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Maryland business hopes to capitalize on novel idea

Mike Staley, owner of McHenry Small Engines in Frederick, Md., recently expanded his space by 5,000 square feet to 8,000 square feet, hoping to capitalize on an idea where he picks up customers' mowers at the end of summer, stores them for the winter for about $30, services them and then returns them in time for the next mowing season. Staley keeps plenty of parts for almost any brand of yard and outdoor equipment.

The Frederick News-Post (Md.)

Six of the best: Mowing Machines

(Story from the UK - England)

If your grass-cutter has seen better days, now is the time to consider a new addition to your garden gadget collection – a lawnmower is, after all, the flagship machine of your outdoor arsenal

Mowing tips to maintain a healthy lawn

The roar of power mowers and the sweet scent of fresh-cut grass fill the air on sunny afternoons this time of year. Typically the weekly chore of mowing is, at times, a dreaded and hurriedly done deed. Such a simple chore, so vital to good lawn health, is often not taken seriously.

In fact, good mowing habits play a vital role in maintaining a healthy lawn. A well-mowed lawn not only looks better, it is also more resistant to weeds, insects and diseases. Here are a few tips on good lawn-mowing techniques:

KEEP IT SHARP -- A sharp mower blade makes an impact, especially if you are blasting through tall, thick grass. A sharp blade means less work. It also gives the grass that crisp, clean look after mowing.

Beauty aside, a sharp blade is important in maintaining a healthy piece of turf. Ragged leaf tips invite disease. Dull mower blades can cause the lawn to have a grayish cast a day after mowing. This is because the leaf tips have been shredded instead of cleanly cut, and they then turn brown.

MOW HIGH AND LET IT LIE -- Mowing frequency depends on the type of grass, the time of year and how often you water and fertilize. The general rule of thumb is to mow when the grass grows to one-fourth to one-third taller than its recommended mowing height. For instance, if your lawn is a Kentucky bluegrass, red fescue and perennial rye mix (most local lawns have this type of composition) it should be maintained at a height of between 2 to 3 inches.

Time to mow is when it is an inch or so above this recommended height.
Unfortunately, rainy spring weather does not allow us to get out and mow on a regular basis. It is not wise to cut excessively tall grass down to size in one mowing as this will cause the turf to turn yellow, then brown. Lower grass leaves that were at one time shaded now become exposed and burned by the sun. It is best to mow excessively tall grass a little at a time until it is down to the acceptable level. Rake thick clumps of grass clippings after each mowing until grass is at desired height. Otherwise it's good for the lawn to let a sprinkling of clippings lie.

CHANGE THE PATTERN -- Mowing in the same direction time after time will compact the soil and cause wear patterns, especially in the spring when the ground is soft. You can end up creating a washboard effect in which there are wavy ridges running at right angles to the direction of mowing. Take a different route each time you mow.

SLOW DOWN -- In a hurry to get the mowing job done so you can squeeze in a game of golf or go to the river? Slow down. Pushing the mower too quickly can cause a ribbed pattern in the lawn, a washboard finish, because you are moving the mower faster than the blades can make regular cuts. Taking a few extra minutes to mow will make a big difference.

Terry Kramer/For the Times-Standard
Terry Kramer is a trained horticulturist and journalist. She has been writing a garden column for the Times-Standard since 1982. To get in touch with Terry, send an e-mail to and put “For Terry Kramer” in the subject line, or write to Terry Kramer, c/o Times-Standard, P.O. Box 3580, Eureka, CA, 95502

