Thursday Night Mowing League: Introducing ‘Ask Holly’

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This is the evolution of TNML — we’re bringing in an expert to answer landscaping questions: ‘Ask Holly’

I was sitting here at my desk one day thinking about how we’re going to advance the Thursday Night Mowing League experience and it dawned on me that we don’t have a true industry expert to answer questions in a legit manner from someone who has been in the trenches.

Sure, league members can communicate with each other and get anecdotal responses to questions, but I wanted my very own Mike Pereira. I need a rules official. I need a color analyst. I need someone who can drop knowledge on the Thursday night warriors out there.

And then it came to me: What about Holly? Would she be up for it? It turns out she’s not only up for it, I hear she’s been asking what’s taking me so long to introduce her advice column.

Holly is league member Canoe Kirk’s wife. I promise Holly is real and she runs the grounds and landscaping department at a Michigan community college.

And I promise her credentials are legit:

• Bachelors of Science: Landscape Architecture, Natural Resources minor
●Certified commercial pesticide applicator categories 3a, 3b, and 6
●PGMS Green Star Grand Awar Winner (NationalAward)
●Manger of Lanscape & Grounds at Washtenaw Community Colleges 295 acre campus.
●Pior To her current manager position, she was the Landscape Planner/Master Gardner at WCC

That IS NOT Canoe Kirk with Holly where she’s accepting a major award within the grounds and landscaping industry. / via Holly

You can follow Holly @AskHollyH or email your questions. I will forward them to our new expert.


TNML Mower of the Year Rankings After Week 3

  1. Matt Schmitz
  2. Fink in Illinois
  3. Adam Wanberg in Nebraska
  4. Coach Dave Holmgreen in Texas
  5. T.J. Bollmer

Also receiving votes: Canoe Kirk — readers continue to like his yard; Colton Lippert has had a strong season; T.S. Covey and his reel mower continue to impress, plus he works his dog into the content…tugs at the heartstrings of the voters.

TNML Mower of the Year Rankings After Week 4:

Last week’s rankings:

  1. Matt Schmitz
  2. Fink in Illinois
  3. Adam Wanberg in Nebraska
  4. Colton Lippert
  5. Dave Holmgreen in Texas

Commissoner’s yard report

Our big push this season is going to be in front of the tri-window where we’re determined to get some height. Enter two hydrangeas. They’re supposed to get big. From ground to the bottom of the window is probably three feet and the hydrangeas are supposed to get big, so there might be some pruning involved, but it’s also a fairly shaded spot facing the west so it’s possible they don’t get to full size.

To the right of the window is also on my mind. We’ll wait to see the hydrangea spread before thinking about visiting the nursery for something to consume that open area.

There’s been some trash talk about my lack of edging. I’ll have you know that locust tree has roots that will make you rethink your edging game. That means the weed eater gets heavy usage along the bed. Yes, I’m jealous of those league members who have clean, crisp lines.

As I was editing this column, I ordered a couple of yards of topsoil to finally get this flagstone job done. More on that next week.


It’s spreading

This is what it’s all about…Steve knew he had a window and performed…now his weekend is WIDE OPEN!

You make the call

Buy! Buy! Buy!

Thursday Night reports from across the United States:

• Tim G. in NW Ohio writes:

Got in a morning mow this Thursday ahead of travels this weekend. Still very wet out. Did a 4.5”cut with the ExMark. What a beautiful day for a mow!

• Chris in Milford, CT writes:

Since Brian b in Madison CT had scheduling issues so his Thursday mow moved to Wednesday chris s. in Milford CT stepped up and got it done today for the state of Connecticut.77* bright sunshine not a cloud in the sky during league play

thanks to @craftsmanfor a 2inch cut @bolens for a great edge and @guiness for the refreshing drink to appreciate the work put in.

keep it real joe as you do

• David N. in McKinney, TX writes:

We had some rain the last few days, the grass is growing & a cut was needed 2 weeks in a row. I spent some time weeding over the last several days, it’s a constant battle, but I’m ahead on the score right now. 

Margo’s Flower Garden, however, is crushing me. Proud of my girl. 

I tried some diagonals today, not real visible but I’m trying. 

As always thanks to #Kobalt, #New Balance, #Sears, & special thanks to #Dos Equis.

Tee time as usual is 5:30!

• Dave from Michigan writes:

Greetings from Michigan where the grass was pretty high after all that rain, I’ll have to get a 2nd cut in on Monday for sure. Had to get the 2020 Koozie out to celebrate the Trump Comedy tour kicking off on national TV last night and to hopefully trigger any Saturday mowing lib neighbors. There’s not a stand up comedian currently funnier than stream of consciousness Donald. 

