The concept of the beloved front lawn is as American as apple pie, right? Most of us have memories of our fathers mowing and edging and reseeding and sodding and applying a variety of chemical stimulants to get the grass as smooth perfectly green as possible. But the soft, sloping expanse is about as natural to the United States as palm trees are to California, which is to say not at all. The idea of the lawn originated in England where it rains so much a sprinkler system is not required. But in the US not only is it necessary to install sprinklers, but most people use gas-powered lawn mowers and pesticides to maintain their lawns. The list of criticisms continue. Aside from being energy inefficient (and often times downright wasteful – how many times were those sprinklers turned on and forgotten?), most lawns are comprised of but one species of plant and work to decrease local biodiversity.
The alternative is the vegetable garden.