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Not looking at the right stuff? Choose a brand from the menu above.
AGRI-FAB---Makers of fine lawn and garden tractor attachments lawn mowers
AMF---There are still a few parts available for these units through Murray
AMERICAN YARD PRODUCTS---Makers of Craftsman, Wizard, Poulan, Weed Eater
ARIENS---Currently we are only supplying Aftermarket Parts for this brand.
ATLAS---Built for the Canadian market by MTD
AYP---Manufacturers of Craftsman, Wizard, Poulan, Poulan Pro , Weedeater and more
BLUEBIRD---A few aftermarket items available
BOBCAT--- Many common belts and blades available for Bobcat Mowers
BRIGGS & STRATTON---The most popular engine we have all the parts you need!
BOLENS---One of MTD's product line. Sold at Lowe's and Home Depot
BUNTON---Aftermarket only for these mowers - no parts lookups
CARLISLE---Carlisle tires are the most popular tire used in the Outdoor Power Industry
CHAMPION SPARK PLUGS--- Popular Spark Plugs used In Outdoor Power Equipment
CLINTON---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
CLUB CAR---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
CRAFTSMAN--- Americas most popular brand of power equipment.
CUB CADET---We carry the Cub Cadet residential line. Not all Cub parts will be available
DANA--- Transmissions and Transaxles popular in the lawn and garden market
DIXIE CHOPPER---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
DIXON---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
DOLMAR---Chain Saws, String Trimmers, Demolition saws, hedge trimmers and more
DYNAMARK---Purchased by Murray several years ago, some parts available for these
ECHO---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
ELECTROLUX---/ American Yard Products, some AYP equipment with EHP model.
ENCORE---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
EXMARK---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
EZGATE--- Easily raise your trailers tailgate with this simple addition.
FERRIS---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
FHP---Another of the brand monacres for American Yard Products
FOOTE---Dana Foot and Spicer are - Outdoor Power Equipment Division Only
FRIGIDAIR HOME Products--- American Yard Products built
GENERAC---"Old Generac" and "new Generac" combined into this database
GILSON---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
GOODALL---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
GRASS HOPPER---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
GRAVELY---Aftermarket only for these
GREAT DANE---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
GREEN MACHINE---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
HAHN---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
HONDA--- (Power Equipment & Engines) Full line of Honda power equipment Parts
HUSQVARNA LAWN MOWER PARTS--- Mowers, Tillers, Snow blowers
HUSQVARNA HAND HELD---Chain Saws, Trimmers, Blowers and such
HUSKEE---Another buyout company of MTD, many parts available.
Hydro-Gear Parts and Replacement Units--- The most popular pumps and motors
No "I" Brands
JACOBSEN---Some parts still available as Homelite Parts
JOHN DEERE---Aftermarket only for Deere - Many belts blades,switches and more
KAWASAKI--- We have all of the parts for these quality Kawasaki engines
KEES---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
K-GRO---Another American Yard Products Product
KOHLER--- Full line of OEM and Aftermarket parts for these engines
KUBOTA---Many Aftermarket parts available for Kubota. - no parts lookups
LAWN BOY---Aftermarket only for these - no parts lookups
LAWN CHIEF---Produced by MTD. Thousands of parts available for Lawn Chief Models
LAUSON---Lauson engines and engine parts
LCT--- LCT engines and engine parts
MCCULLOCH---Chainsaws / Handheld equip. Aftermarket only for these
MCCULLOCH---Lawn Mowers produced by AYP
MONTGOMERY WARD--- Most montgomery Ward mowers were built by MTD
MTD---They're everywhere they're everywhere! MTD parts inside.
MURRAY---In its day, Americas most popular mower. Many parts still available
Oregon--- Chain saw bars, chains, and clutches. Oregon Lawn mower parts are also included here.
PEERLESS---Most parts and transaxles are still available
POULAN MOWER AND TILLER PARTS---AYP Poulan branded equipment here.
No "Q" Brands
RALLY PARTS--- Most parts are still available for Rally equipment
RIDGID Power Tools--- Bought by TTI, Most parts are still in production
ROPER---American Yard Products built Outdoor Power Equipment carry the Roper name.
RYOBI Outdoor Power Handheld--- All trimmers EXCEPT Yellow Shaft Models.
RYOBI Lawn Mowers---Manufactured for Ryobi by its parent company MTD
RYOBI Hand Tools---Power tools by Ryobi, Brushes, cases, cords and everything!
SCOTTS---Purchased by Murray, many parts available No parts for John Deere built Scott's
SENTRY--- Another Murray branded line of mowers and equipment
SEARS--- Craftsman branded equipment
SNAPPER --- ForestGump Shops Here! We carry most Snapper parts
SPICER---Transaxles, Differentials, and Transmissions By Foote
STANLEY---Stanley by Murray. Many parts still available for Stanley Mowers
STENS---Cross reference your Stens numbers into Rotary Parts
STIHL---Aftermarket parts only for Stihl saws and equipment.
TECUMSEH--- Thousands of parts still available for this discontinued brand of engines!
TILLOTSON---Tillotson Carburetors, Carb Kits, Floats, Gaskets and more.
TORO---Aftermarket parts only for Toro at this time.
TROY BILT--- MTD manufactures all of the parts for these Mowers and Tiller.
No "U" Brands
No "V" Brands
WALBRO--- Walbro Carburetors, Carburetor Kits, and Replacement Parts
WEED EATER HAND HELD--- String Trimmers, Blowers, Chainsaws
WEEDEATER MOWERS & TILLERS--- OEM AYP Parts Weedeater equipment here
WHEEL HORSE--- We carry Rotary brand Aftermarket parts for these
WHITE OUTDOOR PRODUCTS--- Division of MTD, we carry the full line of White Parts
WIZARD--- Wizard Power Equipment Parts and Accessories. (Power equipment only)
No "X" Brands
YARD MACHINES--- YardMachine mower parts keep your Yard Machine in top shape.
YARDMAN--- MTD built Yard Man we have the parts you need to repair them.
YARD KING--- Many parts available. Belts, blades, wheels, pulleys, spindles and more
YAZOO--- Aftermarket Yazoo Parts only

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