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#659826 - Sun Oct 09 2011 01:15 PM Vacumming the lawn
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 11272
Loc: Western Canada
Well, I am very happy. The leaves on my lawn were deep and all crispy and dry, the kind that break up into dust when you try to rake. I'm having some back and leg issues, and was not looking forward to the days and days (I find I can only do it for fifteen minutes or so at a time, these days) I'd have to put into raking the lawn before the snow flies, which could be any time now.

Then I thought about my lawn mower (electric). I usually use the mulching option on it, where it chops up the grass very fine and deposits it back on the lawn, but I do have a catcher bag which attaches. I put the bag on, and started mowing - it worked beautifully. It was just like vacuuming the lawn and did at least as good a job as I would have with a rake. Got seven big bags of leaves and all done within about an hour and a half.

Maybe everyone else has been doing this for years, but this is the first time I thought of it, and couldn't be more pleased.

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#659843 - Sun Oct 09 2011 02:47 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: agony]
pyonir Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Sat Apr 25 2009
Posts: 726
Loc: Minnesota USA
They actually make specific machines for use as a "yard vacuum". My parents have one, a little bigger than the one linked below.

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_07177013000P?prdNo=1&i_cntr=1318193132832

But I agree with you, as long as you have a lawn mower with a vacuum, it's the same difference. :p

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#659865 - Sun Oct 09 2011 04:20 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: pyonir]
mehaul Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Wed Feb 03 2010
Posts: 4844
Loc: Florida USA
Put the flakey (he he he) powder into a pile or a composter bin to begin turning it into gardener's gold for yourself. Save the plastic bags. Use this same cut&vacuum method when cutting your grass during the summer and save that raking job. The mowers that mulch in place only succeed in returning pathogens to the lawn and continuing their harmful impact to the lawn's appearance. Only when a dry spell is expected should you use a mulch to shade the soil in the lawn. The grass clippings added to the leaf mulch/flakes, after decomposing, make a super top dressing for your yard in the spring. The composting will kill many of the harmful pathogens you'd vacuumed up. My pile used to harbor fireflies which were an added aesthetic value to the process.
When I did landscaping, we collected everything we cut, composted it, added some sand and loam then sold it back to our customers as top soil. Our lawns were envied.
We used a blower to amasss all the leaves into rows for easy raking. The output of your mower (the underside is vacuum) works as a blower too if you'd like to just move the leaves away.
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#660481 - Wed Oct 12 2011 10:52 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: mehaul]
romeomikegolf Offline

Administrator

Registered: Wed Apr 07 2004
Posts: 4875
Loc: Rothwell Northants England UK 
There is a thing called a Garden Blower. Virtually all of them turn in to a vacuum at the flick of a switch. They're much cheaper than the one linked to by pyonir. I won't link to any because they are all commercial sites, but just Google.
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#660588 - Wed Oct 12 2011 06:34 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: romeomikegolf]
agony Offline

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Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 11272
Loc: Western Canada
It's almost always dry enough here that the lawn needs the mulch, and the one good part of our winters is that hardly anything nasty survives. I used to compost all my leaves, but since the town started their own compost pile, I send mine there, now. I've got worms in a bin for all the household composting - banana peels and whatnot.

I've never really understood the point of leaf blowers - unless you also pick the leaves up, don't they just blow back the next time the wind comes up?

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#660626 - Wed Oct 12 2011 10:36 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: agony]
mehaul Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Wed Feb 03 2010
Posts: 4844
Loc: Florida USA
When cleaning out under shrubs which may have delicate bark and could be damaged by the tines of a rake, the blower is the perfect tool. But as with many perfect tools they get applied to the wrong job. I believe leaf blowers surpassed gas mowers as the most wasteful, carbon-footprint machines a couple of years ago and so many are seeking to curtail their use. They assail the beast by citing local noise statutes.
Chinch bugs, dollar spot and fusarium wilt overwinter very nicely in lawn thatch (mulch)


Edited by mehaul (Wed Oct 12 2011 10:38 PM)
_________________________
"...Tomorrow's come a long way to help you."
Tim Davis 'Your Saving Grace' Steve Miller Band (1969)
"...Yesterday's at least a mile back."
Dale Peters 'Dreaming in the Country' James Gang (1971)

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#664933 - Tue Nov 01 2011 09:50 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: mehaul]
Jakeroo Offline
Prolific

Registered: Sat Aug 30 2008
Posts: 1776
Loc: Alberta Canada
LOL Agony, I'm with you on the leaf blowers. I once watched a crew of three people, each sporting one of the devices, trying to get rid of a large quantity of leaves that had shown up for a fall convention in a parking lot. It was a very blustery day (apologies to Eeyore). They were actually attempting to push the bulk of the leaves in a direction that was AGAINST the wind (towards their truck where, presumably, the bags were). I realise that it's hard to find good help these days - and hey, they were getting paid by the hour so it probably worked out just fine for them - but SHEESH! : )

If one already has enough compost, the best solution is to install a gate in a section of your fence (in my case since the prevailing winds come from the NW, that would be the SE part) and let them all blow into your neighbour's yard. Solved lol.


