Malo: Come tour Carbondale’s gardens

That lush, green lawn you’re so proud of may assuage your ego, but it’s a sponge soaking up water that’s becoming an ever-more precious commodity during our 22-year drought.

Don’t be fooled by the recent monsoons giving us a respite from the oppressive heat. They’re doing little to fill our reservoirs, and it’ll take two or three more years of heavy rain and snowfall to pull us out of this dry spell.

Consider turning over that sod and putting that water to better use (and other climate benefits) by planting vegetables, xeriscaping and native plants.

Don’t know how? 350 Roaring Fork is conducting a tour of some of the finest gardens in Carbondale’s Crystal Village neighborhood from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 27. We’ll meet at the southwest corner of Miner’s Park.

The gardeners will show their magnificent plots, offer tips and answer questions. Learn to grow vegetables, so we can have locally-sourced produce (instead of shipping it in from California), xeriscaping to avoid irrigation and native plants instead of the invasive Kentucky bluegrass.

Corporate food production and transportation accounts for a quarter of global, greenhouse-gas emissions. Eliminate the need for two-stroke-engine-powered lawn equipment like lawn mowers, weed whackers and leaf blowers. They’re not only noisy and kick up dust, pollen and mold, but they emit 23 times the carbon emissions of a standard, internal-combustion engine pickup.

And, whatever you plant, our friends the pollinators will appreciate your replacing the sterile grass. Do you like fruit and pretty flowers? Pollinators will take care of that for you if you give them a chance.

Fred Malo Jr.