The New York Botanical Garden is a museum of plants, an educational institution, and a scientific research organization. Founded in 1891 & now a National Historic Landmark, it is one of the greatest botanical gardens in the world. http://www.nybg.org/
Front, back, side, or all of the above—if you own a house, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve got a lawn to take care of. But while we Americans in particular pride ourselves on our lush, neatly-trimmed green spaces, increasing suburban sprawl and the rampant rise in fertilizer use have certainly smeared the yard’s image.
So where did our obsession with Kentucky Blue and St. Augustine blades come about in the first place? What drives us to spend $30 billion a year on caring for our yards? Well, the fixation handily predates the picket fences and pushmowers of the 1950s, if you must know. Click through for a short history of the lawn, and thoughts on how it still dominates so much of our property. —MN
Suburbanites! How’s that lawn treating you? As we all know, perfectly-manicured turf has been a status symbol of sorts since the heyday of Eisenhower. But the dark side of the sprawl floats to the surface when you look at how much water and chemical fertilizer is dumped into the average front yard.
In response, a Petaluma, CA neighborhood came together to help one environmentally-conscious (and labor-conscious—lawns are a lot of work) resident flip the turf to an edible garden. In one day. Pretty dang impressive.
There are plenty of benefits to having a garden in place of a lawn, beyond the environmental impact—a near-constant supply of vegetables, for one. Have you ever considered dipping out on the status quo and going rogue with tomato plants and alliums? —MN