Overgrown vegetation limits visibility, hides potential hazards and makes right-of-way maintenance a pivotal function for municipalities. Whether the overgrowth blocks the view of traffic signs and signals, vehicles and cyclists, or people and animals, maintaining vegetation in a right-of-way is crucial to providing safe areas for motorists and pedestrians alike.
With state budgets getting tighter, mowing is becoming more and more the responsibility of municipalities. Many times, even in areas that should be maintained by state departments of transportation, right-of-way maintenance falls on cities because taxpayers associate the lack of maintenance with the city or county. Municipalities and townships are spending millions annually to maintain these state-owned right-of-ways. Therefore, efficient use of time and taxpayer dollars is important, especially when municipal budgets are being cut or adversely affected in a slowing economy.
When it comes to right-of-way maintenance, there are two candidates that can efficiently cut volumes of grass in a short amount of time — rotary cutters and flail mowers. By the numbers, rotary cutters are the most popular for roadside mowing but flails have their place, too.
Roadside maintenance takes a special rotary cutter. First, the rotary cutter should be made by a company that understands how the cutters are used and how they are maintained. Land Pride Cutters have been developed with input from contractors, municipalities, counties and states. The outcome of those collaborative efforts are the Land Pride 7 Series Rotary Cutters, available in 10-, 12- and 15-foot models and matched to tractors from 50 to 250 horsepower. Land Pride also has three 20-foot models for airports, set-aside acres and other open spaces.
The RC57 is the roadside workhorse of the family. It is heavy duty, easy to maintain and boasts a number of Land Pride exclusive features. From the tip of the LP Performance Hitch to the end of the all-new patented Parallel Pivot™ Axles, this feature-rich machine is one of best choices for right-of-way maintenance.
Speaking of those Parallel Pivot Axles, these unique axles provide the operator with unmatched ground contact for improved holding power on side hills and uneven terrain. The axles pivot on a central shaft that allows the tires to remain parallel to one another while never losing contact with the terrain. The axles can be equipped with laminated tires, used aircraft tires or new tires, and can be foam-filled if required.
The three remaining exclusive features really make the RC57 stand out in a competitive crowd. The flip spacers speed height adjustment. By simply opening or closing the flip spacers, the height is raised or lowered. The sliding center shield offers quick access to the maintenance points on the u-joints and for maintenance of the slip clutches. Lastly, Land Pride’s all-new Deck Armor™ provides the protection of a deck ring while maintaining cut quality — keeping the cut smooth, even and looking good; something that municipalities and contractors value in right-of-way maintenance.
Roadside mowers need to be durable and dependable. The Land Pride RC57 is just that. It comes equipped with drivelines that are easy to maintain, shortening the time to maintain them, meaning the cutters are cutting. Big among commercial mowers are the beveled skid shoes on the wings to prevent gouging, the fully welded decks for added strength and the replaceable side skirts so when that inevitable accident happens, the side panel damage can be repaired with a wrench instead of a torch and welder. Additionally, there are LED light kits to help put safety first.
For municipalities that need another option for roadside mowing, flail mowers are an excellent option when a rotary cutter is not the answer. Flails in general break down grass and woody material better because the clippings remain in the cutting chamber longer. The clippings are also directed downward reducing the chance of clippings being discharged. Specifically, Land Pride Flail Mowers offer quality craftsmanship and rugged dependability that all Land Pride products are known for.
Land Pride Flails are available in 3-point models, hydraulic offset models and boom models — each have their place. The Land Pride FM25 Series 3-point models will trail behind the tractor and are ideal for flat spaces in parks or along roadways. The Land Pride OFM Series of hydraulic offset flail mowers give the operator the ability to reach over inclines or get close to fences and buildings while keeping the tractor safely on level ground. The Land Pride FMP27 and FMP37 feature a parallel arm that extends 15 feet or 19 feet depending on model and allows the operator to reach over guard rails or down banks.
Land Pride Flails are available with a variety of blades to meet mowing needs of municipal customers. The FM Series is equipped with hammer, duck-foot or heavy Y blades. The FMP Series has either hammer or heavy Y. Lastly, the OFM Series is available with hammer blades only. The hammer and Y blades do well in grass or woody material; the duck-foot is primarily a grass cutting blade and would be a good option for parks or sports fields.
Consult a municipal sales professional
Roadside mowing offers unique challenges for municipalities. Consultation of an experienced professional can ensure that municipalities and contractors get the right mower for their needs. To make the buying process less time consuming for municipalities, there are many cooperative buying groups that government agencies can be a part of.
By purchasing through a cooperative contract, grounds maintenance managers in many government agencies can take advantage of the time- and money-saving benefits that the contracts provide. Land Pride offers contracts with several, including Sourcewell and BuyBoard just to name two. Cooperative buying groups make sure everything is transparent. For guidance, make sure you talk to a municipal sales professional at a local dealer. They are more than willing to assist municipal customers with their mowing needs.
For information, visit www.landpride.com.