Keeping land care clean year round has been part of the vision for Eat My Shrubs since it started in 2014. At last, we are close. It becomes increasingly difficult to maintain environmentally friendly, or organic, urban land care on a professional level as the seasons turn colder. To clear snow from 30+ properties with a level of quickness to efficiency clients expect is tough. Especially on day 4 of a southern Alberta snow “event”. There are occasions that require something more.
Before the snow even starts to build up, the leaves falling can cause headaches and dismay. They always build up in the wrong pockets of your property. Even if they are wanted for winter protection in the garden, and they should be, they do not ever land where they are the most benefit. Leaves just fall. So, to move them requires some effort, and, getting back to the whole efficiency thing. A hand rake on more than a couple properties, is a good way to wear out your shoulders in a hurry. What is an organic master gardener to do?
He gets an electric backpack blower.
I was loaned a gas powered backpack blower last winter (2019). It was given in lieu of an actual money transaction in exchange for some extra work I did. The old barter system if you will. This year though, I would have to purchase or rent something to help get through the winter, and save the shoulders.
Now, I know what your thinking.
Electric parts plus snow equals a short life span for the equipment, not to mention the cold, right? Well you are not alone. I was/am a bit concerned about blow back or a wind change, and snow getting into the motor, melting and frying something. And so, as it happens, around the same time as I acquired the new electric blower, I got a line on a used gas powered blower. Well after examining that blower, I realized it was not going to work. It was more designed to vacuum up leaves and put it in a canvas bag.
Well, to make a long story short, inspiration struck and using the canvas bag, with a little ingenuity, and some velcro tape, I made the electric blower a toque.
I left the nozzle installed that would have attached the bag to the original blower it came from. I did this because the electric blower sucks in air from all around it. This made me concerned about impeding that air flow as the spaces in the canvas fill up with snow. The plastic nozzle hangs down below the back, allowing for unimpeded air flow, without sucking up snow. It is only the beginning of November, but so far, it has been great. Not only does it work great, but it is quiet. I can hear the gas powered blowers 2 and 3 houses away, over my blower thats on my back.
Keeping land care clean year round
The summer equipment was all switched over to electric this past season (mower, trimmer/edger, smaller blower) with the mindset of keeping land care clean year round. A great success in my books. I did carry a gas mower as a back up, I used it once the entire month of October to attempt to pick up cherries from out of a lawn. The gas mower’s blade allows for nylon rakes to be attached which comes in handy sometimes. With the addition of the electric blower, Eat My Shrubs is now almost completely FREE of fossil fuels! The only fuel burned is in the pickup truck. I might just park Britney (the truck), if I can get a line on an affordable hybrid truck. Until we save up enough for that though, we will have to settle for 98% free of fossil fuels. We’ll call it a 2021 goal.
Visit Eat My Shrubs .com for more information on the services offered, or get some ideas for your own property maintenance.