Mar 30, 2023 - News

Des Moines resident group urges city to adopt "No Mow May"

Illustration of a pause-button symbol painted on a grass field.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

A group of Des Moines residents is urging the city to adopt and promote citizen participation in "No Mow May."

Why it matters: It's part of a small but growing national environmental movement.

  • Early spring lawn mowing is harmful to some insects, especially pollinators like bees and butterflies, metro members of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom told the council in February.

Zoom in: League members are asking Mayor Frank Cownie to sign a proclamation in support of No Mow May.

  • DSM resident and league member Carolyn Uhlenhake Walker tells Axios they would like the city to add information about the no-mow movement on the city's Sustainability Program website where residents could voluntarily register as participants.

State of play: The league's requests are being reviewed. A proclamation is likely to be issued on April 10, city spokesperson Al Setka tells Axios.

  • Tall grass complaint enforcement won't begin until June, so it's unlikely that residents who participate would face city government hurdles, he said.

Of note: Municipal properties like lawns at City Hall or in cemeteries will be mowed on their typical schedules, Setka said.

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