Maig – The Sub-Aqua Scythe

Maigs are a traditional long reach scythe – used in the Norfolk broads for clearing emergent vegetation in drainage ditches from the bankside. They are also useful for clearing excess growth from the margins of ponds and other water features. I first came a across a Maig on a tool collector’s stall at the Strumpshaw Read more about Maig – The Sub-Aqua Scythe[…]

Northern Scythe Festival Results

This year’s Northern Scythe Festival took place on a new site in the Forest of Bowland. The festival field was on a farm nestled up in the hills with great views out to the coast, including in the distance, Blackpool tower. The participants who came were treated to unlimited quantities of lovely lush Lancashire grass Read more about Northern Scythe Festival Results[…]

Green Scythe Fair Championship Report 2022

This year’s Green Scythe Fair and 16th West Country scythe competition was all good: the weather was good, the grass was good to mow, and gathering back the scythe community after three years absence, was more than good. There were smiles a plenty, and not just from winners of competitions. The standout image from the Read more about Green Scythe Fair Championship Report 2022[…]

The Green Scythe Fair is a learning experience

The upcoming West country Scythe Festival and Green fair offers fantastic opportunities to learn to scythe, or to hone your scythe skills and knowledge. It is not too late to book yourself on to one of the scythe courses running on Friday and Saturday 10th and 11th June (see details below) with some of the Read more about The Green Scythe Fair is a learning experience[…]

Blade Peening Services

International Peening Day at the start of this month aimed to highlight the importance of blade peening and scythe maintenance to get the best from your scythe. Some time ago, Michelle of Scythe Cymru put out a request for more experienced practitioners to offer a blade peening service; recognising that peening is a practical barrier Read more about Blade Peening Services[…]

Anti-clockwise scythes – Part 2 : What then is the point of a clockwise scythe set up??

(as published in Windrow 17 April 2022 – updated with photos) In part 1, I suggested that scythes are not handed tools, and as such referring to them as left and right handed was confusing and misleading. I proposed referring to the standard scythe set ups as anti-clockwise rather than right-handed scythes As so-called left-handed Read more about Anti-clockwise scythes – Part 2 : What then is the point of a clockwise scythe set up??[…]

Anti-clockwise scythes – time to put the label “Left-handed” Scythe to bed? Part 1

(as published in Windrow 17 April 2022 – updated with photos) As a scythe instructor one of the most frequently asked questions I get asked is “I am left-handed, would I be better with a scythe configured differently to regular scythes?” This is making the [not unreasonable] assumption that scythes are a handed tool, and Read more about Anti-clockwise scythes – time to put the label “Left-handed” Scythe to bed? Part 1[…]

The Scottish Scything Festival 2021

ON July 24th we had a blistering hot day at Blackhaugh farm for this years festival, over 200 people came along! By 9.30 most of the competition squares had been prepared, the signs were all in place, structures up and the chairs and straw bales were ready for play and use. Food vans were up Read more about The Scottish Scything Festival 2021[…]

Shropshire Hills Hay Meadow Festival Report

This Hay Meadow festival was held on Saturday 24 July 2021 behind the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre (run by the Charity GROW COOK LEARN) where there are 30 acres of meadows beside the Onny river. The meadow selected for the festival and scything competition was uneven, lumpy ground with dense, wiry vegetation including dock, lady’s Read more about Shropshire Hills Hay Meadow Festival Report[…]

Northern Scythe Competition 2021

A report by Jim McVittie. The Site Peter Blackwell farms at Bell Sykes farm near Slaidburn in the Forest of Bowland AONB and thanks to the efforts of himself, his father and his grandfather has some of the best wild-flower meadows in Lancashire. Peter had allocated the whole of a four acre field which gently Read more about Northern Scythe Competition 2021[…]