Lawn Mowing

[Taylor]

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Although it’s not quite summer, the grass is green and growing in Aomori.  How do people mow their lawns here?  I’ve seen people do it three ways.  People who have a large territory to cover seem to prefer riding lawn mowers.  I’ve also seen a couple people with a small amount of grass to trim use simple push mowers.

The most popular method, however, seems to be Japan’s version of the weed wacker.  Most weed wackers that I’ve used in the United States cut plants by whirling a hard plastic wire around in a circle at a high velocity.  There is also a safety guard preventing grass, twigs, and other debris from flying into your face.

All the weed wackers I’ve seen in Japan are basically buzzsaws on a stick.  There is a safety guard, but it’s much smaller and affixed halfway up the pole rather than directly atop the cutting mechanism.  Japan’s weed wacker is essentially a terrifying, circular metal blade at the end of a pole that loudly spins around with the push of a button.  It doesn’t look very safe.  Sometimes when I’m at my desk at work I can hear the metal screech loudly against the ground or a the edge of a building or sidewalk.  I know our grounds crew are trained professionals who know exactly what they’re doing, but that sound is still cringe-inducing and makes me nervous.

It’s also not uncommon for people to let the grass and other plants, flowers, and weeds grow tall before cutting them down.  Often the debris is left in the field (like in the picture above) rather than raked up, collected, and disposed.  I suspect all the caterpillars we’ve seen lately appreciate this.

Well, congratulations for making it through this post.  I know it’s not particularly illuminating or interesting, but we’re trying to update more regularly.  We had to start somewhere.

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