They cannot have the kitchen or the living room or the bedroom or even the bathroom. In fact, there’s not a single inch of indoor living space that men (with family) have control over. The wife and the kids own the home’s interior. That’s an unspoken rule and one that sticks up to this day. So, what’s a man got to do but go outside and look for a space that he can call his own? Alas, aside from the corner of the basement where he keeps his gym equipment and the garage (which is also occupied by gardening supplies), men found the backyard to be to his liking.
Lately, there has been an increase in interest in landscaping lawns and backyards. In fact, you can call a landscaping company anytime and learn that they are booked for the next month or so. The National Garden Association noted a significant increase in homeowner spending on lawn care products. Several surveys showed men are more likely to spend on the lawn than women.
Who likes having a large lawnmower, anyway? Who makes sure the grass is cut a specific height every week? Men refer to the lawn as their turf. Since they cannot very well decide what to do with their home’s interior, they might as well control what’s going to happen to their backyard.
For many men, the backyard is the biggest property they own. Sure, they own the house, too, but as mentioned above, they can’t do anything in the house that wouldn’t be met by sarcasm from their family. The lawn is the safest place to “own” in a property. As long as you keep the grass green and trimmed, men won’t need to hear anything from their wives.
They get total control over the lawn because their wives and children are too busy with indoor decoration anyway. Even when it is time to decorate for the holidays, men are always the ones you see climbing the roof to put up lights. They are also the ones who inflate the Santa Claus balloon so the lawn will look festive.
Of course, there’s also competition in the neighborhood. If the lawn looks anything but green, the men in your house will feel like they lost in a competition. When they see other men mowing their lawns, they get that instinct to mow their own backyard, too. It’s a healthy competition, no worries. Men are enviably able to compete with others without hating them to the core.
Like women, men are natural caretakers, too. They love being responsible for their family. They see the lawn as part of being a responsible husband and father. The lawn is a man’s work, they believe. It’s manual labor. They can tend the lawn either with their brute force or they can use a trusty lawnmower to do the job for them. It gives them peace to know that they have a part in the home maintenance duties.
Besides, plenty of women defer to their husbands when it comes to mowing the lawn. Not only are wives and mothers running around the house trying to get everything in order, but they are also bone-tired and weary. The lawn is the last thing in their minds. While they can tend to their plants because that relaxes them, the lawn is more of manual labor best left to the men in the household. It’s the equivalent of taking the garbage out. It’s stereotyping a bit, but it’s really a fact of a typical family’s daily life.
Men need their space. They need time to think about their careers, choices, money, sports, businesses, and even nothing. Yes, men have the ability to think about nothing at all. That’s when they’re really in the zone of repetitive motions—cutting the grass, mowing the lawn, cleaning the yard, etc.
If they see the backyard as their turf, that’s because they truly feel at peace while doing work there. Men rarely take what women feel is their turf in the house. They don’t care about sleeping in a bed with floral covers and they don’t bat an eye when there’s a framed photo of Audrey Hepburn in the movie room.
Don’t feel bad if the men in your house try to take over the backyard. At least, give them control over how the lawn should look like. They don’t bother you with their opinions when you’re repainting the bedroom pastel pink, so let them have the backyard as their turf.