Does the mowing ever end?
The average temperature for the continental United States from
January through June 2006 was the warmest first half of any
year since records began being kept, according to scientists
at the NOAA National Climatic Data Center. As many U.S. states
suffer from drought, tensions over water usage are escalating,
particularly over the nation’s obsession for green lawns. In
Los Angeles, Fritz Haeg has launched a nationwide campaign called
"Edible Estates," helping homeowners convert their
water thirsty lawns into vegetable gardens or native vegetation.
"It’s about shifting ideas of what’s beautiful," says
Haeg. According to homeowners across the U.S. who have taken
similar steps to convert their yards into more practical (and
less water-hungry) plots of land, the biggest problem comes
from neighbors who believe such yards will reduce property values
in the neighborhood. Meanwhile, groups like Edible Estates,
are working to highlight the major problems inherent in fertilizing,
watering and applying pesticides to the millions of acres of
lawns across the U.S. "Diversity is healthy," says
Haeg. "The pioneers were ecologically-minded out of sheer
necessity, because they had to eat what they grew. But we’ve
lost touch with the garden as a food source."
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