Edited by Jakeroo (Tue Nov 01 2011 09:52 PM)
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#664955 - Wed Nov 02 2011 05:03 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: Jakeroo]
sue943 Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 19 1999
Posts: 35219
Loc: Jersey Channel Islands        
I thought for a moment that you had been taking a tip from Tellywellies, he took the vacuum cleaner to his lawn to suck up dandilion seeds! smile
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#664966 - Wed Nov 02 2011 06:54 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: agony]
lesley153 Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Fri Sep 07 2007
Posts: 724
Loc: Bedford England UK           
Originally Posted By: agony
I've never really understood the point of leaf blowers - unless you also pick the leaves up, don't they just blow back the next time the wind comes up?
My ex-neighbour had the solution to that - she blew them into my garden.

I couldn't understand why she bothered with a leaf-blower. My leaves banked themselves up neatly against the fence. It was only when they moved out, and my leaves stopped piling themselves up by the fence, that I twigged: they weren't my leaves at all!
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#665006 - Wed Nov 02 2011 11:03 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: lesley153]
Tizzabelle Offline
Prolific

Registered: Sun Jan 17 2010
Posts: 1986
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia         
A friend of mine lives next to an odd couple. You could cast them in a movie as the "weird neighbours everyone is mildly scared of". The husband (about 70) is a neat freak who complains about leaves from my friend's trees. It's a gum tree and they will drop leaves! One day my friend saw her neighbour vacuuming up the leaves... on his roof! He'd taken his regular household vacuum cleaner onto the roof and was up there cleaning up his roof. Anyone using a vacuum, leaf blower or other appliance on the ground, indoors or out, now seems completely sane to me!
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#665017 - Wed Nov 02 2011 12:24 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: Tizzabelle]
lesley153 Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Fri Sep 07 2007
Posts: 724
Loc: Bedford England UK           
My leaf-blowing neighbour spent half her waking moments shouting at her children and dog to get out of the way of the vacuum cleaner, and the other half cursing the tree for dropping leaves on her front garden, her house, her car. Nobody had the energy to tell her that that's what you get when you buy a house with a tree in the front garden. confused
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#665200 - Thu Nov 03 2011 04:06 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: lesley153]
auntie1 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Mon Dec 12 2005
Posts: 395
Loc: South Kingsville VIC Australia
I once had a workmate who (to my way of thinking) was obsessive about edging his lawn and clipping the hedges. He had the grace to look sheepish when he confessed to vacuuming up the little black insects which sat on his water-lily leaves.

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#665428 - Thu Nov 03 2011 05:31 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: auntie1]
MotherGoose Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Mon Apr 22 2002
Posts: 4179
Loc: Western Australia
Lesley's story reminds me of my ex-neighbour. When we moved in, she (I'll call her M) came over and said "Hi! I'm M and you are going to hate my black wattle". Her black wattle was located between our two houses and it used to drop an enormous amount of yellow fuzzy blossom all over my yard, my patio and my pool (I don't have lawn).

She was dead right about hating her wattle, however, wanting to have good relationships with my neighbours, I put up with it. I enquired, "How old is your wattle?" She admitted to planting it about 12 years ago so I thought "Oh good, wattles usually have a life span of about 8 to 15 years, so I should only have to put up with it for a few more years at the most".

Well, that wattle went on forever! Her yard was always pristine clean because the prevailing winds meant that the blossom was always dumped on my side of the fence.

Eventually, M moved out and L moved in. L said "I hate that black wattle; I'm going to get rid of it". "Yippee", I thought. Then L found found out how much it would cost to have a professional tree remover take it out and decided she could live with it.

Then L moved out and T moved in. T was a single mother with two children. "I hate that black wattle. I'm having it removed", she said. "Oh yeah, sure", I thought. "I'm stuck with that wattle forever once you find out how much it will cost to remove it". I thought she'd never be able to afford it, being a single mum. Next thing, it's GONE! Her dad came over and took it out.

I love my new neighbour. I no longer have to vacuum my yard, my patio and my pool. We have one of those blow-vacs too (as well as a pool-vac).
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#665432 - Thu Nov 03 2011 05:48 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: MotherGoose]
lesley153 Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Fri Sep 07 2007
Posts: 724
Loc: Bedford England UK           
I do like stories with happy endings. smile
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I appreciate people who are civil, whether they mean it or not. I think: Be civil. Do not cherish your opinion over my feelings. There's a vanity to candor that isn't really worth it. Be kind. ~ Richard Greenberg

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#665461 - Thu Nov 03 2011 08:14 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: lesley153]
Jakeroo Offline
Prolific

Registered: Sat Aug 30 2008
Posts: 1776
Loc: Alberta Canada
I do like neighbours that turn out to be good ones. I currently HAVE three good ones (after living more than 30 years on my current property with two really horrible ones). You really don't want to know the stories about those. Well maybe you do, but I can't tell it in less than 2,000 words : )
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As much as I love my friends, I won't jump off a bridge WITH them. Instead, I think it's in our mutual interest for one of us to try to catch the other when they fall.

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#666034 - Sat Nov 05 2011 07:24 PM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: Jakeroo]
MotherGoose Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Mon Apr 22 2002
Posts: 4179
Loc: Western Australia
"Well maybe you do, but I can't tell it in less than 2,000 words : "

Sounds like a good idea for a new thread - "Neighbours from hell" stories. smilee
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#666067 - Sun Nov 06 2011 12:29 AM Re: Vacumming the lawn [Re: MotherGoose]
ren33 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 10963
Loc: Fanling
  Hong Kong      
Go on then Mother Goose! Start one!
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