Thursday, September 30, 2010

Is artificial grass "eco-friendly"? What about the wildlife?

I was just reading an article that I found online called 12 Ways to Make Yard Care More Eco-Friendly. I was reading down the list of items, which included things like collect rainwater, use a lawn moisture meter, don't hose down your sidewalk, and thinking that it was a pretty good list, until I got to number 9) which said "consider using synthetic grass." That's the one that made me go "hmmmmmm".

I don't really know anything about synthetic grass, so I did a little research before I decided to form any opinion. The first sentence that I found about synthetic grass was all I needed. It said "no mowing, no weeding, no chemicals, no bugs, no birds......" Oh UGH, UGH and double and triple UGH!

To me, one of the wonderful things about gardens and landscapes is the life that they support: the birds, the butterflies, the insects, the worms. As someone who loves to garden for wildlife, I spend a lot of time encouraging people to choose plants that attract birds and insects. The thought of choosing something for a landscape that has NO value for wildlife just goes against SOOO much I believe in. If you are going to use artificial grass, you might as well use plastic and silk flowers. And perhaps you could have an outdoor sound system with music that "simulates" the sounds of birds and other garden wildlife.

But what do you think? Do the benefits of using something that requires no chemicals or water out-weigh the fact that it also provides nothing for the native wildlife? My opinion is a definite "NO!"

OTHER than the synthetic grass comment, the rest of the article had some pretty good advice. Check it out!

Takoma Area Green Homes and Gardens Tour, Oct 2

It stands to reason that those interested in adding solar power to their homes might also be interested in environmentally friendly gardening.

As part of the regional DC Solar Homes tour, the Takoma Area Green Homes and Garden Tourhas a handful of solar homes, but will have several additional homes and sites highlighting other green building features – from energy efficiency and conservation, to non-toxic and salvaged materials, to corn stoves, biodiesel furnaces and cars, to green roofs, rain gardens, storm water management and native landscaping.

Since many of these homes are within a 1-2 mile radius, it will be easy to see many of them by walking or bicycling all in one afternoon.

Download the guide for the DC Solar Homes tour at:

Website by Water Words That Work LLC