Two Bur Oaks and a Crawdad

A group of swamp white oaks Healthy soil is important, but for whom?  In the Garden  The young bur oak would not be kept down. Yet again it revealed itself among the standing dead stalks of a large patch of purple bee balm, a good three feet tall and leafing out. In spring, a bur oak’s leaves look like sharp-edged, glossy cutouts. They are not green, but shade delicately among soft corals, tans and pinks. The green comes a bit later, like a slow-motion wave gently pervading each leathery leaf. The question, as it had been for several years, was what to do with this young newcomer to the garden.  About ten feet away and across the walk from house to garage stands a second bur oak that I’d started from an acorn some twelve years ago. I’ve enjoyed watching it grow its first sets of true leaves, become large enough to attract birds and then mature enough to bear acorns. This winter I limbed it up three feet from the ground, mainly to give the sedges and wild geraniums growing underneath a

Lawncare Resources On the Web

No chemical lawn inputs, please
Ecological lawncare advice-givers and activist groups abound on the web. While preparing my post "The Polyculture Lawn," I discovered several helpful websites which I recommend for those interested in learning more about ecological lawns.

Because they are national in scope, a good understanding of your own local conditions is necessary before taking their advice. In addition, people interested in native-plant-centric gardens (in my opinion the best kind), should be aware that many plants--especially groundcovers--suggested as alternatives to turfgrass are exotics, and even invasive. That being said, go have a look.
  • The Lawn Reform Coalition at lawnreform.org offers many suggestions and pictures.
  • Safe Lawns at safelawns.org. News and information, and you can order "safe lawn" signs for your turf.

Related Posts:
Pollinator Garden Resources on the Web
The Polyculture Lawn: A Primer
Once in a Lifetime: This is Not My Beautiful Lawn

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