A new aesthetic: The new All-American lawn
By Devin Floyd
“Punishing residents for taking care of the life we share the land with is irresponsible. It promotes ignorance, and it robs our children of place-based knowledge.”
I dream of a new All-American Lawn: one that is beautiful, handles its own storm water (slowing it and cleaning it before it reaches local streams), requires but one trimming a year, supports wildlife, keeps its fallen leaves, and inspires young and old to explore. In this vision lawns become an extension of natural history, and urban areas become bastions for biodiversity. My great grandchildren know a biological richness that doesn’t currently exist. They swim in urban streams again without fear of sickness. They have compassion for other forms of life. Living is more beautiful.
I want to see our city and county governments take more responsibility for supporting reasonable and sustainable landscaping practices. Punishing residents for taking care of the life we share the land with is irresponsible. It promotes ignorance, and it robs our children of place-based knowledge. I want people to have hope again. All is not lost; not even in an urban landscape. Nature is resilient, and powerful. We can each have a positive impact on the environment, even in a tiny lawn. It’s not all that hard to co-exist – to make room for other forms of life. Education is critical, and people need access to knowledge and solutions for having wild spaces instead of lawns, for the benefit of pollinators, birds, frogs, lizards, and other wonders of the Piedmont.