guy with the string trimmer moved right in,
etc. For 14 years I didn't need to own any lawn equipment, no
replacements, no service, no maintenence, no dangerous gas cans, no
labor... averaged $27.50 a month for 14 years. And Fabian did a lot
of freebies for his regular customers; he maintained my sprinkler
system for only the price of parts (most times there were none), over
the years he removed two huge trees and ground the stumps, he removed
about 40' of overgrown hedge, about 20 large bushes (more like trees),
cut down, hauled away, and ground down those stumps too. I had no
complaints in all that time, he never missed a week, even mowed in the
rain.. The only thing I paid extra for was chemicals, but was no more
than had I bought my own and again he did the labor, My lawn looked
as good as any in BH&G. There is no way anyone can take proper care
of a typical surburban sized lawn for less than $27.50/wk, just not
possible... not unless they do a hit and miss slop job. If someone
really enjoys doing their lawn, fine, but I don't want to hear how
they save money doing it all themselves, I just won't believe them.
There was a time I did my own lawn, didn't take me long to realize it
cost me money not to have a lawn service.
Btw, a $100 a year to service those two mowers with pick up and
delivery is a real bargain... and because they're properly serviced is
why those old machines lasted so long... and I bet they perform
flawlessly, start right up... and if ever there's a problem, since
you're a regular long time customer I bet they send someone right over
to check it out no charge.
It costs about $50 to properly service a push mower for a year, and it
takes a couple hours to do it right; needs to be cleaned underneath
(mower shop uses a high power washer - you can buy one, more money and
another machine to service), really should be power washed after each
use, or at least hand scraped, much less strain on a clean mower. The
mower shop pays much less for parts so they can make a profit: the
average blade is like $10, sometimes a bit more, you need a spark
plug, a fuel filter, a muffler, and motor oil... need to oil/grease
moving parts too. And some people ignore wobbly worn wheels but those
should be replaced. And it's not safe to use the same mower blade
more than a year (they warp and fatigue), besides while the old one is
taken off for sharpening may as well put on new, it's not worth saving
the $10 to sharpen an old blade. Self propelled and riding mowers
cost more to service and maintain. And with most people a mower
doesn't last more than a few years before it needs replacement,
especially not if the lawn is actually mowed regularly (mine was mowed
at least 32 times a season). And the typical do-it-yourself mower
monkeys shorten the mower's life even more... most start off all gung-
ho truly believing they will do all the service by the book, truth is
few ever read the book let alone ever even change the oil. Pennyaline
is wise to have the professionals do it.
I mow because I'm retired and have time, and I enjoy it, I find
driving a tractor very relaxing... and I knew exactly what I was
getting into with so much to care for, I didn't want to spend my
retirement sitting in a chair looking out a condo window.
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