Everyone knows that the more products you sell, the more money you make. So, the last thing you want to be selling is a product that only needs buying once.
However, for ordinary gardeners, happy to follow trends set by the manufacturers, this is leading to unnecessary inefficiencies and expense. If these are not exposed and challenged, those same gardeners may be turned off lawns – to the detriment of themselves and of the wider environment.
As Chairman of the Lawn Association, I spend huge amounts of time and energy promoting sustainable lawns and lawn care. And it is a really simple concept – really healthy lawns that can be maintained economically and easily. This is the type that most gardeners in the UK want – but it does NOT generate the biggest profits for the lawn care industry.
Two of the biggest profit-earning consumables for the industry are dwarf ryegrass and multi-purpose feed-weed-moss products. But these are guaranteed to make lawn care more time-consuming and definitely more expensive, great for profits – but BAD for gardeners.
Dwarf Ryegrass is not a native UK grass. It has its place, to be sure, but not in the average domestic lawn and certainly not as a later addition to an established lawn. Why? That’s simple.
Ryegrass does not blend with existing native grasses – different colour, faster growing rate – and it needs more maintenance, in particular more mowing. Worst of all, as it doesn’t spread like our native bents and fescues, you are forever filling in gaps and thin patches – or even replacing the entire lawn every few years. And, of course, that’s what makes it such a profitable product to sell.
Multi-use products that claim to feed while killing weeds and moss are very poor value indeed to the average gardener. And any that claim to kill moss are simply lying to you – you cannot kill moss; you can only reduce and control it.
This is lawn care’s biggest myth, but we do believe what companies claim don’t we.Trying to do three completely different things in a single operation and in one fixed dosage is also, highly inefficient. You are compromised on the best procedure for each individual task and you can’t adjust the dosage of individual components, and so you get compromised outcomes. And so you more than likely have to do it again, and again – more cost for you, more profit for them.
These products are also past their time. For example, the best fertiliser today is made from recycled food waste and treats both the grass and the soil. And being a dedicated product with only one job to do, you can use it at the optimum time for feeding, not as dictated by the state of your weeds and moss. It works faster, better and works out far cheaper.
So, as with any purchase, when you buy your lawn products, research and choose only what is right for you and your lawn. Even better, learn about sustainable lawn care and discover just how easy and effective your lawn work can be!
By David Hedges Gower, Chairman of the Lawn Association
Our core mission at the Lawn Association is to make accurate lawn care information readily available via our website and through our Free Membership Scheme for gardening enthusiasts.
Go to the @LawnAssociation Facebook page to join the Lawn Enthusiasts Group, and get free association membership via the website, www.lawnassociation.org.uk
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