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home which mower? Definitions

Definitions : Reel and Rotary

close up of brill reel hand mower blades.A Reel Mower is a mower in which the blades spin vertically (north to south) and use a scissoring action to cut the blades of grass. A reel mower should have between three and seven blades, depending on the model type.

  • Golf courses are most often cut with reel mowers which are pulled by a tractor.
  • A Reel mower pushed by people does not cut very high grass as well or as easily.
  • However, once the lawn is under control, the scissor-like cut of a reel mower is healthier for the lawn.
    cut away of a reel mower cutting the lawn.

A Reel mower snips the grass, cutting each blade like a pair of scissors. It's a precise, clean cut that makes for a healthier and more attractive lawn.

A Rotary Mower is a mower in which the blade spins horizontally (east to west) and uses a sucking and tearing action to cut the blades of grass. Rotary mowers usually have one blade which rotates very fast. The rotary mower design is simple and adapts very well to small engines. Rotary mowers can cut a wide variety of grass conditions. Rotary mowers are usually powered by gas engines or electric engines.

Mulching ("Grasscycling") means laying a "blanket" of organic matter over the lawn which helps to retain moisture and add nutrients. With the cutting action of a reel mower you can leave reel clippings on the lawn. A reel mower creates a fine spray of clippings that act as a mulch and decompose quickly, releasing nitrogen into the lawn. Over the course of a cutting season, that mulch is equivalent to a free application of fertilizer.

Many states (24 at this writing) and Washington, D.C., have passed laws banning the disposal of yard waste, including grass clippings in landfills. According to the Composting Council, yard trimmings are the second largest component of municipal solid waste (18 percent or 35 million tons).The Professional Lawn Care Association of America is promoting Grasscycling. This term means either composting or mulching the clippings where they are produced.

Reel Mowers

Earthwise 16 inch bent reel mower

Earthwise 16" Bent Reel Mower

+ FREE shipping

Model 1715-16EW

This reel mower is specifically designed to cut low-growing, creeping grasses.

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Earthwise 18 inch quiet cut reel mower

Earthwise 18" Quiet Cut Reel Mower

+ $35 shipping

Model 515-18

The Earthwise 18-inch Quiet Cut Reel Mower features a non-contact quiet reel system for quieter and smoother operation.

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Scotts 20 inch classic push reel mower

Scotts 20" Classic Reel Mower

+ $30 shipping

Model 2000-20

This large reel mower cuts as wide as a traditional gas powered mower but without the harm to the environment and loud noise.

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Hudson Star Classic Cut greens mower

Hudson Star Classic Cut Mower Reel Mower

+ $FREE shipping

Model Clasic Cut

Hudson Star Greensmowers have lower cutting heights than most reel mowers and will mow low enough for a putting green.

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Rotary Mowers

Earthwise 20 inch Cordless Electric Lawn Mower

Earthwise 20" Cordless Electric Lawn Mower

+ $31.99 shipping

Model 50214

The Earthwise 14" Corded electric mower delivers the performance of a rotary lawn mower without gas, oil or pollution.

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