Next Generation Robotic Mower
Battery-powered robotic mowers have been around for a while, but Husqvarna has a new one called the Automower. I recently had a chance to try it out and it worked great. The guide wire that runs around the perimeter of my yard was held down with stakes, so no trenching was necessary, and programming was simple. The whole setup took less than 90 minutes. After that, all I had to do was remember to look out the window once in a while so I could admire my mechanical groundskeeper hard at work.
The primary feature that makes this machine excel is the retractable, razorlike cutting blades. They’re just a fraction of the size of thick steel blades, which results in clean cuts, longer runtimes and super-quiet operation. I ran mine three times a week. My grass always seemed the same length and because the clippings were so small, they readily broke down into fertilizer. My grass actually looked healthier than it ever had.
The mower worked, rain or shine, for the few months I used it, even on the hills. And because of the random cutting pattern, it left no tracks around trees or against the fence. My son was extremely disappointed when we sent back the mower after the trial (mowing is his job).
At the manufacturer's website, you can check out a cool video and find a dealer near you. The Husqvarna Automower is a little pricey, but lawn services aren’t cheap either, and bragging rights? Priceless.
Mark Petersen, Associate Editor