by Maryann Ridini Spencer, VC Style
Lawn, as defined in the dictionary, is an “area of aesthetic and recreational land planted with grass and other durable plants.”
It’s believed that the concept of “the lawn” developed in medieval times for the purpose of communal grazing of livestock. At this time, lawns were similar to pastures or fields. To tend to these lawns, laborers used scything and shearing. Sheep and livestock grazing also maintained the lands or lawns.
Later, in Tudor and Elizabethan times, the lawn garden became a place for walkways and social areas. And by the 17th century, the Jacobean epoch of gardening began and the “English” lawn became a symbol of status and gentry. While at first lawns were primarily made up of meadow plants, by the Victorian era, a wider variety of perennials were available as were elaborate sculptures and water features. In the 19th century, with the advent of sprinkler technology and the lawn mower, lawns and gardens were also affordable to the masses.
Today, unlike hundreds of years ago, we are armed with the knowledge about the importance of conserving our precious, natural resources – especially our valuable water. Low maintenance and drought tolerant grass and native plant replacements are the wise sustainable choices. Some wonderful native plant choices might include White Sage, California Fuchsia, California Lilac, California Poppy any variety of succulents, to name only a few. The variety and beauty of “Ocean Friendly” gardens is on the rise. So, why not choose beauty and sustainability? For information on how you can create the Ocean Friendly (or Native) Garden of your dreams, talk to your local nursery!