What’s going on here?
The Eden Project in Cornwall has come under fire from environmental campaigners for laying an artificial lawn in a children’s play area.
What does this mean?
The UK’s well-known eco tourism attraction may have decided that plastic grass is a practical solution for its needs. But the problem here is more about the signal it sends.
The demand for artificial lawns has been growing for convenience and aesthetics. Artificial lawns meet the cultural requirements of ‘good lawns’ at the expense of nature. Their popularity shows just how disconnected we have become from the natural world.
Green washing is rife in the fake grass world. A quick internet search about the environmental impacts of artificial grass will return a number of suppliers shouting about the water and energy saving benefits of a fake lawn. All while the devastating impacts to wildlife and soil degradation get swept under the green-plastic-outdoor-carpet.
Why should we care?
Last week Nathan inspired us to lock away the lawnmower and let nature take over for #NoMowMay.
This week, while we watch the wild flowers begin to bloom, let’s take it a bit further and ask: why have a manicured lawn at all?
It is a societal statement stemming from 17th century Europe. The fashion has spread across the globe often with disregard for the local climate conditions. Seeing lush lawns in water stressed and desert regions spring to mind!
In her book Wilding, Isabella Tree explores how giving her farmland back to nature boosted biodiversity. If you have any outdoor space, maybe leave the garden tools in the shed this summer and give nature a hand with some of your own rewilding. Check out the section below for some useful links.