From the Woods to the Meadow and Back Again

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“A lawn is nature under totalitarian rule. “-Michael Pollan, author, journalism professor (b. 1955)

I recently heard the statistic  that 5% of all greenhouse gases come from lawnmowers.  It seems to me that manicured, weed-free lawns are a symbol of the American dream.  You buy a house, you take care of your lawn, and you find comfort in the fact that you fit in with the ideal.  I think grass is boring.  Not only boring, but just a shame.  It makes for a great carpet and having some to run around on is nice, but I am trying to do my part to cut down its hold–at least in my yard.  The slideshow illustrates our nature walk yesterday in which we visited the woods and the meadow.

We let the back 1/2 acre of so of our yard grow up into a meadow.  We cut a walking path through it so we can stroll there.  It provides a great place for wildlife to eat, reproduce, and find shelter.  It is like an oasis in the American desert of lawn.  We find frogs, toads, turtles, rabbits, all manner of insects, and deer there–along with all we don’t see. 

We also have a few spots of woods on our property.  Going into these places always feels like hallowed ground to me.   I feel like the intruder in these wild places–and, I guess, I am. 

Of course, the garden, fruit trees, and soon to be high tunnel also take up about another 1/2  acre.  The chicken yard and goat pastures take up another half.

So, we are getting there….and mowing less.