Monday, April 6, 2009

The Lawn Dilemma

We're facing a lawn dilemma at our house. Our back lawn never really had a chance. It was put down on top of terrible "soil" and even with liberal application of water, the stuff never really fulfilled its lawn destiny. Mostly, it served as a brownish-green carpet, useful for keeping mud off of our shoes. But it was never a fun place for the kids to play or for to camp out at night in the tent.

No, our patch of prickly, mostly dead grass was a sorry sight indeed.

And so when we removed a large planting bed in order to put in the chicken coop, we just shoveled the dirt onto the lawn. Heck, we stopped watering it over a year ago.

Now, we've got a giant patch of brown, dead, lifeless grass, and a huge pile of dirt on top of it.

The dirt has to go, it's spent too much time in contact with pressure treated wood and things had a hard time growing in it anyway. Since we're getting rid of the dirt, we may as well get rid of the lawn and finally decide to do something in the back yard.

And that's the dilemma.

Should we replace the entire lawn? That's a lot of water to use up, and it's hardly considered an environmentally friendly decision. There are lots of "food not lawn" movements and voices everywhere you look these days.

But we would like a place to be comfortable in our own back yard, and we already do have some garden space set aside.

Will we replace only part of the lawn? A compromise where we still have some room for "picnics and tent sleep outs" but also an increase in garden space?

Perhaps we should tear it all out?

The chickens love the lawn just the way it is, giant dirt pile and all. Of course, having a giant lawn would mean that we'd have to look out for chicken poo every time we wanted to use the lawn. The chickens "free range" during the day, sometimes as much as 8 - 10 hours. That's a lot of poop.

We could make a smaller lawn and somehow fence it off from the birds...

So many options. I'm having a hard time giving up the entire lawn, and the kids are torn too.

What do you think? Have any interesting stories about the compromise between green lawn and just plain green?

One thing is for certain, though. I'll be shoveling that pile of dirt today and tomorrow.

No comments:

Post a Comment