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It's time to rethink your lawn and lawn care

While lawns typically comprise at least some part of the landscape, for aesthetic reasons or recreational purposes, they  require large amounts of water and present environmental challenges.  Taking a few measures with our lawns can produce meaningful positive results when it comes to health and sustainability.

Steps to a More Sustainable Lawn

The conventional way of maintaining our lawns results in environmental and health hazards. Traditional lawn care requires large amounts of water and chemicals and releases pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions. However, using electric lawn equipment and transitioning to more sustainable practices makes a significant difference and helps mitigate the impact of climate change.

Attempt to water less often. Not only will this conserve water, but if you have a well or an irrigation system, it will also use less electricity.

Mow every other week, or only when the grass is high, around 4 inches. Mowing higher contributes to root growth, making for healthier, more drought tolerant grass and establishing a grub tolerant lawn. It also helps to control weeds by shading the soil surface.

Dull lawnmower blades will leave rough edges and cause your grass to need more water. As a bonus: sharper blades can reduce fuel consumption by up to 30 per cent.

Mulching leaves and grass clippings into the lawn adds nutrients to the soil and creates a better soil structure, which improves drainage and encourages deep roots. This is better for the plant and better for carbon storage.

Monocultural lawns require more resources to protect from pests, diseases and drought and they provide little to no food for wildlife. Instead, use seed mixes adapted to your lawn’s soil and climate conditions and consider adding low flowering native plants like pussytoes, violets or clover.

There are many alternatives to lawn. Consider transitioning a part of your lawn to: native grasses; native trees and shrubs; ground covers; a flowering meadow; a food garden; a xeriscape or a rain garden. Not only are these beautiful and functional alternatives, they also help mitigate climate change.