My Flowery Mead

  • Post published:02/24/2010
  • Post comments:9 Comments
My Flowery Mead

Now you know why I chose the name commonweeder. I love common weeds. Otherwise known as wild flowers. In some circles.  I call this wildflower garden my flowery mead. Others may call it my lawn.

Lawns have become controversial because they can take a toll on the environment.  Herbicides and pesticides can runoff into streams and other waterways causing pollution and killing wildlife. Many people water their lawns when the weather is hot and dry, using that precious resource, water.  Many people (like me, or more specifically my husband) use power mowers that use gas and pollute the air.

There are various ways to cut down on this environmental toll. We never use chemical fertilizer. My husband thinks the grass grows quite fast enough, thank you very much.  I do lime the lawn periodically. That make nutrients available to all the plants in the lawn. I want to encourage the microbial and animal life in my lawn, not kill it.

We never water the lawn. Should it go dormant and brown, it will green up again when the rains come.

We mow as infrequently as possible. My husband and I do have different opinions about that.

We are trying to eliminate lawn. Some lawn has been turned into The Lawn Beds. The Daylily Bank, The Rose Bank and The Early Garden are in process. I’m also removing the grass from a wide strip next to the road and planting hydrangeas and barren strawberry ground cover.

This is planning season. There are many ways to create a sustainable lawn and many resources to help you do this. Paul Tukey has written The Organic Lawn Care Manual, available and bookstores and libraries. You can also log in to is SafeLawns website.

The Lawn Reform website also has advice and resources. You’ll see some of the best and most influential gardeners have joined this movement. Your lawn can be beautiful – and healthy for you and the environment.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Carol

    I love your flowery mead Pat! Bees and butterflies do too . . . so you are only encouraging wildlife with your ‘common weeds’ or wild flowers. Several mowings a year keeps the flowers coming back I find. ;>)

  2. Cyndy

    I’ve been eliminating more and more lawn too, mostly because I want other things to look at. Think I’ll always have a little green grass to make the other plants look good though 🙂

  3. Flowery Mead sounds so much nicer than lawn, doesn’t it. I am trying to get rid of my lawn as well, cutting it takes too much time out of the very short weekend I have at Kilbourne Grove.

  4. Pat

    Carol – We do have lots of butterflies, but I was alarmed to see very few bees last year.
    Cyndy – I think some lawn is beautiful. Very restful. And good for croquet.
    Deborah – Lawn mowing is one of those chores that takes altogether too much gardening time. Ask my husband.

  5. susan harris

    great post! On behalf of the Lawn Reformers, thanks for the mention. We’ll keep the resources updated as this topic heats up even more – with pesticides being banned left and right and water restrictions becoming standard.

  6. Garden Junkie

    I’ve also been systematically removing lawn and also encourage my clients to think beyond the typical swath of green. Thanks for providing a couple of resources I can point them too. My husband’s only too happy to let me get rid of grass – less mowing! And I just can’t stand watering it – like you, Pat, I let it go dormant, although I don’t think the neighbors are too pleased about that.

  7. Pat

    Susan – I know we can always count on you and the Lawn Reformers to keep us up to date. Thank you.
    Garden Junkie – Fortunately for my neighbors, they are too far away to invite comparisons. The benefit of living in ‘deep country’. Actually all us Heathans get our water from wells or springs and are careful about water usage.

  8. Rose

    I like this name, flowery mead, so much better–it sounds very poetic! I don’t know if you saw my post from last Monday, but I also posted some weeds/wildflowers from around our farm last summer. It’s a constant battle to keep up with the weeds, but I’ve learned to appreciate the beauty of many of them. And in many cases the pollinators and wildlife love them.

  9. Pat

    Rose – I’ll go back and check your post, but I have to say I don’t mind most of the ‘weeds’ in my lawn, it’s when they are in the flower and vegetable beds that I object.

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