Simplicity appeals to the lazy person

April 4, 2007

I am lazy, I admit it.  I hate mowing, weed-eating, edging the lawn.  Not only does the lawn take precious resources in water to keep it green but it takes precious time.  From April to November, my husband spends a minimum of 2 hours a week mowing, weed-eating, edging, and more if watering is necessary, which it usually is in our drought prone part of the world.  Every spring we spend 2 days spreading an organic compost top dressing to feed it and keep it healthy.  Every summer we spend hours fretting over the brown patch or the chinch bug invasion.

No more I say!  I am throwing off the chains of suburban lawn and reclaiming my husband!   Last year we were too lazy and too environmentally conscious to water it as much as it needed to be watered and some horrid disease came in and killed half the lawn.  Hooray, bloody good job!  Except my HOA doesn’t agree that a dead lawn is a good thing, no matter how environmentally concious no grass may be.  And I admit, I like having a neat and tidy lawn.  I cringe when I see the big brown dead grass…..

I am taking this opportunity to replace the water and time sucking hog of lawn with a few large native beds, a la English cottage garden, and a hybridized version of a native prairie buffalo grass called Turffalo grass.   Turffalo was developed by Texas Tech University who was trying to find a good turf grass that was environmentally responsible.  The traditional St. Augustine grass used in Texas, most of which suffers extreme drought periods, was originally developed for Florida – which doesn’t suffer the same dry/hot cycles.   Turffalo, like its parent, traditional buffalo grass is slow growing vertically and only reaches a maximum 3 inch height, which means less mowing and much less weed-eating.  It requires much less water (2 inches a month to stay green) than its rival St. Augustine (12-17 inches of water a month).  It will also require much less work in the spring and during feeding time because it is native to our area.  My native beds will be wildlife friendly and waterwise.  We will plant butterfly host and nectar plants, berry bearing bushes for the birds and beautiful native hummingbird attractors, many of which we already have in our backyard wildlife habitat which will be used for reproducing these natural, native beauties.  

While my neighbors are out caught in the slavery cycle of lawn care this summer,  my husband and I will be sipping martinis on the patio or hanging at the pool with the boy and his friends.  

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