If you’re in the habit of mowing your lawn at least once a week, you may want to consider mowing less after knowing what we know.
We get it—there’s nothing as satisfying as looking out at a freshly mowed lawn on a summer’s day. Mowing your lawn means keeping those weeds and wildflowers tame around your landscape, which probably seems like a problem that needs to be dealt with frequently. However, you may want to consider letting those wildflowers and weeds grow just a bit for the bees.
Yes, bees. By mowing your lawn every week you are leaving no life for bees to feed on. Now maybe this doesn’t seem like a huge problem, because who would want bees on their lawn? They are even more annoying than those weeds and wildflowers, so mowing your lawn consistently seems like the ultimate solution. However, if you keep a garden (or care about the growth of vegetables and fruit), you need to feed the bees.
Bees are natural pollinators, which help the growth of your plants. By having plants to feed on, they can cross-pollinate and help to naturally fertilize your plants. This is especially crucial for the growth of vegetables and fruit. According to an article published by the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in March of 2011, cross-pollination helps at least 30 percent of the world’s crops to grow, and 90 percent of wild plants. Without bees, these plants wouldn’t thrive or could even die off completely.
In 2007, beekeepers were seeing cases of colony collapse disorder (CCD) where honeybees were leaving their colonies for good. Typically worker bees don’t leave their colonies unless a queen leaves the hive and brings along bees with her. The fact that bees are leaving can happen for numerous reasons, but not having enough food or water is certainly one of them.
Now maybe you hate bees and don’t really care about them thriving at all, but if you care about your garden, you would consider cutting that lawn at least every other week so the bees have something to feed on (and use to pollinate your precious plants).
Just make sure to pick up the dog poop before mowing your lawn, because it can be a serious threat to the health of your yard.
This story originally appeared in the Family Handyman.