This summer, consider greening not just your grass but your approach to mowing your lawn. A nicely-kept lawn is a hallmark of pride whether you’ve got acres of land or a small front yard, but keeping your grass freshly mowed can contribute to air pollution. Whether you’re interested in large, zero-turn mowers that cover the homestead or simple push mowers for urban yards, there are ways to green your approach to grass cutting.
Manual (reel) mowers
Manual mowers are the simplest to use and also the most green. Modeled on the scythe, manual mowers require no gas or fuel and use no resources but your own muscles. They may seem old fashioned, but they have become more popular in recent years as people become more eco-conscious.
Manual mowers work best for small yards — it simply would not be feasible to hand-mow an acre — but they may have a place on big estates, too: They’re perfect for touching up hillsides that are too steep for riding mowers.
Electric and rechargeable mowers
Because these mowers use electricity, they usually — although not always — require a power cord. You’ll find both push and riding electric mowers, which makes this category suited to small, medium and large yards. While electric mowers use more natural resources than manual mowers, they are certainly more environmentally friendly than gas-powered lawnmowers. How green they are depends on how energy efficient the plant that provides your power is; some power suppliers are more green than others.
Zero turn and riding electric mowers can cut an average of half an acre before needing a battery charge. If you prefer a model without a cord, shop for rechargeable mowers. These require a plug for battery charge but may be operated without a cord. Purely electric models require a connection during use. As such, they have a more limited range of motion than their rechargeable counterparts.
Traditional gasoline mowers
Gas-guzzling traditional mowers are responsible for seven percent of all summer emissions. They use gasoline, either diesel or unleaded, to power an engine. These are the least green of all options because they use fossil fuels, so are not recommended for the environmentally conscious.
Relatively new to the lawn-mowing game, biodiesel mowers resemble traditional mowers, but with one green upgrade: The ability to run on biofuels. Because these are newer than other types of lawnmowers, there may be fewer to choose from in the store. Still, they offer significantly less environmental impact than their traditional alternatives and may be used on large and small yards alike.
Switching to an environmentally friendly lawnmower will save you money that you presently spend on fuel. Depending on the type of lawnmower you need, you may even spend less by purchasing a green model than you would by purchasing a new traditional mower. So this summer, commit to going green and lessening your environmental impact and your utility expenses by buying a greener lawmmower.