Turf is top topic in my town’s parade

You've seen the partying spectators for my town's July 4th Parade.  Now for the turf- and gardening-related floats and people IN the parade. This group of reel-mowers have been at it for 15 or so years now, way ahead of the rest of the Lawn Reform movement.  I believe their official name includes the term […]

Read more in: Gardening on the Planet, Lawn Reform
Posted by on July 19, 2011 at 8:06 am   This post has 7 responses.

Dead trees! Killer compost! Thanks to DuPont and their herbicide Imprelis.

Boy, this sounds familiar.  A new chemical that's claimed to safely kill dandelions and other turfgrass weeds turns out to be not safe at all.  This time the unintended consequence is killing nearby trees.  We heard from Mother Earth News about it, asking us to spread the word that:...

Read more in: Lawn Reform, What's Happening
Posted by on July 19, 2011 at 4:46 am   This post has 9 responses.

This Just In: Oak Park, MI Front Yard Veg Garden Case Dismissed

According to Julie Bass' blog, the case against her has been dropped. As you know, local city officials were giving her grief for putting raised beds in the front yard, the objecting being that her "plant material" was not "suitable."  I guess they wised up.  I'd like to think...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on July 14, 2011 at 1:20 pm   This post has 10 responses.

This Just In.

Dear Gardener’s Supply Co. affiliate: Due to business reasons connected with the new online tax law in California, we have chosen to remove all California affiliates, effective July 1st, 2010.  We regret having to do this and hope that the law may be struck down in the future so...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on June 30, 2011 at 4:14 pm   This post has 20 responses.

Reefer madness at Scotts Miracle-Gro

You'd think that our friends at S M-G were doing pretty well with their $2.9 billion of sales, but according to stories posted last week at a number of news sites, including here, it's not enough. They're coming for the stoners. Here's Chief Executive Jim Hagedorn: “I want to...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on June 20, 2011 at 11:33 am   This post has 9 responses.

The Article You Will Never Read in a Beauty Magazine

Dear Reader, We, the editors of Beauty, Inc., your monthly guide to beauty, fashion, and the path to a better you, have some surprising news to share in this, our latest and probably last issue.  This is going to blow your mind, so settle into a comfortable chair, take...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy, Taking Your Gardening Dollar
Posted by on June 1, 2011 at 4:01 am   This post has 28 responses.

Exploding Watermelons! Bt in Your Bloodstream! This Week in Horrifying Ag News

Oh, the fun just never stops!  First, this just in from China–overuse of a growth chemical called forchlorfenuron causes watermelons to explode in the fields.  Which is a bummer for the farmers, but also brings up a larger question:  if they're applying too much of this stuff, and using...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on May 18, 2011 at 11:20 am   This post has 9 responses.

Native vs. invasive once again—it’s Tallamy’s turn

I am not a purist and I don't expect many other people will be either. I think taking the hard line and insisting on all natives will go a long way toward killing the movement.—Doug Tallamy, Garden Rant interview, 12/12/07 Mild-mannered Doug Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home, is...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on April 11, 2011 at 4:32 am   This post has 25 responses.

Research on the Impact of Invasives may Surprise You

The importance of eliminating invasive plants, which has long been considered settled dogma, is unsettling itself before our very eyes.  Harvard's Peter del Tredici is making waves among scientists and designers, though maybe not yet with ecologists, with his book Wild Urban Plants, briefly reviewed here.   He breaks the...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on March 7, 2011 at 5:55 am   This post has 33 responses.

We read the gardening news

They might not be a good choice for street containers like this one. Black is the new petunia I saw the black and green ones everywhere last summer, but now Black Velvet is the big buzz. Black plants are tough. You want to like them, but a plant is...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on February 22, 2011 at 5:00 am   This post has 10 responses.

About.com’s Lawn Care Advice

Amy's "Dear eHow: Please Go Away" last week got a bit of attention, including comments from some writers for About.com.  They took exception to it being lumped in with eHow and the other "content mills" and claimed that About.com's writers "are carefully vetted and truly domain experts."  And this...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on January 20, 2011 at 4:39 am   This post has 30 responses.

Lawn Reform Blog is Born!

 Standard-issue "lawn care" information is OUT.  Lawn reform information is not only IN, it's important, dammit.  So 15 months ago the Lawn Reform Coalition launched a website filled with alternatives to the conventional, overly perfect and supersized American lawn.  Next came our Facebook page, which quickly grew to over...

Read more in: Lawn Reform
Posted by on January 17, 2011 at 3:30 am   This post has 10 responses.

An Appalling Waste of Horticultural And Scientific Talent? You Betcha

Turf without management I hate to be shockable at 50–it's unseemly–but I was doing some research yesterday and was shocked to learn that Colorado State University has an entire degree program devoted to "turf management." This program is taught by actual Ph.D.s.  It leads to glorious management careers, the...

Read more in: Gardening on the Planet, Lawn Reform, Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on January 6, 2011 at 4:41 am   This post has 50 responses.

The rants that made you rant, part I

Comments are not the only indication of a good post. Sometimes a great post will have no comments at all. But we do like to see readers get fired up about issues and discuss them with each other (not just agree or disagree with the post itself). Here are...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 31, 2010 at 5:00 am   This post has 5 responses.

Fake Grass: Dangerous, Deadly, or Just Depressing?

A new study of artificial turf made from recycled rubber tires shows that it does not, as far as anyone can tell, harbor dangerous bacteria or emit harmful fumes.  It does, however, cause more skin abrasions. It also does not smell like fresh-cut grass, ever, and it does not...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 29, 2010 at 8:10 am   This post has 19 responses.

Dangerous safety? I don’t think so.

Here’s my favorite provision of S-510, otherwise known as the Food Safety Modernization Act, and just approved unanimously by the Senate Sunday: it allows the FDA to recall foods linked to illness. We would no longer have to depend on the kindness of corporations to do the right thing...

Read more in: Eat This, Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 21, 2010 at 5:00 am   This post has 10 responses.

Here’s a EPA/clothianidin/bee update

Just go over to our friend Jeff Gillman's post at The Garden Professors. He and other scientists seem skeptical that clothianidin is the culprit behind colony collapse disorder, but that doesn't make the EPA's role in allowing this chemical to be widely used without sufficient testing any less reprehensible....

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 18, 2010 at 1:03 pm   This post has 4 responses.

How Does “Pesticide Residue Free” Sound?

So this is interesting.  Scientific Certification Systems has a "pesticide residue free" certification program that either organic or non-organic growers can participate in. The idea is that no matter how you grow your food, as long as it's free of residues when it goes to market, it will be...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 16, 2010 at 4:47 am   This post has 19 responses.

Bayer/EPA memo: Better living through poison

We’ve all been hearing about a leaked EPA memo that appeared a few days ago, linking colony collapse disorder to Bayer CropScience and the pesticide clothianidin, which the company wants to use on mustard seed and cotton. This pesticide attacks the nervous system of insects; it is used to...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy, Taking Your Gardening Dollar
Posted by on December 14, 2010 at 4:55 am   This post has 15 responses.

The Azalea Story Gets Juicier

Writer Joel Lerner has added another twist to the mystery of the Plan to Kill Beloved Azaleas at the National Arboretum (the gardening world around DC has talked about nothing else for days now).  Click here to read Joel's passionate defense of the Arboretum's azaleas and boxwoods, at the...

Read more in: Ministry of Controversy
Posted by on December 11, 2010 at 10:40 am   This post has 4 responses.
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