Why dont we turn our front yards into a garden rather than have grass?

Small front garden ideas no grass UK

Closely shorn grass lawns first emerged in 17th century England at the homes of large, wealthy landowners.

u2026 Before lawnmowers, only the rich could afford to hire the many hands needed to scythe and weed the grass, so a lawn was a mark of wealth and status.

To this day, the immaculately maintained, perfectly uniform in color is viewed (by some) as a status symbol.

(As a child, our next-door neighbor had a front lawn he weeded with a pair of tweezer and a magnifying glass u2014 I kid you not!),u201c.

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every society that grows extensive lawns could produce all its food on the same area, using the same resources, and .

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world famine could be totally relieved if we devoted the same resources of lawn culture to food culture in poor areas.

These facts are before us.

Thus, we can look at lawns, like double garages and large guard dogs, [and Humvees and SUVs] as a badge of willful waste, conspicuous consumption, and lack of care for the earth or its people.

u201d (Bill Mollison),As other answers have noted, organic gardening can indeed be a great deal of work.

Back in the 1980s in the UK, a man named Robert Hart began working his smallholding in Shropshire and soon found too much work was involved, but noticed he had a small bed of perennial vegetables and herbs that needed very little attention.

He developed his property into what he called a u201cforest garden,u201d and his theories have been further researched and developed into a global movement called u201cpermaculture.

u201d Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature; of protracted and thoughtful observation rather than protracted and thoughtless labor; and of looking at plants and animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single product system Permaculture principles can be applied to suburban lots as well as larger forest gardens u2014 and in temperate as well as tropical climates.

,The photo above shows the edible front yard of Tenth-Acre Farm.

One of the hallmarks of a permaculture is very minimal maintenance u2014 this is achieved by assembling a collection of plants that work well together and can achieve a relatively stable steady-state.

It has been reported that Robert Hart, the Englishman who developed the idea of a u2018forest gardenu2019 eventually became frail enough in his later eighties he couldnu2019t do much physical work u2014 nevertheless he ate from his garden daily.

,The direct answer to the question is that the reason we donu2019t turn our front yards into gardens are found in the historical development of front yards, the dominance of a monocultural approach to farming, a perceived lack of time to work the land, and the lack of sufficient knowledge to help us find a better way.

The last of these has now been dealt with.