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The US has more area dedicated to lawns than it does to any single farm crop – about 50 thousand square miles. That’s about 32 million acres, or an amount of land roughly 38% of the size of all land managed by the National Park Service.

6 Responses to “Fun Facts to Know and Tell: Lawns Edition”

  1. That’s a lot of grass to mow.

  2. chuck martel says:

    It’s absolutely nutso. These gigantic wastes of space, which are seldom used for anything at all, would be better devoted to grazing sheep, raising rutabagas or just about anything else. It’s a bizarre phenomenon that probably originated, like so many other things (ornate furniture and silverware, for instance) in ancien regime France, was adopted by English with a cultural inferiority complex, and made it’s way to the US as an accompaniment to the large estates nouveau riche Americans established. Then everybody in single family housing had to accept the responsibility of seeding and mowing a lawn that became possible with increased wealth and leisure time and required by law.

  3. Well, I agree that lawns are silly. I remember back in 1966 or so TV horror host Ernie Anderson (“Ghoulardi”) taking on the city of Parma, Ohio, over his right not to mow his lawn. He lost. More recently, in Ann Arbor about 2008 or ’10, one citizen attempted to argue that his weeds were a natural habitat. He lost. So, we all must mow our lawns.

    That said, it remains that privacy and social space are the hallmarks of civilized societies: good fences make good neighbors.

    And, I believe the point here is that – The Ghoul and his latter day knifs aside – you seldom see lawn lacking for what they need. Private spaces, nicely maintained, at private expense: it is a lesson.

  4. Michael says:

    What’s funny is that our local government allows certain areas of the park not to be cut to replicate the natural environment, although we the citizens get fined.

  5. Rock lawns are legal in dry climates but I’ve not seen them in other areas….

  6. Rod says:

    Nearby Solebury Township resident Barry Freed (AKA Abbie Hoffman) used to deplore golf courses as a bourgeois waste of land, too. That was before Barry Obama came along and needed a new golf course to play every week.

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