How often do you get a chance to accomplish something good by doing nothing? By taking it easy on lawn mowing for at least a few weeks in spring, we can help provide a favorable habitat for pollinators like bees and butterflies.
The Village of Westmont has taken a formal step toward encouraging this behavior with its “No Mow Till Mother’s Day” program. The Environmental Improvement Commission (EIC) proposed, the Public Works Committee recently recommended, and the Village Board approved, a resolution to launch the program.
Westmont residents are invited to register online. Once enrolled, they will not be subject to lawn-mowing code enforcement through Mother’s Day, May 9. After that date, regular enforcement resumes.
People may even choose to designate a specific small section of their yard for the no-mow event. The village will provide and deliver yard signs to explain the reason for the taller grass and “weedy” species like white clover, violets and dandelions.
“Pollinators are essential to the success of our environment,” said Jon Yeater, who helped launch the program. Many species of pollinators live on lawns after they emerge from hibernation in the spring, he said. By not mowing during this critical time, pollinator habitat is left mostly undisturbed, which allows the flowers that pollinators rely on to grow at a time when resources might otherwise be scarce.
The first initiative of its kind in the DuPage area, the program was inspired by a similar one in Appleton, Wisconsin, which focused on giving bees a boost. Appleton’s 2020 “No Mow May” lawns found a fivefold increase in bee abundance and a threefold increase in bee diversity in June, compared to nearby parkland that was mowed regularly.
Pollinator- and butterfly-friendly lawn and garden practices help replace habitat lost to development, and provide a way for people and pollinators to happily thrive together. Timing lawn mowing for the benefit of early spring pollinators is an important step in promoting their recovery.
Who can argue with being lazy if not doing something will help the butterflies and bees?
A great idea! Amazing results in Wisconsin.
Who new? During our very short spat of warm weather I saw all kinds of bees flying around😊.
I’m in Downers Grove. Can I buy a sign so my neighbors don’t think we’re lazy?
I don’t think a sign for WESTMONT’s No Mow til Mother’s Day will help your neighbors understand what you’re doing. I suggest making your own sign to let the neighbors know you’re helping the bees.
I also suggest you check Downers Grove’s lawn ordinance to see what is allowed and cut your grass before it exceeds the allowable lenth.
You can also contact your trustee and ask them to consider a No Mow program in 2023. Wheaton and Lombard are both considering a No Mow til Mother’s Day program for next year.
I also live in Downers Grove and would also live to buy a sign to promote this great program.
I am not planning on mowing until after Mothers Day.
Nobody cares, really. There is one sign on our block and it’s considered the block joke. Only in a silly village like Westmont would they come up with such a thing. It only allows wasps and hornets more time to build bigger nests. My drunk neighbor had the goofy sign on the parkway and is drunk, high and mowing at 7AM on MOTHERS DAY.
Just for the uniformed that’s on a Sunday. He stayed up all night getting smashed and now is getting yelled at by other neighbors. Only in Westmont would they come up with such a stupid idea that encourages the nuisance people of their blocks to let their dandelions grow, let the lawns look bad and encourage wasps and hornets.
There aren’t any people keeping bees in Westmont, it isn’t Appleton, Wisconsin.
Besides aren’t the insecticides they use at Oak Brook Hills golf course in Westmont starting in early April killing off more bees then anything else?
You know the golf course where Westmont approved to put a 300 unit, 7 story, Section 8 apartment building that would be right on Cass Ave?
I retire in two years and will be moving far away from Westmont, it’s the suburb that makes the ones around it look bad because of the greed of the Village Board.
This is a tremendously good idea for habitat / ecosystems generally. Also the longer that grasses are allowed to grow, the more carbon you’re sequestering, the deeper and broader the root systems can grow, and the greater the water holding and infiltration capacity of the land. This is good development!
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