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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Don't make us mow native plants

To the Editor:

Why is a mowed lawn a sign of maintaining your property?

Most people use gasoline-powered mower. Gasoline is a non-renewable resource, and mowers pollute more than cars. How is generating noise and air pollution being a "good neighbor"?

Beauty comes in many forms. Some find a mowed lawn beautiful. Others prefer an abundance of flowers and dancing grasses. Why is one acceptable and not the other? Why cut the grass just as it gets tall enough to dance in the wind?

I much prefer a kinetic sculpture over the static carpet look.

Lawns are not democratic. The European gentry had huge estates where they pastured their animals. They also had gardeners to manicure the grounds.

In contrast, I find the prairie garden to be much more in tune with America. Here, plants with different needs and growth patterns grow closely together.

Some grow deep and flower early, some wait until summer, and others provide a finale in the fall. Some roots are shallow, others deep. There are checks and balances, just as in our governmental system. Dry years favor some plants and others will do better in the wet years.

These diverse prairie plants created the great soils of DeKalb County. I take pride in growing them.

Some people fly American flags, I plant American plants. It is the little bit of America you can preserve yourself.

Besides, where exactly do you expect wildlife to go? Not a single bird will nest in a cornfield. I like to eat as well as the next person, so I'm happy with farms producing food, but they aren't natural areas.

Yes, there is a tiny bit of wild space in our forest preserves, but that wild space is a small fraction of the county. A wild yard can be a refuge for a butterfly. This kind of planting is especially important given the loss of butterfly habitat.

Karen Matz


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