NaturaLawn of America

This TreeHugger has been getting big glossy direct mail promotions on a weekly basis from NaturaLawn of America, promoting "A Safer, More Effective Solution". NaturaLawn home office has spent much effort defining and explaining what is meant by an "organic" product. The direct mail promotional statement that "We have been able to reduce pesticide useage by 80% as compared to traditional lawn spray companies" indicates that it offers an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) type of service that may not rely on USDOA certified-organic inputs only. Well of course. Its not about food.Although a wide variety of do-it-yourself lawn care products are sold on-line by NaturaLawn, the business models seems to focus on contract aplication service done through local franchise operations.

Comparison: With traditional lawn care "spray-based" services, most of what you pay for is a guy to drive a tank truck to your house, schlepping tons of diesel-carried water house to house instead of through the underground pipelines of a community water system. Only a very small weight fraction of the spray is active ingredient. By inferences made from the NaturaLawn website, the NaturaLawn service appears to rely on direct, mostly dry, product application. If true, that's a critical difference.

Limits to Progress: -- The way this TreeHugger sees it, an IPM home service is a step forward if it helps the land owner or tenant reduce exposure to toxic substances, and an even bigger step forward if it reduces vehicle emissions from the service trucks. IPM guidance is unavailable from the major home supply outlets and this professional alternative looks like a help for those determined to actively manage a lawn.

Rules of the Ritual: -- If we don't fertilize at all what happens? Less mowing is required. Heavens sake we don't want that now do we?

And if instead of buying the gigantic lawn tractor for thousands of dollars, for which we need a third garage in our MegaMansion, and we use a small walking mower instead, what happens then? Why, we get excercise at home instead of at the athletic club.

Ritualized behaviors around aesthetic values are what this is all about. Expect those values to come under constant challenge as Climate Change heats up.

by: John Laumer