Author Topic: Robot mowers  (Read 467 times)

Beardy

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Robot mowers
« on: 09 June, 2024, 03:06:54 pm »
Is anyone using a robotic lawnmower?

I’m currently fighting with the remains of no-mow May which was completely pointless given how few actual flowers grew. As mowing 700 sq meters of ‘lawn’ is no small undertaking I'm thinking of taking greater control over the majority of it before next year and I’m considering a robotic lawn mower.

I’m therefore asking the collective for any experiences you might have with mechanical mowing machines beyond this that require pushing.
For every complex problem in the world, there is a simple and easily understood solution that’s wrong.

Mrs Pingu

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Re: Robot mowers
« Reply #1 on: 09 June, 2024, 04:09:44 pm »
From what I've read recently, most lawns require a bit more effort than just no mow for a month to get anything else to grow. We're doing alright with clover taking over, and a huge thistle, but there's not a lot else apart from creeping buttercup, despite me planting some yarrow plugs last year (they've disappeared), but I think we're hindered with being on heavy clay which is saturated with water til late spring.

Anyway, as in the time honoured forum tradition I haven't actually answered your question :) but if you want some wild bits now is the time to start planning them for next year....
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Re: Robot mowers
« Reply #2 on: 09 June, 2024, 04:26:56 pm »
Friends have one and love it. (It is called Gary.)

It comes out by itself and mows day and night and parks itself on the charger when it needs to.
Buried cables define the area to be mown, and if it detects an obstacle it does a three-point shuffle and sets off again.
It gives a very close-cropped lawn - they use it for croquet...
They have a very flat area of grass, but if it does hit a bump/slope it tends to fall over and lie on it's back, beeping pitifully.

We don't have one - our "grass" is bumpy rough meadow and anyway I think it would get stolen.
We have a smelly old ride-on mower to hack paths through the rough.

There is also concern about injury to wildlife such as hedgehogs.
From "Which"
"The zero emissions of a robot mower are attractive from an environmentally conscious point of view, but some studies have suggested that they can have an adverse effect on the ecosystems present in your garden.  With the lawn always cut short, the grass will essentially become a monoculture. The flowers and shoots that insects rely on for food won’t be able to grow, and pollination will not occur. Perhaps more viscerally, there are also reports of hedgehogs and other small nocturnal animals being injured by robot mowers running at night.
To address these issues, we suggest that owners set the robot mower's blades on their highest setting so flowering plants, such as daisies, can still bloom and avoid using robot mowers at night. You could also establish part of your garden as an area in which wildflowers are allowed to grow and laying the boundary wire accordingly, to help insect populations and allow pollination."



Beardy

  • Shedist
Re: Robot mowers
« Reply #3 on: 09 June, 2024, 05:24:51 pm »
I’m not intending to create a single _lawn_, but rather to mow enough of it regularly to appease Dr Beardy and artfully neglect a portion for wildlife purposes. We’re fortunate enough to have a large enough garden to make this practical.
For every complex problem in the world, there is a simple and easily understood solution that’s wrong.