Cities open registrations for No Mow May

No Mow May sign in De Pere
No Mow May sign in De Pere
Published: Apr. 20, 2022 at 10:35 AM CDT
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APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - “No Mow May” is growing in popularity -- growing like a weed, you might say. More cities are agreeing to waive ordinances for long grass and weeds in an effort to help the pollinators, like wild bees and butterflies, early in the growing season before there’s a wider variety of habitat and resources to forage.

Some cities require people who want to participate (or just want to avoid mowing their lawn for a month) to register with city hall or they could face the regular fines for letting their lawn go. After registration, you may need to get a yard sign from the city to show your participation (and also head off complaint calls from your neighbors). Some cities want their signs back after May.

Oshkosh requires residents to register by April 29. Green Bay extends that into the month of May, until May 7.

Appleton: No registration required

De Pere: No Mow May

Green Bay: No Mow May

Kaukauna: City of Kaukauna | No Mow May

Oshkosh: City of Oshkosh - Register for NoMowMay!

If you prefer the look of a freshly mown lawn, consider letting a section grow wild for the early foragers.

Studies have proven wild bee populations are in decline. These bees pollinate not just our gardens but our agriculture for the food we eat. Lawrence University researchers found properties that participated in No Mow May had 3 times the number of bee species and 5 times the number of bees compared to parks that were mowed.

Appleton was the first city in the U.S. to adopt No Mow May, inspired by a movement in the U.K. It says 435 Appleton homes registered in the first year, and the city recently voted to make it permanent.

Wisconsin Rapids and Superior recently adopted No Mow May. It’s also spread to Wausau, Stevens Point, La Crosse, Fort Atkinson and Wisconsin Rapids and now to other states, including Bangor, Maine; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Edina, Minnesota; Bangor, Maine; and New Paltz in New York’s Hudson Valley.

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