Making your green spaces more sustainable

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The manicured lawn. Golf green. Americans have obsessed with traditional grass for decade upon decade and finally — finally? Lawns have fallen out of favor.

Realtor.com’s Geraldine Campbell says, “Not only is lawn maintenance costly, but it also comes with an environmental toll that an increasing number of homeowners aren’t comfortable with.” She adds that the biggest culprits are excessive water use (nearly 9 billion gallons a day are used for landscape irrigation, according to the EPA) and a significant carbon cost from gas-powered mowers and leaf-blowers are a turn-off for existing homeowners and prospective buyers.

An alternative to lawns? One is to create a rain garden. A recessed area planted with native plants, rain gardens are relatively low maintenance options that increase rain runoff retention, promote wildlife, and discourage mosquitos. It doesn’t get much better than that. “The trickiest part about creating a rain garden—is figuring out where to put it,” says Campbell. “Ideally, you want it to be at least 10 feet from the foundation of your house and 25 feet from your septic systems, and avoid areas that get too swampy.”

Another is to plan an edible garden — another eco-friendly option for your front or back yard. “On the plus side, they’re relatively affordable to install; on the other hand, they require quite a bit of work to keep them going—and a neglected garden can easily become an eyesore,” says Campbell. “Still, if you have a green thumb, enjoy spending time outside, and enjoy fresh fruits, veggies, and herbs, it’s a no-brainer.”

Can’t rid yourself of the love of green lawns? There is always turf, or faux grass. “Synthetic lawns have come a long way since Astroturf,” says Campbell. “These days, you can find options that look shockingly real (and always just-mowed). They aren’t necessarily better for the environment—but they can be a step in the right direction if you choose faux grass that’s made from sustainable materials (instead of plastic and rubber).” A caveat: this is a hefty investment.

If you’re not allergic to bees, consider clover. Once considered a landscape nuisance, clover is now a desirable substitute for traditional turf. “This hardy ground cover is resistant to drought, disease, and pests, requiring little maintenance,” says Campbell. “It also encourages pollinators (including bees), improves soil health, and stays green even when it’s hot out. If you’re not ready to go all-in, you can try using clover in certain areas of your lawn.”

And last but not least, you can shrink the lawn surface in favor of hardscape — patios, decks, outdoor kitchens, breezy living rooms and paved pathways. No mowing, watering, or fertilizing. Just sit back and enjoy that cigar on a warm summer night.

Realtor, TBWS


All information furnished has been forwarded to you and is provided by thetbwsgroup only for informational purposes. Forecasting shall be considered as events which may be expected but not guaranteed. Neither the forwarding party and/or company nor thetbwsgroup assume any responsibility to any person who relies on information or forecasting contained in this report and disclaims all liability in respect to decisions or actions, or lack thereof based on any or all of the contents of this report.

Paramount Residential Mortgage Group
Corporate NMLS ID:  75243
Privacy Policy:  https://www.prmg.net/privacy-policy/

Brian Voytko

Mortgage Advisor

NMLS: #437292

The Mortgage Whiz

Company NMLS: 338923

Cell: 215-407-3832

Email: BVoytko@PRMG.net

Web: http://www.mtgwhiz.com

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Brian Voytko

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Mortgage Advisor

NMLS: #437292

Cell: 215-407-3832


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