Rain Spurs Grass Growth; City's Budget Limits Mowing

Recent rains brought Tulsa out of a drought. The city said its budget does not allow for very frequent mowing of city properties, which could be problematic with rapid grass growth.

"The biggest problem that the public needs to understand is we don't have enough money to mow the way we'd like to mow. You can imagine your front yard if you only mowed it once every 20 or 30 days. This is what we're dealing with," said City Planning and Contracts Manager Paul Strizek.

Strizek said the city contracts companies to mow city properties. He estimated there are about 100 workers that are involved and the city budgets roughly $3.5 million per year.

Strizek said some areas of town are mowed once every two weeks, which to him, is the ideal amount. He said his department, dealing with street right of ways, mows the same areas only about eight times a year.

Some residents have noticed some overgrowth around town.

"When you see it all growing up, you assume it's a money issue," said Midtown resident Susan Dean.

Strizek said property owners are responsible for mowing the right of ways adjacent to their land. The city can serve those that do not with a notice.

The city does not expect limb removal and debris pick-up from recent storms to impact the mowing of city grass, because the crews performing the work are different. However, Strizek said if debris litters public property that needs mowing, it is possible there could be some issues to work around.