Lawn Academy

All About Gardeners

Lawn gardens and trends

Lawns Matter!

  • 24 million homes in the UK have a garden
  • We spend £80 billion a year in gardening
  • BUT…75% of people don't ever feed their lawn

Lawns: Britain's greatest contribution to landscaping

Lawns are very much part of UK and ROI: They have shaped the way we live, even in urban areas, with common spaces like city parks, recreational spaces and those for sports.

Lawns

The first Lawns were used in communal areas - Having a managed grass space dates from the early 16th century. In medieval times, communal areas were used for livestock grazing. During this period, lawns were used as a defence method around fortress and castles, to easily see strangers approaching.

They became a sign of wealth among aristocracy - It was labour intensive to keep, and having a lawn showed the owner could afford to keep land not being used for food/building purposes.

After the invention of the lawnmower in 1830 and the Victorian obsession for sport, lawns began to be used as playing fields (football, bowls & tennis) to mitigate dust and serve as a cushion for players.

What lawns do for us today? They enhance our quality of life, wherever you live this green carpet is perfect for sport, recreational purpose, attracting wildlife or just for aesthetic reasons.

Gardening Trends

Extension of yourself - The garden is an extension of your home, a second living room that reflects your personality. It’s where outdoor living & entertainment happens. It also reflects a way of living, especially if you pursue a healthy lifestyle, when you eat & drink your produce.

Gardening trends

Green living - Technology and consumer developments in lawncare have resulted in more sustainable and eco-friendly products (safe for pets and children). Water saving initiatives. more efficient lawnmowers and even solar lights are also part of green living.

Portable gardens - Renting is on the rise and new properties are getting smaller. For this reason many people are expected to look for alternative ways to enjoy the benefits of gardening without the need for vast amounts of land. Container plants, hanging baskets, gives the freedom to “own” a garden on the move or re decorate as they please. Yet the lawn is still the centre piece and this has to be created or enhanced as you move from property to property.

The lawn gardener: from Maintainer to Committed

Minimum Mike

Who is Mike - Mike has a real make do and mend attitude. He is a busy person, probably with a partner and/or children. He doesn't have the time for anything complex. Simple and straightforward is what he's looking for: low maintenance, labour saving, quick and easy. He might think his lawn is far from ideal, but he has other priorities in life. He is willing to do some lawncare when he has no other option.

Attitude – Mike have GOT to do the Lawn. He doesn't have a lawn routine or plan to treat the lawn; it is an ad hoc task that he commits as little time to as he can.

Minimum Mike

Mike undertakes - Mowing, watering and maybe, just maybe some weeding. Sometimes he doesn't even bother cutting weeds, as they blend with the grass anyway. He might do some patching if they are a big trouble.

Mike's Shed

What equipment does Mike have – In Mike's shed is entertainment equipment: outdoor sports/games, paddling pool, BBQ equipment and bikes for the children.

Lawn mower: Not Mike's friend and he has no regular schedule. It’s probably a Flymo type or one that was good value/ best offer when he needed to buy one. He has never serviced it and probably never cleans it when it goes back in the shed.

Mike's Shed

Mike's experience when cutting the grass is as follows: He lets the grass grow too long so the lawnmower struggles. The clippings get stuck and the mower fills up too quickly→ Vicious circle adding frustration. We will not even start mentioning the extension lead fights! Watering equipment: a standard hose and maybe a sprinkler (if their children use this in summer)

What Mike wears – Nothing special, just normal clothes; or scruffs.

Mike's Garden

They see his garden as a play room. Children are prioritized, so the lawn suffers climbing frames and trampolines. Bedding plants are destroyed by football or other activities.

Mike's Garden

Mike's first spring job is to get the toys out of the shed. He largely resents time spent gardening and his enjoyment is the completion and satisfaction of ending the task. In a nutshell the emotion he has around lawncare is control.

