IMG 6897Keep that yard clean! This social imperative began in the 1800’s, when tidying the yard was considered an essential civic behavior, and continued through the 1900’s, when a vast swath of vibrant green lawn became evidence of one’s high social status. Now in the 21st century, however, perhaps it’s time we give this old social norm some new thought.

One big thing to reconsider is the idea that all the leaves that fall on the ground beneath a mature tree should be raked up and removed. As it turns out, this practice is actually not beneficial to our landscapes, for several reasons.

Since I have the audacity to call this blog “Good Landscapes” and to offer advice for creating such places, I think I’d better start out by defining what I mean by good.

”Questioning the social importance of lawn may lead to some interesting conversations and perhaps some heated disagreements, but this book is not the place for that debate. In contrast, the gargantuan amounts of energy consumed by the construction and care of lawns is clear to all, and beyond dispute. And that is the subject of this book.”