One homeowner teetered on the edge of choosing a lawn alternative when extensive weed treatment left them with barely any lawn.
“I think I’m done with grass,” said the Redditor in a post on r/NoLawns. “I purchased this home in Oct, 2018. … It needed some work done, especially in the yard. The yard was basically barely maintained aside from grass cutting and weed pulling where needed from previous owners.”
The original poster included links to several photos, including some “before” images of an extremely sparse, patchy lawn with extensive brown spots.
They couldn’t leave the lawn like that, so they turned to the experts. “I hired a company to raise it from the dead, so to speak,” they said. “I expected things to go south because they were killing off weeds, etc.”
Still, the “after” photos paint a bleak picture, with bare, almost sandy ground covering what appears to be a third of the yard. “There’s TONS of bare areas! Ouch,” the original poster said. “They also treated area yesterday and left me a placard stating “turf drought stressed, losing turf, need to keep as much possible.”
To restore the lawn, the company recommended watering for 30 to 40 minutes, two to three times a week — a difficult feat with no in-ground irrigation system. “I could easily be watering my lawn for two to three hours a day, two to three times a week. THAT’S BONKERS!” the Redditor said.
So they started looking at other options. “I started researching grass alternatives and found what’s known as ground cover. It’s quite interesting, especially the Ruschia Nana option.”
Even though they found many beautiful plants, they were worried they’d get a “no” from the one group that could stop them: their homeowners association. “I’m not sure how they would feel with something like Kurapia because it looks to[o] much like a ‘weed,’” they said.
Unfortunately, it’s true that HOAs don’t often allow alternatives to “grass grass grass,” as the OP put it. Thankfully, in some states, there are laws protecting the right to garden. In other states, you can sometimes change your HOA’s rules.
One commenter had suggestions for turning the most damaged section of the lawn into a garden bed. “Use your garden hose to outline a large bed using a gentle curve. … Order Chip Drop and use it to create the initial bed,” they suggested.
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