After a swift uneventful mowing chore my front yard landscaping was looking good. So I sat back in my lawn chair, cold beer in hand and admired my newly mowed lawn. There is nothing more sweeter than the smell of a freshly mowed lawn.
At that moment my front yard landscaping glow was interrupted by my neighbor, Bob. He came over for a beer, borrow my mower and to vent about his wife. Usually Bob just staggers over for a beer…. and wife belittling.
“You know how sarcastic my wife can be,” he began. “Well yesterday I came home from work to find Helen in the front yard cutting the lawn with mustache scissors. She was trying to make a point.”
“Mustache scissors?” I foolishly had to ask.
“Those tiny little scissors,” Bob continued. “So what I did was go into the house and got a basting brush, came out and gave it to her.”
“Whats this for?” she asked. So I told her, “For sweeping the sidewalk when you are done,” Bob concluded chuckling into his beer at his own wit. I shook my head in disbelief as chuckling Bob walked away with my mower and over my new front yard landscaping yet.
Front Yard Landscaping History:
Alone, sitting in my lawn chair admiring my front yard I started thinking about this landscaping phenomenon and how did it all begin. It ends up that front yard landscaping has been around since the late Middle Ages.
This crazy fad started with a rich English nobleman probably gone away from his castle on a nice Sunday drive in his horse and buggy and came across a beautiful lush, green, grazing meadow.
“How can I obtain this as my front yard?” the nobleman thought. Thinking further of grass seeds or digging up this pasture and delivering it to his estate. Were not totally sure which method he chose but apparently some sheep herder got rich and moved to a little castle of his own away from his worthless piece of sandy land. Not realizing it, this rich English nobleman just developed the first front yard landscaping company.
After some time of trial and error the lawn had fully grown in. A problem arose that even with the grazing sheep, the grass was still growing out of control. So this nobleman brought in rabbits, horses and goats. The lawn was trimmed nicely and fertilized well, but now his front yard was looking like a farm instead of the lush green lea he was hoping for.
Distraught about the lawn-farm situation the nobleman one day was looking out at his wheat field and noticed his workers reaping his crop with scythes. Scythes have been around since 500BC. Those clever Romans. Suddenly a candle lit above his head and he called the workers over. That’s around when the scythe was introduced for lawn care.
The front yard lawn care providers had to be good with lots of finesse in using a scythe. The grass blades had to be at a strict two inch length. How else are the rich going to entertain their guests with lawn bowling(1190), tennis(1500) and croquet(1856).
The Push Reel Mower:
The push reel mower came to the rescue from the tedious scythe in 1830. This mower was invented by Edwin Beard Budding, an English engineer who in a fabric factory saw a machine that could be adapted for cutting grass. The environmentally friendly push reel mower is still highly used and sold in present day.
Unsuccessfully many inventors experimented with rotary mowers in the late 1920s and early 1930s. This front yard landscaping tool was not commercially produced until 1952 where finally a small and powerful enough mowing product was found.
Sitting back in my lawn chair I started thinking on how much I love the sweet smell of a freshly cut grass and of putting a water fountain in the middle of my front yard. One with a cherub urinating into the pool. Also thinking of when I get to tell Bob that this is the way you do proper front yard landscaping.