Green Lawns Ain’t Green

As we discussed in class, lawns, for the most part, are not in any way natural.  The lawns we think of today were first introduced in England during the early 1700s by Capability Brown, a landscape architect.

Obviously, one of the biggest problems with lawns are the harmful products used to maintain them; pesticides and herbicides.  One thing people tend to forget when it comes to lawns is the amount of water they use.  For example, in places like California or Nevada, where the landscape is supposed to be literally desert, people still have lush green lawns, which is obviously totally unnatural.

Another downside of a lawn is how much they take away and have potential to destroy a lot of natural landscape.  America has an extremely diverse variety of landscapes and all of the differing plant and animal life are there for a reason and have been adapting for thousands of years in order to efficiently survive in whatever part of they country they are found.

Why is it that refusing to participate in something so potentially destructive to so many ecosystems so taboo in our culture?  Clearly, it has to do with social status and fitting the cultural norm within our country.  But why waste so much time, energy, and money, on something detrimental to environmental diversity?


Victoria Obermeyer


One thought on “Green Lawns Ain’t Green

  1. I agree, many times lawns are a huge waste of water, precious eco space, money, gasoline, and can be ecologically harmful to upkeep. My family likes to play soccer, baseball, wiffle (??) ball in the front yard but our back yard is barely used aside from letting our dogs play in. I’ve been trying to convince my parents to plant more trees and put flowers, stones, other plants in between them. It would eliminate the need for a lawn mower and it would be more aesthetically pleasing than grass anyway. Not to mention, it seems like a magical place to relax in the summer. 🙂

    – Chelsea Walters


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