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View Diary: Landscaping as if Water Mattered (253 comments)

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  •  crabgrass in the front yard? (2+ / 0-)
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    417els, kyril

    We are paying folks to get rid of crab grass and such stuff from our lawn, while it is clearly more robust that whatever it is that we have instead.  But it is kind of duty to have mowed lawn in the front of the house, and weeds are a definitely no-no.

    We keep weeds on our flower bed.  If you survive there, you survive anywhere.  Some decorative stuff is actually very robust. Same with wild flower patches in the backyard (mostly the pinky stuff from your picture, but ragweed too).

    I think that there are some leafy wines that nicely cover ground in a flat way that can be legitimately used without being hounded out of the neigborhood.  And we could keep turf as paths between the patches of such stuff.

    One thing I liked is when a hotel in some country kept grass short using sheep.  A cow is definitely a proper front-of-the-hotel animal, but a sheep is actually ok.  Do sheep produce methane?

    •  if you're in a place where you (9+ / 0-)

      have to have a lawn due to property owners' association rules or similar stuff, you might try using graywater for watering the lawn.

      Install a large water barrel e.g. a 40-gallon drum, next to the washing machine.  At the bottom of the barrel have a connector with a spigot you can turn off (in case you have to disconnect the hose from the barrel for some reason) and a hose.  The hose goes out through the wall to the yard where you can connect a sprinkler.  The sprinkler should be the simple type that just has a nozzle at the top, preferably with wide-ish holes so lint won't clog it.  

      Whenever you do the laundry, the water will go into the barrel and then out to the yard.  

      Yes, in some places this is illegal.  I've actually got legal graywater system designs (laundry to toilet) but if you need to water a yard, you can try this.  

      With a spigot on the barrel you can also turn it off, let the barrel fill up, use that for toilet flushes until the next time you're ready to wash clothes, and then release the rest of the water to the yard before doing the next load of laundry.  

    •  Don't know about sheep/methane, but I tend to (1+ / 0-)
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      doubt it's a problem.  Sheep leave pellets rather than cow 'piles' and they keep the grass 'mowed' evenly.  Goats, btw, eat any and everything & aren't the most trustworthy yard guys.

      A lot of interesting uses for sheep wool, too.

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Tue Apr 22, 2008 at 10:21:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  methane check (0+ / 0-)

        sheep and cows transform roughly 5% of the dry mass they consume into methane (actually, bacteria in their gut).

        Kangaroos are paragons of methane virtue among herbivores.  So we should have a bunch of kangaroos eating our grass.  But kangaroos are not tame and they can be dangerous -- they kick.  And they could eat more than just grass -- deer made short work of our lilies, for example.

        About watering, central PA is blessed with sufficient rainfall.  If there is no rain, we do not mow, grass slowly gets yellow and dormant, but it does not die.  Here lies insanity of fertilizing -- with some fertilizer and rain, the amount of grass clippings is enormous, something like cubic yard per quarter acre per week.  But without fertilizer, the grass does not look good.  But something is wrong in this picture.  

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