Mow, Blow and Go – Gone?

My little beach town has outlawed the gas blowers that the gardeners use. The new law went into effect on March 1st, and clearly, my 98-year-old neighbor’s gardener didn’t get the memo. He was out in full noise-and-air-pollution force last week with his gas blower.  The law states that electric blowers and battery-operated blowers can still operate.

I had a massage two days ago and told my masseur about the new law. The first thing he said was, “Most gardeners will be hurt financially. They will have to buy new blowers with really long extension cords.”

I am torn. Yes, it will burden gardeners, but those stinky blowers do bug me.  Every other Tuesday, at 9:00 a.m., when I am having a massage, the gardeners for the development where my chiropractor office is come with their noisy machines. I am lying on the table, face down, trying to relax so that Curtis can work on my messed-up back and neck.  Like clockwork, a gardener comes up to the window of the room I’m in, blowing away the leaves and debris that have accumulated there.

Befor the pandemic mask rule, I could smell the gas emissions through the closed window.  Curtis comments, I comment, and then the blower man is gone to pollute annother area of the development.

You might wonder why I don’t change my appointment to another day of the week. Curtis is hard to get, and I am booked throughout the calendar year with him. I don’t want to mess around with that.

I don’t have a gardener at either house. It’s a lot of work for me, but it’s good exercise, and it makes me happy to work outside.  Also, the birds have hiding places when it rains when they find corners of piled-up leaves. 

At the beach, I let the pine needles pile up until summer. Then I have to rake them up in case of fire. But being two blocks from the ocean, it stays pretty damp, so I’m not too concerned.

I had a friend who used to trade using my house with doing yard work for me. The problem with that arrangement was that we don’t see eye to eye on how to do it.  She wants to weed-whack everything. My philosophy is old school. Sit down and pull the weeds by hand, thereby sparing the Boston ferns, lilies, and daffodils from getting whacked.

I have a rolling seat that a neighbor was giving away. It’s perfect for my sloping yard. I start at the front porch and roll my way down the sidewalk, pulling weeds on either side as I go.

You should see me, out there with my five-gallon orange bucket, pulling weeds and picking up pine cones and tree branches that blow down every time it rains. That’s what I get for buying a house with a 90-year-old Monterey pine tree in the front yard.  Someday I will measure the circumference of that tree. It’s got to be at least fifteen feet around.

The previous owners laid black weed-stopping plastic up to the trunk 15 years ago. I just discovered last year that some of the tree roots were growing in circles when I cut away the plastic from the base of the tree.

I hope the huge tree doesn’t fall on my house someday, or at least, if it does, that I’m not home at the time.

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