Friday, November 21, 2008

FOOD NOT LAWNS: A Better Way to Live - by Heather Havey M.A.

FOOD NOT LAWNS: A better Way to Live by Heather Havey, M.A.

The idea of the neatly-manicured, grass-dominated "lawn" was popularized by wealthy families in 18th century Europe. Most people could not imagine wasting so much space. While a lawn looks sparce, neat, or elegant, it is quite harmful for the environment in multiple ways:

(1) Destroys habitat for birds, animals, bees, beneficial insects, etc
(2) Contributes to global warming because people cut down most or all of the trees
(3) Wipes out such a wonderful opportunity to grow your own organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, or any food-bearing, beautiful plants.
(4) Lawn care maintenance is time-consuming and also pollutes via lawnmower fumes, leafblower fumes, and the application of deadly poisons (pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, etc) which kill not only weeds but also bees, insects, butterflies, birds, animals, and eventually humans.
(5) Is visually boring compared to the endless beauty of growing a diverse yard filled with food-bearing plants, shrubs, trees, flowers, and so on that COULD fill your yard.

"Food Not Lawns" is a movement that began in the northwest US by a group of dedicated, Earth-loving, caring people who realized that our popular notions of yard care simply do not support a healthy planet. Many people around the country are beginning to realize these lessons and making the change-0ver to sustainable, natural living.

What we have to realize is that our current way of living is destructive and not sustainable. We face limited and greatly diminishing natural resources on all levels of life, and if we do not change our ways, then we will lose more than half (or more) of species on this planet and we will also contribute to more human suffering, starvation, and disease through promoting and choosing destructive patterns.

Now that we know a better way, let us choose it.

Not only is it a better, healthier way, but it is also a more beautiful way.

And there is NOTHING so wonderful as watching your own plants grow from seed or from babies, taller and stronger into strong adult plants. Even more so, to walk out into your yard and pick your own organic vegetables or fruits, that you have nurtured with water and compost and sunlight and love, to eat at your table, fills your day and your whole meal with such gratitude and love.

So let us all begin to live closer to nature. If you have a lawn, you are so lucky! Because now you can convert it into a living, thriving, healthy, diverse and beautiful garden - a paradise right in your own yard.

Send your friends & loved ones earth-friendly ecards!

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