Have you ever asked yourself, "Why do I have grass?" If I want it to look good . . . I have to mow it, fertilize it, water it and weed it. At least in America there is a whole litany of social pressure and indoctrination that grass is just what we do as a home owner who has "pride" in his or her yard. There has to be a better way. I have a thought. I know "scarey" right?
Ya know that damned clover that you can't ever seem to get rid of in your pristine lawn, or even in your less than pristine lawn. Well, what if I suggested that it may be the answer to your low maintenance, no watering, no weeding, no fertilizing, pristine landscape, prayers? You would rightfully think, "this blogger's sun may have set for the last time. His elevator doesn't go to the top, and his lawn mower is probably broken and he doesn't want to buy another one." And while all of those things may be true, that is not the motivation for my landscape renovation, restoration and emancipation, otherwise known as "nuke the lawn project".
I honestly have a real concern about the ever growing human population on our planet and the need to grow more food in the next 40 years than we have in the last 500 because of that growth. So I have decided I would rather eat food than grow grass, "like lawn type (grass) to be clear". Lol
I have to ask myself, what is so important about grass? It doesn't feed my family. It doesn't provide shelter. It is a drain on our potable water supply. It is a drain on my bank account and what if there were something, some astonishing way to release myself from the demand of mowing, the time consumption of buying and applying fertilizer, weekly watering and the laborious task of weeding. Okay Thomason cut to the chase! Get me out of this ridiculous, tail chasing, perpetuous, bamboo chutes under the fingernail activity. What is the answer?.
Remember the "damned clover"? Repeat after me, "clover is our friend!"
What if I told you you can seed clover right into your existing grass and initially you will have to water, but in 6 weeks you can turn off the water hose, turn off the mower, turn off the fertilizer spreader and enjoy a nice lush green clover lawn all summer long. Wait . . . how many hours did you just gain to go golfing, spend time with family and friends. You almost forgot how much you loved fishing. The amount of time and money you have been spending to support that stupid lawn has been a life robber.
"So", you say, "why don't we have to fertilize any more?" The answer is clover is a very interesting ground cover in that it's a legume and it is what is called nitrogen fixing. What that means is it has the ability to pull nitrogen out of the air and introduce it to the soil.
Do you remember the last time you bought fertilizer and on the label it has a sort of active ingredients section labeled N - P - K? NPK stands for nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. The most important, plant available food of these three is the nitrogen so you can see how the clover takes care of that. If the rest of your soil biology is in decent shape it will take care of itself. A simple light application of compost in the spring or fall will insure that the soil biology remains healthy. As far as the weeds are concerned, when you are no longer mowing your lawn the clover / lawn combination will grow to somewhere between 4 and 8 inches and have a very soft, lofty look to it. With the plant available nitrogen from the clover both the grass and clover will be very dense. The vast majority of weeds will be choked out by the clover and grass. You owe it to yourself. <Go with clover.>
Check back in next week to hear why using weed and feed products and pesticides are so detrimental to our planet and some info on insuring healthy soil biology.