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  • Writer's pictureJason Weening

LAWNMOWER WANNABE FARMER: ME

Hey Dads!  Are you a farmer?  Do you wish you were a farmer?  


I do.  But, alas, I am not.  


I used to work in the agriculture industry manufacturing equipment for potato, carrot and onion farmers so I saw how farmers really live the good life.  Right, farmers?  So I decided to give it my best shot with my almost-one-whole-beautiful acre.  


My beautiful wife didn’t think one acre warranted an actual tractor but I convinced her it did need a riding mower.  Did you know you can buy teeny, tiny implements to pull behind your riding mower?  Oh, yes.  At Home Depot.  But since I’m too cheap to buy brand new expensive things like that I scoured Kijiji and Marketplace for some rusty old discs and cultivators.  I’m so much not a farmer that I’m not really sure what the difference between a tiller and a cultivator is.  (Quick google search.  Now I know.  It confirmed my suspicions.)  


Being the bargain hunter that I am, I picked up three beautiful, tiny, old, rusty implements that had been lying in a rust pile in the back corner of an actual real farmer’s property.  But they were going to work for me.  The kids weren’t as excited about these beauties as I was but soon they would stand in amazement as we tore through the earth in pursuit of fruitful “farming”.  The implements weren’t pretty but as my dad always says, “Who cares? They just dig in the dirt!”  I was now the proud owner of a trifecta of “farming” implements - a tiny plow, a tiny disc and a tiny cultivator.  These I would pull behind my very powerful Craftsman riding mower…almost.


If you know anything about tires you know that there are turf tires (smooth, don’t wreck your grass, on most riding mowers) and farm tires (more aggressive tread, wreck your grass, not on any riding mowers that I’ve ever seen except maybe some souped-up ones at a fair or something).  My powerful lawn “tractor” had nice slick smooth turf tires.  How well do those tires grip when pulling a plow?  Well let’s say “pulling” isn’t exactly what was happening.  “Spinning” would be more appropriate as my tires did exactly that.  


My kids just watched and shook their heads.  And asked over and over if they could have a ride.  My farming lessons continued.   What do you do if your mower’s wheels are spinning?  Smart people would probably say that you don’t use your mower to plow.  I said, “Let’s find some snow chains for these tires to give them some grip!”  A quick Amazon purchase later and I was plowing up my yard…almost.  



Another thing that real tractors have is a 3-point hitch.  I was smart enough to know this.  


What Canadian Tire lawn tractors have instead of a 3-point hitch is a small hole punched in a piece of flimsy sheet metal.  A real tractor’s 3-point hitch would keep a plow oriented properly to plow the dirt.  A small hole punched in a piece of flimsy sheet metal would not.  


My plow flopped over to the side.  A smart person would say, “Maybe I shouldn’t be plowing with my lawn tractor.”  I said, “Hey kids, can one of you walk behind me with this steel pipe to hold the plow up straight?”  


We were finally plowing!  Plowing very poorly but plowing nonetheless.  Discing and cultivating would come next and my expectations were high.  Find out how that experiment went in the next blog.  Dads, take some time to try something new with your kids and be really bad at it!  You’ve first got to be bad before you can be good.  Time flies!  Make every moment count!  Even the failing ones.

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