Smart Yard: 60-Minute Lawn Care

Smart Yard: 60-Minute Lawn Care

by Jeff Ball, Liz Ball

Deals with all aspects of ecological lawn management in the home landscape.See more details below


Deals with all aspects of ecological lawn management in the home landscape.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Yardeners''-ordinary homeowners caring for lawns and gardens-dream of a low-maintenance lawn without weeds or pests that requires infrequent mowing or watering. The authors-he's the gardening expert for NBC's Today and she is a garden writer-contend that this dream is a very real possibility, demanding ``significant effort in the first year or two,'' after which the lawn will begin to take care of itself. This non-technical and clearly written guide considers, specifically, the ``northern'' or ``cool weather'' grasses, those comprising lawns from Maine to North Carolina and west to the Dakotas as well as the Pacific Northwest. After a discussion of effective techniques for general lawn care, the Balls take on compaction problems, soil rebuilding, drainage and re-seeding; a final section tackles insect and animal pests and grass diseases. While this is not a guide to an entirely organic yard-the authors describe themselves as ``reluctant and cautious users of pesticides''-it does offer choices. Advice for weeds ranges from hand-pulling to herbicidal spot-treatment to complete starting over; solutions for insect pests include both beneficial nematodes and insecticidal soaps. (Mar.)
Library Journal
In recent years, environmentalists, gardeners, and harried homeowners have begun to question the validity of the American lawn as the major feature of most landscapes. As traditionally tended, a lawn in most parts of the country demands a great deal of time, money, and effort to maintain. These two books offer greatly differing strategies for handling this problem. The Balls (Yardening, LJ 12/91) recognize that most people want to keep their grassy lawns but with a lot less effort. Readers of Smart Yard will quickly realize that the subtitle's 60-minutes-per-week claim will only take effect a year or more after they make the initial investment in time and effort to renew or replace their lawn by improving the soil, choosing appropriate grass varieties, aerating and dethatching, eliminating most herbicides and pesticides, and assuring frequent but "tall" mowing that leaves the grass around two inches high. The result will be a healthier lawn that will resist drought, diseases, and pests and ultimately demand less pampering. In contrast, Daniels explains how and why to replace turfgrass with other plants to create an entirely new kind of lawn. Examples include prairie and native grass lawns, meadows, moss lawns and woodlands, ground covers, and front-yard gardens. Since many antilawn mavericks have gotten into trouble because of local ordinances and homeowners' associations, Daniels (a former editor of Organic Gardening) includes a chapter on how to deal with such opposition. The Wild Lawn Handbook will find a much smaller audience than the more mainstream Smart Yard, but it gathers together a great deal of specific, practical information that may be hard to find elsewhere, as well as examples of successfully installed alternative lawns. Both books are highly recommended for most gardening collections.Beth Clewis, Prince William P.L., Va.

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Product Details

Fulcrum Publishing
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
9 Years

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