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Changing Minds on Lawncare

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Hey everyone, I'm looking for some advice on how to approach neighbors who use harsh chemicals/ pesticides/ herbicides on their lawns.

I live in a suburban neighborhood in Savannah, Georgia. Lately it seems a bit overwhelming how many houses have signs posted from their lawn"care" companies warning you to keep your distance because of some nasty mystery poison that has been applied to their lawn. My initial instinct is to ring their doorbell and smack them in the face but I know that this will not help the issue. So I have been brainstorming ways to waken them up to the idea that there are ways to have a healthy lawn without sacrificing the health of themselves, their families, and the entire neighborhood. Of course I would want to do this in a way that the homeowners would not feel attacked and would be open to the suggestions. The most obvious idea I had is to create an informational flyer that can be left at the doors of these houses. These would briefly state some of the negative consequences of their current practice, and recommend a few tips from Paul's "Organic Lawn Care For the Cheap and Lazy" article. This would allow the homeowner to consider the information in a quick and non-confrontational way.

The problem I foresee with this idea is that these homeowners are paying someone else to take care of their lawn. They want a beautiful lawn but they don't want it to take up any of their time or worry. Suggesting to them that they mow high, or water deeply and less often might be totally meaningless to them. Would I be wasting my time doing this? Does anyone have a better suggestion?
 
pollinator
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Considering, as you noted, you're dealing with people who are paying a lawn service I think it might be more effective to find a local lawn service focused on organic lawn care and leave their business card, maybe along with a note about your concern for everyone's health.

For folks who are doing lawn care themselves I think your best bet is to make your own lawn as attractive as possible while using natural techniques and hope to engage folks in that way
 
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stephen lowe wrote:For folks who are doing lawn care themselves I think your best bet is to make your own lawn as attractive as possible while using natural techniques and hope to engage folks in that way



Yes I agree. About a year ago I had someone ask me about lawn care. I found it to be a wast of time because they did not like my answer. I when to using natural techniques on my lawn and it is greener than my neighbors. In my day job I maintain city parks and city property. Taller grass in my view looks healthier than short cut grass. In my view if you can create a beautiful lawn people will come by to ask how you did it.

Good Luck!
 
Daniel Spinelli
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food preservation medical herbs homestead
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Thank you for your response Stephen. I agree that leading by example is probably the best thing that I can do. There is certainly no shortage of lawn care companies that will simply mow the lawn, but a lot of people are convinced that they must also have them apply the toxic junk if they want to have a healthy lawn. Showing them that there is a better way is essential. Just like when I started using my yard to grow food, the next season several neighbors started growing their own gardens.
 
stephen lowe
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Daniel Spinelli wrote:Thank you for your response Stephen. I agree that leading by example is probably the best thing that I can do. There is certainly no shortage of lawn care companies that will simply mow the lawn, but a lot of people are convinced that they must also have them apply the toxic junk if they want to have a healthy lawn. Showing them that there is a better way is essential. Just like when I started using my yard to grow food, the next season several neighbors started growing their own gardens.


when I mentioned an 'organic' lawn care company I meant someone who will still be applying things, just things like compost tea, compost, rock dusts, etc.. This is a quick example that I found in my areaclean air lawn care
 
Daniel Spinelli
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stephen lowe wrote:This is a quick example that I found in my areaclean air lawn care



Wow I'm almost shocked that a lawn care company like that exists. Living in California certainly has its benefits.
 
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Keep in mind people have different perspectives. I think having a lawn is a waste. I like weeds. Organic or not I’d rather see native plants, permaculture, or an organic garden. So if I get my way no more lawnmowers!
 
stephen lowe
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Daniel Spinelli wrote:

stephen lowe wrote:This is a quick example that I found in my areaclean air lawn care



Wow I'm almost shocked that a lawn care company like that exists. Living in California certainly has its benefits.



Haha it certainly does. Is expect you could find something like that in any lager city. But I might have just loved in California too long at this point
 
Daniel Spinelli
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Dennis Mitchell wrote:Keep in mind people have different perspectives. I think having a lawn is a waste. I like weeds. Organic or not I’d rather see native plants, permaculture, or an organic garden. So if I get my way no more lawnmowers!



I mostly agree but there's nothing wrong with some space to bbq and hang out with the family.
 
Dennis Mitchell
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Daniel Spinelli wrote:

Dennis Mitchell wrote:Keep in mind people have different perspectives. I think having a lawn is a waste. I like weeds. Organic or not I’d rather see native plants, permaculture, or an organic garden. So if I get my way no more lawnmowers!



I mostly agree but there's nothing wrong with some space to bbq and hang out with the family.



Ya, I have one of those!
 
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