Lawn Looking Bad Over Winter?

Ditching a lawn can be a great idea – but what if you’re not allowed to do so?

Are you used to your lawn turning into a muddy mess over the winter months? Fed up of bare patches and weeds in spring? There is a simple solution – get rid of that lawn and replace it with a more eco-friendly, vibrant and biodiverse planting scheme that looks good year round.

Lawn care is a subject which seems to occupy so many gardeners so much of the time. But as I have said before on this site, and elsewhere, neat, manicured lawns are not the be all and end all. In fact, in most cases, they are not desirable at all.

I appreciate that not everyone is free to do with their lawn as they will. HOAs and other authorities sometimes have mowing ordnances, and other rules. These regulations keep lawns in place, and sometimes prevent sustainable homeowners from doing what they want to do.

Where I live, I find it strange to think that outside influences can tell you when you can and cannot mow, and which plants (other than problem invasive plants of course) you can have in your garden. But I have worked with several clients who have encountered problems of this kind.

Someone that I know was growing a beautiful flax bed in her front yard, and was told to ‘get rid of the tall weeds’. Someone else was told to mow more often when ‘wilding’ an area of lawn to create a wildlife friendly garden.

It is easy to get frustrated if other people do not appreciate the benefits of sustainable gardening, and instead insist that neat, herbicide-ridden ‘desert’ lawns, devoid of most life, are maintained.

We need to get rid of the misconception that a wild and natural garden, or an abundant permaculture scheme cannot be neat, tidy and attractive. Though many of us love a wilder look – there is a middle way.

If you are having problems with neighbours, HOAs or other authorities who do not understand permaculture ideas – getting a good design and taking the time to explain what you would like to do can make a difference. Often, all it takes is a clear and friendly conversation to get others on side.

So if you feel that you have to have a lawn because of ‘the regulations’ – get in touch. I may be able to create a persuasive design, help you start a constructive conversation, get people on side, and perhaps make your neighbourhood a better place – a place where you don’t have to worry about unsightly and problematic lawns ever again.

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