Last week Thursday was a gorgeous day here at Red Bucket Farm. The biddies and pullets were grazing in the chicken yard, bees were foraging and building comb, laundry was drying on the line in a brisk breeze, and I set out 8 brussels sprout plants and 14 tomato plants from the greenhouse into the raised beds. The whole farm felt happy and good.
Michael Pollan tells us in his book Second Nature that Americans spend $30 billion each year on lawn chemicals. The trend for large expanses of green lawns began after the Civil War when suburban areas were beginning to develop. The idea was that green lawns would unify a neighborhood. Large expanses of open lawn were a reaction to the privately walled gardens of England. Common folks still had no grass with a few chickens and a vegetable garden, but the wealthy suburbs had grass lawns.
I've made a few signs to try to protect my urban farm from airborne chemicals. Meanwhile, I'm planning to plant clover in the bare spots of my yard. Clover is good for the bees and adds nitrogen to the soil. Remember sitting in the lawn on hot summer days looking for that lucky four leaf clover? Or picking a bouquet of beautiful yellow dandelions to bring home to mom?