Monday, September 28, 2009

Mowing Ditches

Above:  It's time to mow the ditches in GriggsDakota. The roads have grass and weeds that grow up beside them through the summer and that grass must be mowed down by October first. The grass is tall this time of year and this law helps improve visibility for drivers as they venture onto the road. It reduces the amount of snow that will catch on the road in the winter as our growing season is nearly over and the grass will not grow back this fall. It also helps ensure that the ditch will be ready to carry water during the spring thaw.
Above:  The highway department maintains the highways, but the maintenance on county and township roads is limited to surface work. The ditch mowing is done by landowners and farmers. It is a job Grandpa has done for many years on our farm in GriggsDakota. 
Above:  Here he is making the second pass with our six foot mower. It is important to get the grass cut well below the level of the roadbed.
Above:  Pulled by our 8930 tractor, this Woods rotary mower works like a great big lawnmower with blades that rotate under its top.
Above:  Specifically designed to mow ditches, the mower follows the tractor off to the side allowing the tractor to stay up on the edge of the road. The mower is hinged to follow the angle of the ditch and cut the grass down deep into the ditch.
Above:  This is a common sight in the fall and drivers learn to watch for the slow moving vehicle sign on the back of tractors. Every ditch on every fully maintained road will be mowed before the snow flies in GriggsDakota.

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