Meadowscaping, all-native plantings, low-mow lawns, vegetated sidewalk strips, and waterside buffers have become more common. Many garden clubs and community groups promote these approaches as they work toward better urban ecology. Some private homeowners adopt them as well. In some cases, municipalities incentivize or even mandate these changes.
Yet, others find these landscape styles unacceptable and, sometimes, offensive. Complaints include informal appearances, plants that are too tall, an unkempt look, fear of ticks and weeds—and concern about curb appeal and real estate value. New landscape forms sometimes lead to neighborhood disagreements, blight citations, court orders, and other battles.
Is the problem one of the embattled traditions, two cultures, differing expectations, or fundamental design problems?
Sponsored by Essex, CT, Garden Club and Essex Land Trust for their members.