Welcome to lawn mowing season!  If you're like most folks, you probably don't give it much thought:  You hop on the lawn tractor or push the mower and get the job done as quickly as possible. However, you may inadvertently be breaking the law.

It's against city ordinance in Superior to displace the grass cuttings from your mower into or on the street or sidewalk.  A quick search of Duluth's ordinances didn't immediately turn up a specific citation about grass clippings, but there are a number of "debris"-related ordinances that could be legally construed to be enforceable in a similar manner. 

And while you might think to yourself - "I'm okay, I don't just empty my leftover grass clippings intentionally onto the city street or sidewalk", your inadvertent actions could be just as harmful.  Property owners should always be conscious of the direction that grass is displaced from their mower - for a variety of reasons.  In addition to the potential for grass being left on the street or sidewalk, mowers are also known to throw other objects like rocks that could cause other damage.

The reasons that grass clippings don't belong on streets and sidewalks is multi-faceted.  From an ecological standpoint, placement of lawn grass vegetation on these impervious surfaces gives them an easy route to municipal storm sewer systems, where they can eventually overload systems - not to mention the risks of excessive vegetation on our water systems.  At the same time, grass clippings can be very dangerous to two-wheeled vehicles like motorcycles or bicycles; the loose vegetation makes the road surface extremely slippery - causing wipeouts.