No Mow May
Friends of the Metolius is initiating an effort to increase awareness of the need to help bee populations in the Metolius Basin. Studies have shown a steep decline in bee populations. The idea behind No Mow May is for homeowners to opt to let their lawns (or at least a patch of their yard) get a bit overgrown for a few weeks to ensure that when bees are coming out of hibernation and floral blooms are less common they have plenty of options for the nectar and pollen they need. It’s a small step towards making yards bee-friendlier. And a launchpad to start a conversation about the benefits of planting pollinator friendly flowers in your landscape and avoiding pesticides and herbicides.
After a few weeks of not mowing, your neighbors might wonder about the long grass (and perhaps if you’ve moved away or died!). To help answer those concerns, Friends of the Metolius has signs available to place in your yard if you’re participating in No Mow May, email [email protected] to get your sign. Also, free, print-at-home signs are available through the Xerces Society at https://xerces.org/publications/other/no-mow-may.
And a tip – when it’s finally time to mow, the best strategy is to reduce the height of your grass in stages rather than trying to cut it down all at once. It may be best to take a few weeks to get your lawn back to normal height.
There is no one right way to do this. You can adapt it to what is comfortable for you. Try Less Mow May – if you mow in May, consider reducing intensity or frequency. Or plant some new pollinator friendly flowers in your yard (for information about flowers start here: https://extension.oregonstate.edu/news/12-plants-entice-pollinators-your-garden). If we all do some small thing to help, we can have a big impact.