Discovery Don / Donna

Who is Don/Donna – In this group we can identify two types of gardeners:

  1. People that are in a journey, they are in the discovery phase. They might have seen a shiny example - a friend or a neighbour’s lawn and want to have a lush green grass as well. They are looking to learn about lawns and solving their problems. Having gardening success in other areas fuels them to try new tasks.
  2. Gardeners that just know a little bit more (because of seeing/ learned from someone else) but they are happy to stay with that knowledge. They have a routine and there are happy with the results they have. They want the perfect balance of a both functional & good looking garden.
Discovery Don & Donna

Attitude – Discovery Don/Donna WANTS to do the Lawn. They feel on the cusp of confidence and we need to support them to succeed. They know they need to invest more time on it, but also seeking the reward from this. They realise that they will need to work on the lawn with some sort of schedule, not just when the fancy it. Some of them make longer term plans (seasonal care).

Tasks they undertake - They mow their lawn regularly (schedule), they clean and take care of the lawnmower. Some part of this group edge their lawn. They have done some patching on worn areas and use some treatment (weed killing, feeding). The frequency of this tasks depends in their success with the product chosen.

Don & Donna's Shed

What equipment they have:

  • Lawn mower: Probably already bought their second lawnmower. One that fits their needs (cordless, or with some edging feature)
  • Lawn Trimmer: Some part of the group bought this but still figuring out on how to use it.
  • Watering equipment: They already bought a better nozzle/ spray gun for their hose. They also might invested in hose trolley/reel
  • Lawn Treatment: Probably have lawncare product on their shed. They don’t use it regularly
Don's Shed

What Don/Donna wears – Maybe all the gear and no idea, but certainly a great pair of gardening gloves- combining form and function – look nice and do the job.

Don & Donna's Garden

They see their garden as their living room, an extension of their home. A room for relaxing and also for entertaining guests.

Don's Garden

Fundamentally they need to increase their confidence/ not their frustration with products that pay back their invested time.

Expert Ernest

Who is Ernest – Ernest is a real lawn lover & advocate. These type of gardeners have an emotional connection with lawn tasks and enjoy working outdoors (i.e. can’t wait for the first cut of the year!). They know the lawn calendar inside-out and are in constant search for new information. The lawn is a real reflection of “who” they are. They feel a deep sense of pride and accomplishment when they look at their lawn. The lawn is the centre piece of the garden, their pride and joy.

Expert Ernest

Attitude – OF COURSE I DO the Lawn. These lawn folks have a structured approach to the task. They feel deeply committed and the harder they work the better their lawn. They will be looking out for weeds and problems symptoms to treat accordingly. Lawn and garden research is part of their hobby, to try and test new products or way to treat the lawn.

Task undertake -Everything! - They follow the lawn calendar. Over-seeding, feeding are standard practices in spring and autumn time. They understand grass is a plant so soil maintenance is also part of their lawn regime (scarifying, adding top soil/ dressing etc..)

Ernest's Shed

What equipment does Ernest have – He probably has a collection of lawncare tools in his shed, because they he is in a constant search for the perfect durable equipment. (Quality depending on personal income).

  • Mower: Definitely a roller one or even a motorised one depending on the size of their lawn. He services it/ oils it…and probably even learnt how the engine works in order to service it properly.
  • Annex tools: He has a manual edger as it leaves a neater finish, scarifier (although he realised that the garden fork is the best option), hollow tine, weed grubber, manual scissors…you name it.
  • Watering: Ernest could have an automatic irrigation system, or have a good sprinkler to get an even finish across the lawn.
  • Lawncare Products: He definitely buys lawn seed every year. He uses lawn treatment; the type he buys depends on his personality and knowledge. Ernest can even feed the lawn with straights if he is traditional and has the right knowledge. This group is the only one that also takes care of the soil (treat it with garden lime and scarify). Ernest is also aware of seasonality feeding (specific for autumn)
Expert Ernest's Shed

What Ernest Wears – Quality, hard wearing, fit for purpose gear. The clothes will be well worn and lived in.

Ernest's Garden

Ernest views his garden as a show-room. A place that invokes praise and admiration from others. It is a reflection of his passion and dedication. It is about the whole garden vision and how every single detail works in harmony. Ernest is in control of his garden. It is his blank canvas that allows creativity and changing opportunity. In a nutshell the emotion he feels around gardening is pride.

Expert Ernest's Garden
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