Mother Earth News Blogs > Ask Our Experts

Ask Our Experts

Answers to your questions about gardening, energy, homesteading and other sustainable living topics.

Where Can I Learn More About Using a Scythe for Cutting Weeds and Brush?

By Heidi Hunt

Tags: tools, homestead, mowing,

Where can I learn more about using a scythe for cutting weeds and brush?

Fred Wark
Pinckney, Michigan

A scythe is a long-handled tool used for cutting grass, grains, weeds and brush. It is an ancient harvesting tool, still used in some rural agricultural areas of the world. A sickle is similar to a scythe, but has a much shorter handle and is used with one hand, while a scythe requires two hands.

Scythes are enjoying a renaissance as people look for ways to eliminate the need for fossil-fuel-powered mowers. In addition to producing excellent “mowing” results, the use of the scythe is a great cardiovascular workout.

The Scythe Supply and The Marugg Company both sell scythes with custom handmade snaths (handles) of local wood and Austrian-made blades. The blades are available in different sizes for both grass and brush cutting. Both companies offer accessories, such as sharpening stones, and book and video instruction on sharpening and the correct use of the scythe.

For more information on the history and usage of the scythe, you can read the article The Scythe by the Scythe Supply founder Elliot Fishbein, and The Scythe Book.

— Heidi Hunt, assistant editor