Lawn & Garden

July 10, 2022

We have had a garden for many years, some years more ambitious than others. This is one of the less ambitious years. We have a few vegetables - tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach and hot peppers. And those are in various sized containers. Most of the in-ground garden itself we let go wild, with a large wildflower patch and a half-dozen sunflowers. We also have two small apple trees that are just beginning to bear fruit.

My wife particularly enjoys having animals in the yard, so we have bird feeders that attract both birds and squirrels. Later in the summer the squirrels love scaling the sunflower stalks and eating the seeds. Various neighborhood cats visit us daily and get a treat, and we have a skunk this year who helped get rid of our grubs. We've had a marmot visit in past years, but he doesn't seem to be around this year. Still plenty of activity.

As you can imagine, our lawn can not in any way be considered the ideal neighborhood lawn, what with skunk-dug holes and a patchwork of grass, clover, wildflowers and dandelions. But it is damned easy to maintain, and doesn't need any pesticides or even a lot of water. The bees also like it. Unfortunately one of our neighbors is the stereotypical obsessive lawn guy, with the perfectly manicured, lush green lawn that requires constant water, chemicals and mowing. He put up a fence two years ago after demanding we chemically treat our grubs, and we told him no. Out of sight, out of mind.

We do still mow the lawn, although we started late this year to give the dandelions time to bloom for the bees and other pollinating insects. Our town and many others in the area specifically urged residents not to mow their lawns in May and to allow the dandelions to grow unhindered just for this reason. This seems to be a thing lately, which we are glad for. Hopefully some day soon the "perfect" suburban lawn will be a footnote in the history books.

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