Editor’s note: ecoRI News and ConvergenceRI have partnered to create a positive consumer awareness campaign to educate the public about alternatives to toxic lawn chemicals and insecticides.
It’s springtime in southern New England. In addition to all those bright colors of daffodils and tulips in bloom and buds on the maple trees emerging in a natural pointillist canvas, there are those annoying harbingers of an increasingly toxic landscape: yellow and white flags sprouting up, warning of toxic chemicals applied to lawns, with their alluring promise of a greener future but the reality of a more silent spring. The lawn may be “greener” in color, but at what cost to the families, children and pets playing on those lawns? What about the irreparable harm caused in the poisoning of bees and other pollinators and beneficial creatures?
This heavy reliance on pesticides and fertilizers has turned neighborhood soil into de facto dumping grounds for lawn-care chemicals that threaten public health and the environment.
Switching to natural fertilizers typically requires changing application methods from constant chemical applications to aeration, compost additives and seeding. This method feeds the soil, which allows grass to grow deeper, and become heartier and less susceptible to weeds and pests.