Saturday, September 04, 2010

Saturday scenes and scenery:
Retired lawn

I ran across this in a northern California suburb this week. It's a scene alright.

But seriously, retiring our lawns (and some golf courses, perhaps) is one of the responses most of us probably will be forced to make to global warming. California mountains will get less snow; we just won't be able to continue to surround every house with a patch of lush green grass.

A 2006 report from the Public Policy Institute of California spelled out the problem.

Landscaping currently accounts for at least half of all residential water demand, according to the report. Without new conservation efforts, the amount of water going to outdoor landscaping is predicted to rise by 1.2 million acre feet a year [by 2030] -- enough to serve roughly 4.8 million people. ...

... future shortages could be exacerbated by the dominance of single-family homes on relatively large lots in the state's fast growing interior -- particularly the greater Sacramento region, the San Joaquin Valley and the Inland Empire in Southern California -- where much of the future projected growth is expected. ...

Bob Drobny, manager of Zamora Sod Farm in Chico, which sells sod from Yuba City to the Oregon border, said his company has been doing strong business as the inland population has boomed. "You almost can't buy a house that isn't landscaped in the front and back with grass being an integral part of it," Drobny said.

Sometime down the line, we're going to have to retire some of those lawns. The mini-gnomes will remain optional, I certainly hope.


Darlene said...

Almost all lawns have been retired in Tucson. Gravel and colored rock are our landscaping choices. Not as clever as your photo, but practical.

I could do without the gnomes, also.

janinsanfran said...

Darlene -- that's great news about landscaping in Tucson. We haven't yet understood about lawns much here.

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