Machinery has of course transformed gardens. In 1900, without garden machinery, it was necessary to employ several men to care for an intensively managed acre. By 2000, garden machinery had made it perfectly possible to do-it-yourself. The transformation compares to that effected by agricultural machinery: a 1,000 acre farm needed 50 men in 1900 but by 2000 it could be done by the farmer and a couple of men with powerful tractors and harvesters.
Another result of garden machinery is the rise of the owner-designer-manager. The noble families which made the great gardens of the past were only involved in maintenance work to a trivial degree. Arts and Crafts theorists argued that designers should also be craftsmen. Garden machines made this possible. The range of mechanical equipment, power tools and equipment now available is extensive
Needless to say, it also becomes necessary to have a workshop, a garage and a friendly mechanic.
Grass mowing at Sissinghurst, with a well-oiled 4 stroke petrol mower.