The Thing: retro reel lawn mowers take Toronto
What is it about old-man accoutrements that hipsters can’t get enough of? After co-opting just about everything vintage (handlebar moustaches, white undershirts, Polaroid cameras, fanny packs), grass-loving homeowners from Leslieville to Parkdale are grooming their green space with no-gas, non-electric push mowers—the lawn care equivalent of a straight-razor shave. Eco-warriors use them to reduce their carbon footprint, and row house dwellers—still perplexed over where to stash their XXL blue bins—love the space economy of a lawn mower only slightly larger than a pogo stick. The city kick-started the comeback in 2009, when it began issuing $10 hardware store coupons to anyone willing to retire a pollution-spewing double-motor gas model. The trend is also good news for Sunday morning sleeper-inners: no motor means the only thing waking you up will be the smell of fresh-cut grass. $109. Lee Valley Tools, 590 King St. W., 416-366-5959
2 thoughts on “The Thing: retro reel lawn mowers take Toronto”
there’s no “comeback” or hipster co-opting involved here. the fact is these mowers have never gone away, they’ve always been the most practical option for miniscule downtown lawns. maybe the author is just noticing it more now that “hipsters” are moving on to home ownership and maintaining properties.
If you get a better quality push reel mower, one with “touchless blades” like a NaturCut, it is less of a work-out than a power mower. It is not uncommon for people to mow acre plus sized lots with ease using a good motorless mower.
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