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Changing mowing directions, how narrow, commercial, residential?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Hermanator, Jul 11, 2006.

  1. Hermanator

    Hermanator LawnSite Member
    Messages: 223

    Hey guys, I have a question for ya all.

    Residential Yards

    How narrow of a strip of grass is to narrow for you to change the mow directions to diagonal or back/fourth from the long way? Mostly wondering about the front yard or what can be seen from the street. Between drive way and neighbors yard? The little strip between side walk and street? The little 5 to 9 foot sections on the side of the house in the back yard I always mow and will always mow length ways, but we move the mower over a little each time to make sure not in the same wheel tracks.

    Commercial Lawns

    Now what about commercial types? Do you do these different? How about the HOA's along the road that is 12 to 20 foot wide, but 300 feet long? Or the 10' wide strip between the road and parking lot?


  2. smarino21

    smarino21 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 345

    the ressys are right liek you said, the commercial when its 10x300 cut it on a very long angle not totally vertical but a little bit horizontal. Thats what i have seen and done and works well for us.
  3. Mic_bug

    Mic_bug LawnSite Member
    from N.B. MI
    Messages: 201

    I mow in the same direction always....on those narrow strips that is
  4. Groomer

    Groomer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,676

    you puzzle me when you say you move the mower over a little each time on the narrow strips. To me if you cut a section the same way each time, you should always try to stay exactly over your same lines, better to have a stripe etched in stone than a bunch of confusing looking lines. I let common sense dictate how a section is cut, my guys are pretty good stripers, so I let them decide. We try to cut "full size sections" 4 different ways, straight, across, and left and right angles. On nice turf this gives a good diamond look.
  5. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    My people would not stand for staying in the exact same lines. When it gets wet around here, we would end up with a bunch of ruts. I vary my angles, I vary my swaths, It try to run over every blade of grass in the yard the same number of times over the years worth of mowing with my tires.
  6. Groomer

    Groomer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,676

    I don't "vary" my angles, I rotate them, consistantly. If I have a 3 stripe island, it gets cut in the most efficient manner, which means the same way ALL the time. I would never vary my swath, a 48 is a 48 should be used accordingly, as in the widest cut possible. Don't really have a problem with ruts, as I only use walkbehinds, and they cause very little lawn trauma.Only comment from clients is how great it looks.
  7. Hermanator

    Hermanator LawnSite Member
    Messages: 223

    i think your confusing what i'm asking exactly. yes on bigger areas we always rotate the striping or even do curves with drives or sidewalks from time to time to always make it look different and we get a lot of "hey, thats cool" what i'm talking about is those 6 to 10 foot wide areas that cannot be cut reasonably going different directions. do you still change directions or mow them the same each time? What we do currently, is cut the perimeter and then maybe move over half the cutting width one week, then 3/4's, then a full cut the third week etc. this moves the tire print in a different location each time.

    I would have to say that if you mow each time in the same wheel track, no matter what mower you use, you will get some rutting over time. We use almost 100% 21"s on our residentials and if they are watering the yard well, it will even rut with those. much more with a larger walk behind or ztr.
  8. Groomer

    Groomer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,676

    jeez, I must go back to lawnsman school, I've been cutting some of those islands the same way for 10 years.
  9. Commercial or residential, I cheat a little on both. If an area gets down where two passes will mow it, (one down and one back) it gets cut the long way.
  10. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    With 21's, go mow any way - it will work, On long narrow strips between buildings, and the property line - Mow any way you can get it done. thanks brad

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