No mow or mow?


A few thoughts from Philippa Reece

This month’s blog is on grass!!!!!

Been a hot topic for a few years now with the divided view of mow / no mow. Traditional expectations/ nature’s needs.
Over the last 3 years we have been on a variety of journeys with our grass.
Starting with not mowing it soooooo low that it just dies over the hot dry summers here and creates a brown dust bowl. Not only providing not natural resource for nature but also lacking in appeal for us for picnicking, football, filtration from cars at low levels also.
 Too run alongside this we have also brought back the age old tradition of edging….. yes edging. Nice neat edges that in some instances took off half a meter of grass to find beautiful traditional edging from tales gone by in parks.
 We now have lush green parks with the start of an edging revolution in bringing back quality standards.
 We have also been working in creating areas that are not mown at all. Watching over a 2 year period now the natural seed back in areas start to flourish has been amazing. Creating areas that a packed with natural wildflowers for this region. A buzz of life of crickets, sky larks singing way above as they return to nest here, bee’s flitting from flower to flower and the return of orchids. So many of them as well with their heads bobbing around in the wind. The mass of colour, texture and movements as the wind blows is a sight to behold.
 We have created walkways through areas on desire lines to mix the use of us and nature in these areas. Defining them by how we cut the grass and once again creating depth, texture and patterns as we go.
Areas that have not had so much wildlife within them, we have helped along the way with a seasons worth of bulbs with one species after the other coming into flower. Diversity of species. Beauty. Colour. Food for nature. Height. Depth. Texture.
 It raises the question though,  how have we got so far away from standards? From nature? From combined use? From respecting needs of nature and needs of us?