A little while ago, someone wrote a post in my local Nextdoor.com community titled "Please Don't Poison Our City." It was a simple request, it would seem. The author was asking people to stop using chemicals on their lawns, because those chemicals do, in fact, poison our city and a lot more. Lawn chemicals have been linked to contributing to the growing oxygen-starved dead zones in our oceans, contamination of wetlands, deformities in amphibians, cancer in humans and our pets and more. The posting on Nextdoor.com generated several dozen comments and some interesting conversation. We wanted to take some time to mention some things that didn't come up:
Lawns take up about 63,000 square miles in the USA. That is a lot of space - roughly the size of several different states. Turning all of that land into what is basically a high-maintenance, toxin-soaked monoculture simply because some people think they look "pretty" seems like an extremely ill-advised thing to be doing in the face of mass-extinctions of species, the growing global climate crisis and the collapse of insect populations world-wide, particularly when there are toxin-free, low-maintenance things we can do with our yards that are beneficial to wildlife and human populations. Most notably: we can grow organic food!
At our own urban farm, we have been doing it for years. It is less work, more fun, more beautiful, healthier and it does not wreck the planet. Don't believe us? Check out this video from NowThis Future: