Grass Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything


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Grass is a plant with blade-like leaves that has taken on a larger-than-life significance in many of the cultures of our wondrous planet.

Grass has a habit of sprouting on any untended land in any area that receives enough rainfall to support it, and, indeed, in the less populated areas of the Earth's surface this is the end of the story. It is the tendency of grass within highly populated areas to congregate into lawns that has had such a large impact on the lives of many.

The first way in which grass has affected us is by giving name to the 'grass is greener' effect. We can be an insecure bunch and are often easily convinced that everyone else has a much better life than ourselves, hence the saying 'the other man's grass is always greener'. This is not necessarily a statement to be taken literally.

The second and possibly more important effect grass has on people relates more directly to the formation of lawns in heavily populated areas. Most home gardens will have a lawn of some size or other, and lawns are also used for holding sporting events on (such as football, cricket and tennis), and also are a common site for wedding receptions in Hollywood movies.

The problem lies in that grass tends to grow very quickly, whereas the usual required length for a grass lawn is around one inch, and can be even shorter. This has led to an important ritual in many peoples' lives known as 'mowing the lawn'. This involves using a rather funky piece of apparatus called a lawn mower to cut grass down to a more satisfactory size. For best results this ritual should be repeated once a week, in which case the grass will not have had time to grow too much and the mowing process will be simple. Most people, however, choose to mow the lawn only when it starts to look too long, by which time any hope of being able to give the mower an easy time cutting the grass has long since past.

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