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Lawn Care: Specialist Tools for the Elderly or Wheelchair Bound

By: Chris Hogan MSc - Updated: 23 Mar 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Lawn Grass Mower Rotary Robot Cylinder

Taking care of a lawn is something of a burden for fit able-bodied people, after all they have to drag the mower out once or even twice a week sometimes, in the summer. But for people in wheelchairs or otherwise less able to move around, lawn care can be difficult and time-consuming, not to mention dangerous. Fortunately there are products that can help people of all abilities enjoy a lush lawn.

Hover Mowers

For people who are able to walk, even if it's with difficulty, there are a number of lawn mowers that can make the job easier. It's important to consider the weight of the mower when it's being moved to and from its storage.

There are lightweight electric mowers which are easy for people to get in and out of sheds as well as walk around the lawn. There is also one that is designed to be used with only one hand and also a cordless mower so there's no cable to trip over or cut through.

Cylinder Mowers

Cylinder mowers aren't completely left out. You can of course get petrol powered mowers which are self propelled but they are very heavy to manoeuvre when the engine isn’t running and difficult to turn in a tight spot when it is. But there are electric cylinder mowers that have driven wheels. They have a speed control so that you can set a comfortable pace and they aren't as heavy as petrol equivalents.

Edging and Trimming

For edging and tidying lawns there are products to help avoiding bending or having to kneel. Very lightweight telescopic handled lawn shears are widely available and one-handed versions can also be found. The latter often have rotating heads so that the shears can cut vertically as well as horizontally.

For those in wheelchairs there are battery operated shears, often with a wheel so that they can be rolled along rather than having to be lifted. Another neat gadget is a tray that clips on to ordinary lawn edging shears. The cuttings can then be lifted over to a bucket or sack and tipped in in one motion without having to bend.

There are also lightweight electric strimmers, either with cords or battery operated. There are some that are some small enough to be operated in one hand at ground level, although of course people will need to be able to get down to ground level and back up again in order to be able to use them.

Consider a Robot to Help Out

Finally, for those with the money to spend, there are now a number of different mowing robots on the market. These look like ordinary rotary mowers with no handle. They detect sensors placed around the edge of the lawn and drive themselves around cutting the grass. They are all mulching mowers, that is to say that they cut the grass into tiny blades and use the force of the air current under the hood of the mower to force these tiny blades back into the soil.

This acts as mulch, protecting the roots of the grass from the sun and holding water in to make the lawn more drought resistant. It all sounds perfect, so the only catch is that they cost about ten times the amount of an ordinary rotary mower. Still, if time is money, and you have the cash, a robot mower might be a worthwhile investment.

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