Recently Vision 2020 sponsored and assisted Heather Evert in removing part of her lawn and replacing it with richer soil, compost and native plants. How does this fit into our vision?
Vision 2020 Bloomington-Normal is part of the Transition Initiative, an international movement preparing for the impacts of climate change and peak oil by promoting sustainable living in all areas of our lives. We want to live and be the change we seek.
So, what is a lawn and why remove it?
A lawn is a symbol and a practice of non-sustainable living and has these effects:
Severe degradation of the surrounding ecosystem; harm to human health, especially in the case of degraded drinking water supplies; harm to flora and fauna and their habitats; sedimentation of surface waters caused by storm water runoff; chemical pollutants in drinking water caused by pesticide runoff; health problems caused by toxic fertilizers, toxic pesticides, improper use, handling, storage and disposal of pesticides; air and noise pollution caused by landscape equipment; invasion of wild lands by non-native weeds and insect pests; and over-use of limited natural resources.
How do Transition Town groups approach the job of lawn removal and sustainable landscaping?
Removing a lawn (even a scraggly one) is a tough job and not easily tackled by one or two people. In the spirit of being the change we seek and building resilient and sustainable communities, Transition Initiatives, like Vision2020, throw a Lawn Removal party and help each other do the job!
Heather Evert’s lawn removal party was the first for Vision2020 and was great fun and a great success (See video below). We expect to do more Lawn Removal parties in the upcoming weeks, so stay tuned and join us for the next one!
Great to see! My wife and I are slowly following the same process around our home. We have a new raspberry/strawberry patch and large vegetable garden where there was once a classic, American lawn. It has been great to watch our kids romping through the raspberries instead of roaming over a green desert.
Once again, the laborers, participants, and visionaries are female. Men inside alone, watching American Idol, Nascar, or squeaky-feet working hard on the couch on their diabetes, heart attack and/or stroke
I would like to see a photo of the space a year later then two years later to see how it turns out.
I have a beautiful lawn that is pesticide free. I don’t mind pulling weeds out of the grass and I don’t mind seeing a few dandelions.
The increasing pace of urbanization, has completely changed the natural systems that have governed the landscape for thousands of years. Along with deforestation, topsoil that supports native species has been stripped. The remaining subsoils have been compacted to such densities that their stormwater infiltration capacity is reduced to the equivalent of pavement. Surfaces have been sealed with asphalt and concrete, often leaving only token remnants of green spaces within which we place one or two orderly, lollipop shaped trees with some turfgrass beneath. The incredible diversity of our native plants has been traded for a few sterile, imported species of trees and shrubs.
Returning to the Natural Approach
Building a Sustainable Community Forest
Lawns are emblematic of the empire-builder philosophy. That one can reclaim and dominate nature as if the Wild was a heathen subject to the dominant species control is so over. Share your environment with more species, let them talk to you of other things that don’t lie and join the 21st Century.
Not true! The men just aren’t in these few photos. The men present did a few different jobs: shoveling compost and mulch into wheelbarrows, transporting full wheelbarrows from one spot to another, documenting the event, and cooking for the potluck.
You probably think you’re a victim of sexism.