We mow in May here

Ann Arbor commies do not

We will do hard things

• Rob S. in North Carolina writes:

Got a late one in, but letting me play a round Saturday is worth it.  Keep up the work men….shout outs STIHL/TORO/BOBCAT/NISSAN TITAN 227K work truck

• AL in Onalaska writes:

Greetings again from western Wisconsin where the Mighty Mississippi River is finally receding and giving me a large swath of my yard back which has expanded the normal pre-mow walk of looking for mowing dangers.

Normally I get the dog bombs, large sticks, hoses, etc. out of the way.

Additionally this time of year I need to add turtles to the list ( I’ve given up on frogs, I swear some of them are on a suicide mission).If you’ve never confronted a large Snapping Turtle belive me, they are indeed slow but very quick for the first 18″ burst.( see att. pics from this AM and signage in my front yard)

You DO NOT want to run over a turtle. Besides the mess they can do mower damage.

As I was doing this routine it got me to thinking of something the TMNL members can maybe help with.

Best way to deal with garden hoses?

I have never had one of those plastic reeling carts that lasted for more than one season without kinking hoses and leaking like a sieve. Putting them on a hanger is a pain as to not twist them.

I currently am just stuffing it under a bush.

Do those expandable hoses work? And last long?

Thanks for the sticker!!

No back bumper for that baby, front and center.(see att.)

@johndeere, @milwaukeetool

Wheels down, blades sharp!

Thanks for being part of my day.

Screencaps.. come for the camaraderie, stay for the eye candy is what I tell my buddies.

P.S. I did the good deed of helping an elderly neighbor by cutting down a tree of his and he thanked me by dropping off a 12 pack of bud light. Ughh. Gonna have to pre-cook a lot of brats to get rid of it.

• Jason in Far Nor Cal writes:

It was a beautiful night to lay down some stripes. I feel like an IG model photographer that hides blemishes in my angles. Hopefully there are some other members are as weird as me. Listening pleasure tonight provided by Cake, who I will be seeing live tomorrow night with one of my sons. Have a great weekend!

Glen and Lisa write:

Got in a rare TNML. The newest koi pond almost done. Shout out to the guy down the road that delivered the junk Beetle for the waterfall. Love screencaps. Garage fridge is too far away for the sticker. Going to put it on the porch cooler.

Love reading “Do hard things “ Love book suggestions.

Love life in what’s left of America.

Best read on the internet.

Keep after it.

• Matt in Nashville writes:

Tonight was a wonderfully successful night. I was able to get in a great mow early that allowed for both my son – who got in his first real stripes *sheds tear* – and one of the pups to assist. Yard is looking good with their assistance, but I was also able to spend some time working on a big indoor project I can’t wait to share with the SC community. For now, check out the yard, the little man doing his part, and the good girl who knows not to lay down next to Bud Light. 

#Honda going strong with assists from #ryobi and #stihl

• Indy Daryl writes:

Another week, another mow, and this makes it a solid 4 for 4 on league night mows. I know we have a long way to go, but feels good to start the year out right.

Wanna send a huge congrats to both Fink and Matt for their post game pressers last week. Absolutely incredible!! Well done and thanks for taking the game to new heights.

As for this week’s mow, conditions couldn’t have been more perfect. Weather in the low to mid seventies, sunshine, and the sweet sweet sounds of blades on grass. Cheers from the back deck, recently “decked out” by Mrs. Do Hard Things with an awesome assortment of beautiful plants. Have a great night and I look forward to the reports tomorrow!

• Brent H. in Clemmons, NC writes:

Love the league.  Quick question to all of the TNML’ers out there,  am I the only one that edges the old school way? Just wondering 🤔

• Joe R. in Virginia writes:

Week 4 TNML is a wrap. Late afternoon mow on one of the first real humid days we’ve had this season. Bagging the waste is a must with this heavy growth. This week’s projects were to grab two loads of mulch for my neighbor, and power-washing the patio so it’s ready for a beautiful Mother’s Day. 

Good news – the grass seems to be recovering from the herbicide overspray. Bad news – so does a lot of the clover. 

Counted 3 other mowers so far this evening, and one lawn service. 

Shoutouts to #Husqvarna, #HighNoon and #TheMowerGuys (not sponsored) for keeping my small engine tools tuned up. 

Written by Joe Kinsey

Joe Kinsey is the Senior Director of Content of OutKick and the editor of the Morning Screencaps column that examines a variety of stories taking place in real America.

Kinsey is also the founder of OutKick’s Thursday Night Mowing League, America’s largest virtual mowing league.

Kinsey graduated from University of Toledo.

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