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December 14, 2006

Stihl FS 85R brushcutter

stihl FS 85 85R brushcutter
One of the best selling products in the professional brushcutting range is Stihl's FS series. The home range includes FS 38, 45, 45C and the .75kW 55R with the SuperCut cutting head.

But once you get into the professional series the FS 85R is the baby of the family. It's big brothers the FS 90R, 110R, 120 and 130R much meaner machines but they all carry their weight as well. The FS 120 carries an extra 2 kilograms more than the baby in the home series and almost double the kilowatts.

The FS 85R is still a solidly powerful unit touting .95kW of engine power and 5kg weight. The 85R is fitted with the loop handle while the FS 85 is supplied with the bull handles, so it depends on which operating feature you prefer.

Metal cutting blades are all standard on the pro series so spending time setting up trimming line is not necessary. The down side is obviously that you are unable to get into the tight areas or along fences with the one unit. If you are wanting one unit to do large areas plus trim garden fences and hard-to-get-at-areas then the best option would be the FS 55R.

The FS 85R will set you back about US$420 (A$540).

December 8, 2006

Lose the Lawn

As a fervent gardener I'm very keen to see more people interact with their gardens and grow more trees, shrubs and natives. However, when the argument for lawn vs garden comes up I find myself with one foot in both camps.

Regardless of some people's abhorence to growing lawns I find that they are a integral part of family life and are complementary in landscape design. Therefore, you will never find me beating the drum for either viewpoint but I enjoy challenging those that vehemently make a stand.

Then I came across Lose the Lawn, a US business helping homeowners replace their postage stamp lawns with landscaped gardens. This is a great idea, insofaras it helps people get into and enjoy the garden more than have some contractor come and routinely maintain their lawn.

Many people would prefer to have gardens anyway and the small scrap of lawn that adorns their house is a remnant ideology from the 50's. People are now replacing the lawn with paving, beds filled with native plants and reducing their watering, fertilising and pesticide use.

The only disadvantage to this notion that I see is that people might become too obsessed with the paving aspect and replace beds with container plants. This creates a whole plethora of problems including water drainage and the inability to suppress heat.

Provided these problems don't emerge I take my hat off to Lose the Lawn.

  • Stuart Robinson
  • Busselton, Australia
  • Email Me

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