The companies that make, sell and apply lawn chemicals have been very successful at convincing Americans the only acceptable lawn is a treated lawn. Before you sign that contract to have your lawn treated, or run out to buy weed and feed, stop and gather information.
Read labels, request data sheets and do research online. You may be surprised to learn about the toxins being spread on your lawn, (even by companies with natural sounding names).
These pesticides and herbicides are carried into our homes on our shoes, and get into the air we breathe, our groundwater and eventually, our bodies. They contribute to cancer, Parkinson’s, asthma and other diseases. They also play a role in the decline of butterflies and honeybees that pollinate most of our food crops. This is due partly to the elimination of the insects’ food sources, like dandelions, clover and milkweed, and partly to their toxicity.
These are huge prices to pay to have our lawns look “pretty.” Many European countries and some American communities have already banned their use. I suggest we join them, and redefine what an acceptable yard looks like. We are stewards of the earth, and we need to do a better job of maintaining our planet for ourselves, our pets, wildlife and future generations. Remember when people thought tobacco smoke was OK … or when the government said DDT was OK? Let’s not wait until lawn chemicals become the next big “oops” for our health.
Cindy Maund, State College