Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Green Acres Lawn Maintenance

It seems I have become a true urbanite now that I have a lush green lawn that is the source of much envy in our community. Having become something of an expert, allow me to offer a few friendly words of advice as to your lawn’s care and maintenance.

First, lawn-type grass is made up of various forms of annoying plants with names like Festus, Kentucky Banjo, Bendover, Herniation, and Dandy Lion. These can be grown from seed, or arrive ready-made on trucks. How they get the grass to grow in nice, neat rolls like that is still being researched by scientists.

Anyway – before planting your rolls of grass you must first hire illegal immigrants to rake rocks into your soil. Another important preparation is to make sure the soil is sloped such that water will pool in small ponds throughout the lawn area during heavy rain storms, light rain storms, and intense sunshine. This is important for your mosquito breeding program which we’ll discuss in a future column.

Now I seem to be getting ahead of myself a little here, since I forgot to mention that grass needs a great deal of water in order to grow weeds properly. This water is provided by a system known as irritation. Irritation consists of expensive computers mounted to the outside of your home, the directions for which are on decals that burn off in the first rays of sunshine they are exposed to.

Anyway – this computer thing is what tells the water where to go, through mysterious white tubes that grow around the outside of your lawn. These tubes occasionally sprout heads, which have been known to periodically have water dribble out of them.

So – your grass is growing! Great! Now what?

Well, ongoing maintenance means controlling weeds, fungus, algae, coral, mushrooms, sea cucumbers, bugs and dog poop. Most professionals employ a snobby ‘green’ approach, using organic fertilizers, ‘natural’ pest controls and no doubt feeding their lawns granola.

I also utilize a ‘green’ approach, by carefully reading the ‘green’ printing on the side of my ‘green’ Roundup ‘Kills Everything but Concrete’ barrel, and spraying it liberally.

You’ll also need to trim the grass in some fashion. Most people call this ‘mowing’ their lawn, ‘mowing’ being defined as ‘The act of creating large volumes of noise, smoke and vibration while wearing headphones that make you look like a dork’.

In fact, lawn mowing is the art of shaving the tops off sprinkler heads with fine precision.

The mysterious machinery used for mowing requires fuel, so remember to keep your siphon hose handy for use with neighbourhood vehicles.

To mow, simply walk around with the noisy machine until either your grass is shorter, or you’ve lopped off several toes or, in my case, both.

Next, you’ll need a trimmer – or ‘Weed Whacker’ in professional parlance. Using a trimmer is an excellent method of embedding fine gravel and plant material in your shins.

It is called a trimmer since it is so good at ‘trimming’ the bark off of your new, expensive small ‘trees’. This device also has a satisfyingly loud gasoline engine, and a pull rope which is used for shoulder and arm exercise. This rope is commonly called the ‘DamnStupidThing’ for some reason, and serves no purpose other than strengthening the musculature of the upper body. Starting the machine should be left strictly to professionals or passing, manly neighbours.

A clean, healthy lawn is a great way to show off your home. As with all gardening, patience is a virtue, and one doesn’t necessarily have to resort to late night sprinkling of rock salt on the neighbours’ lawns to make yours look that much better.

Or so my probation officer tells me.

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