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Hey all,

So I have recently moved into a new house and I'm trying to figure out what to do about the yard. It takes anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes to cut the front with a 17 inch gas-powered push mower (that's 7 or 8 years old) and 45 minutes to an hour to cut the back. It seems like a long time to cut it all but I'd rather not get a rider if I can swing it. I'm not even sure a rider would work in the yard that I've got, given some of the slopes and other problems that exist.

The yard has a host of problems that make cutting it difficult (and sometimes dangerous) and I'm not sure how to best tackle these issues. Since this is my first house and thus my first lawn, I was hoping some of you guys could offer some advice for dealing with the issues that I've got.

Some problems with the yard include:

  • 2 trees in the front yard with root systems that are very near the surface of the yard. It's actually difficult to push the mower over the roots without the blade hitting (and sparking off of) them.
  • Some of these roots actually protrude above the lawn's surface and I'm required to mow around them.
  • My front and back yard have patches where no grass grows but weeds and other mini shrubs mixed in with loose dirt that need to be cut down.
  • Both front and back have sections of particularly thick grass or mounds of dirt that my mower ends up cutting the top off of when I push it over.
  • Excessive debris in the yard, sometimes hidden, that goes into my mower and comes out at super-high-ricochet-brain-implanting death speeds.

So I'm trying to figure out what kind of mower I need to deal with all of these problems at once as well as figuring out what tricks of the trade will work towards making all of this easier and cutting down on my mowing time. And this is probably just half of the problems I've got with it. Any advice for a landscaping newbie would be most appreciated.
 

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Hello, Frerico and welcome to MLMF!

New homes are wonderful, aren't they :D?

Please, I'm not being funny as this question is often not immediately considered when you start talking about the proper landscape mower...so, here it is: Have you looked around the neighborhood and watched what others are using?

There is much to be said about a good walk behind mower. They are awesome, typically trouble free with moderate maintenance and, well almost portable. But, they aren't worth beans when you have serious landscape problems that need to be addressed.

Thoughts on a rider. A good commercial or professional homeowner grade with a pressurized oil system (for the hills and slopes), something capable of pulling a small utility trailer for transplanting soil, cleaning dead fall and, ultimately, pulling a small box blade, tiller and lawn roller. If your budget allows and you want to save time and fix the existing problems in your front and back yard, I don't know how you can get by without one...;)

Mark
 

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My ideal thoughts are that you use a weed eater (trimmer) to cut around the bushes and trees and use the push mower to cut the rest but if you want to kill time you have to cut. Get a cheap small rider and trim up areas.

You could also put pine straw or bark around the trees and roots and bushes to stop the grass and weeds from growing to close.
 
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