Alternatives to a green lawn
July 9, 2009
In her article on the environmental consequences of the United States’ obsession with lawns, Anna Naeser makes some crucial points about the damaging impacts of this beloved symbol of status.
However, though she points to many reasons to why this pastime is so hurtful to our environment, she offers no alternatives. In a world today that faces a plethora of challenges environmentally, for every critique there must be a plan of action, ways for personal impact, and an overall distribution of advice to all who want to maintain the environment in the most sustainable of ways. Lawns in the United States do perpetuate a mass of environmental injustices as resources are used to cut them and chemicals to maintain them.
After identifying and outlying the problem, the average lawn owner might want to consider the alternatives to a green lawn. A lawn of wildflowers requires much less maintenance and no chemicals. Transforming lawns into organic vegetable gardens works not only on the injustices of lawns, but spurs lawn owners and neighbors to a plan of food justice in limiting the amount of miles and resources our food usually takes up and uses. The most minimal approach, the “let your lawn go wild approach,” requires no work, and the average lawn owner acknowledges lack of control over nature and gives their time and energy to something else. Whether it be planting squash seeds, flower seeds, or letting the wind do the planting, everyone in possession of precise blades of green grass should consider something more “green” and sustainable, not only for themselves, but for the sake of our rapidly deteriorating environment.