Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Lawn rant

Well, it is raining yet again! Fortunately I enjoy rain, it is the perfect excuse to sleep in or simply putter about the house. The yard and gardens look incredibly green while wet and I am wondering how I will ever be able to mow the backyard... So while the soup pot is bubbling, I shall vent my opinion about lawns.

I mowed the front yard last Monday during a bit of sunshine but did not mow my more private backyard. I suppose I do rebel against perfectionist lawn care of the type subscribed to by most of my traditional suburban neighbors. I refuse to mow in baseball field patterns, nor do I poison any "weeds" which tend to color my field of green. The violets and clover are welcome additions. I also really like dandelions with their beautiful sunshine yellow flowers because the early bees need their nectar. As an appeasement to my closest neighbors, I do dig out a couple bushel-fulls of the ever so obvious dandelions with a fork. Overall, keeping my yard looking somewhat cared for but maintaining my grounds as an organic worm reserve .

This perhaps gives the impression I am a bit unpopular on my street but actually I get regular compliments from walkers and residents about how pretty my yard/gardens look. I do mow the grass once a week, but I am firmly of the opinion that lawns are a major waste of time, energy and resources given their limited environmental benefits. This year I am committed to increasing the size of the gardens and slipping another raised vegetable bed into the front yard.

(Sub)Urban produce gardening is becoming a necessity give the current economic environment, much like the Victory gardens of the past. I think food farming will be an important addition to all neighborhoods. I am currently reading Will Allen's book, The Good Food Revolution, and it is a fascinating story of building an urban food base in Milwaukee, WI. Here in Missouri, the Kansas City group of urban farmers at this website,  http://theurbanfarmingguys.com/  compile a lot of information for potential urban farmers in this state. Some of this info is a bit beyond me yet (for example, tilapia farming), but I have been experimenting with raised beds, composting and rainwater conservation. So for now I'll savor my bowl of soup and gaze out the window.


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