About this time every year, if I don't start bagging the clippings when I mow my yard I end up with brown clumps of grass everywhere. I don't have time to care overmuch about the upkeep of my yard, but I can't stand the way it looks when the trimmings are laying in long lines all around my property.
Our yard is about an acre in size, and I used to collect the trimmings by first mowing the yard on my rider, and then going behind with my push mower and vacuuming up the worst of the clumps using the four gallon bagging attachment that came with the little mower. A few years ago, I got tired of doing it that way and went out and bought the bagger that goes with my Husqvarna lawn tractor. This in itself has turned out to be a constant source of frustration.
The literature for the bagger stated that it could hold the trimmings from a quarter-acre sized yard. That means I should have to empty it about four times over the course of a yard mowing session. In my experience, I get about 4 long rows of clippings into the twin bags before they fill up, and I make between 12 and 15 stops to empty the bags, and that's with the mowing deck set to the second highest level.
That itself is not a big deal. The worst part of the whole contraption is the little rubber gasket that is supposed to form a seal between the exhaust chute and the bagger's cover. The whole thing is a joke. There is no way that the little gasket would ever stay in place even if I did manage to somehow fit it into it's correct position. And as soon as it comes loose, grass clippings start flying forward out of the attachment and all over the back of my head, neck and shoulders.
Having experienced this once too often, I decided to solve the problem in the most efficient manner possible. I took a big contractor bag and cut it in half and then used Gorilla tape to attach it to the chute and the back of the bagger cover. I made it big enough that it would not tear when the cover was opened and closed, and I used a bunch of tape to ensure that it would stay in place for as long as possible. It works perfectly. I still have to make ten or more stops to empty the bags, but at least now I can mow the yard and collect my trimmings without covering myself in grass in the process.
The joy in this little victory is not, however, in knowing that I will no longer get so dirty while mowing the yard. It goes far beyond that and speaks to the masculine heart within me. It's the satisfaction of having solved the problem myself using only the tools at hand. God designed us to use our brains and our hands; to work hard and to think things through. With a little bit of Gorilla tape and half a contractor bag, I did just that, and that's what brought me such a sense of accomplishment.