Mix-up the facts in this article along with other news stories of folks in different states who are receiving fines and summonses for doing away with “lawn” and instead, planting “edible gardens” – vegetables and herbs – in their yardspaces… it seems you can’t win for losing. Truly, though, for me, a “grass-only lawn” IS a waste of space AND water, no matter where you live. It’s all part of the old “flee to suburbia” rat-race, putting as much space between you and your neighbors as you can, instead of planting something useful for your family and neighbors. After all, only the “wealthy” can afford to continuously care for so much empty space. Whatever became of working with and sharing produce from community gardens?
I am not advocating a look of empty, unkempt lots filled with beer-cans and clumps of weeds three-feet tall. My homestead – FaerieHaven – sits on a half-acre on a corner lot in Suffolk County, L.I. The expanse contains a mix of clover, crab-grass and regular grass, dandelions, bluebells, violets, plantains, ivy, crunchy brown grass, weeds, patches of dirt… and some flowers deliberately planted here and there… and you know what? It’s FINE with me just the way it is. It gets mowed, it’s tidy, it’s clean, and the space is welcoming. I’ve got birdbaths and feeders which encourage local wildlife to come visit. I do not need to buy exhorbitant amounts of water monitored via the Suffolk County Water Authority’s meter just to pour it into the ground to irrigate a wasteful “pristine lawn” which then needs mowing and then more watering so it can grow, again, which needs mowing, again and again and again. If that’s what I’d wanted, I might have chosen a more “upper-crust” neighbrhood, or maybe “planted” a fake lawn. But that’s not who I am.
For now, I’ve got a tiny little farm plot near my back door where I have finally succeeded in growing some veggies and lots of herbs. I water them with a hose. I also have a Sacred Circle space with small boulders and other rocks as a boundary, where we gather and pray. I. DO. NOT. NEED. A. LAWN… to be happy. And a lawn is not the same thing as grass… which I have… here and there.