EDITOR’S NOTE: EACH TUESDAY MY GREEN SIDE BRINGS SIMPLE TIPS FOR GREEN LIVING TO THE CHRISTOPHER GABRIEL PROGRAM. WE ALSO HIGHLIGHT A FAVORITE GREEN SITE EACH WEEK. YOU CAN STREAM THE SEGMENT AT APPROXIMATELY 1220PM (CENTRAL) EVERY TUESDAY AT WDAY.COM OR, IF YOU’RE IN NORTH DAKOTA OR WESTERN MINNESOTA, LISTEN ON YOUR RADIO AT AM970 WDAY.
Grasscycling is recycling grass clippings by leaving them on your lawn instead of collecting them for disposal. Grasscycling is a practice that can help produce a healthy lawn while at the same time benefit you, your community and the environment.
To grasscycle properly:
- Cut your grass when it’s dry.
- Cut your grass regularly. A good rule is to cut no more than one-third of the grass height at any one mowing. Cutting off more than one-third at a time can stop roots from growing and require frequent watering during dry summers to keep the grass alive. In addition, the one-third rule produces smaller clippings that disappear quickly by filtering down to the soil surface.
- Cut your grass with a sharp blade. Sharp blades cut the grass cleanly and that helps ensure rapid healing and regrowth. Dull blades tear and bruise the grass. The wounded grass becomes weakened and is less able to prevent invading weeds and recover from disease.
Grasscycling improves lawn quality when grass clippings are allowed to decay naturally on the lawn.
- They are returning nitrogen and nutrients to your soil.
- Since the clippings are 80 – 85 percent water, they act as a water-saving mulch.
- They encourage natural soil aeration by earthworms.
- Your mowing time is reduced because there’s no nee to bag your clippings.
- 30% of water used on the East Coast goes to watering lawns; 60% on the West Coast.
- 18% of municipal solid waste is composed of yard waste.
- The average suburban lawn received 10 times as much chemical pesticide per acre as farmland.
- Over 70 million tons of fertilizers and pesticides are applied to residential lawns and gardens annually. (Read Healthy lawns, healthy lungs)
- Per hour of operation, a gas lawn mower emits 10-12 times as much hydrocarbon as a typical auto. A weedeater emits 21 times more and a leaf blower 34 times more.
- Where pesticides are used, 60 – 90% of earthworms are killed. Earthworms are important for soil health not to mention the harm it causes people and pollinators.
Thanks to Kathryn Grace for the idea for this week’s Green Tip.
My Green Side’s web pick of the week:
The Eartheasy.com Blog
This blog is full of great information about everything from Smart Seafood Choices to Tips for Tornado Preparedness. And Eartheasy.com has informative guides about all things Green Living. Eartheasy.com is a family business committed to bringing us practical products and information for sustainable living.