Mowing the Meadow


mowing the high meadow grasses

One of my favorite tools is our hand-pushed, mulching mower. As with all of my favorite tools, I like the physical activity and related mental state associated with using it as much if not more than the end result. Mowing the Meadow is a great excuse for taking a long walk and getting to know the contours of the land while performing routine maintenance- what’s growing where, gopher and insect activity, the condition of the soil.

Upon my return from installing our lenticular mural project in Oakland I was pleased to find the meadows about three feet high with a mix of fescue grasses and wild flowers, all still green but beginning to go to seed. I have a Briggs and Stratton mulching mower that chops the cuttings, returning them to the soil as added shade and nutrient-rich cover for the long dry summer to come. Eventually, we plan to have a goat or two do the mowing, and to cultivate at least one meadow with flowers and vegetables. Meanwhile, I’ll enjoy the chore as a welcome tonic to the headier tasks of proposal making, design and shopwork currently at our threshold.

Mowing also helps me to process recent events, which are all on the upswing this spring. Our lenticular mural project has been very well received upon completion earlier this week, making the local NBC News and the front page of the Oakland Tribune. I send deep thanks out to Dan Cohen and Jordan Pierce of Full Court Press, who facilitated public relations for the project, and to our friend Shawn Connally, managing editor of MAKE magazine, who recently posted a glowing profile of Wowhaus on the Craftzine blog.

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