Today, in between reading torture memos, I burned my front lawn. (Click on the pix to enlarge.)
The first year we moved into our house, mr. ew and I replaced most of the front lawn with native plants. We’ve got some oaks in our side yard which pretty much prevented lawn from actually growing. By replacing the grass with native species, we figured we could have flowers and interesting sedges that didn’t need much care that would thrive under the oaks.
Thing is, you’re supposed to burn native plants every five years or so. The idea is that the burn kills off non-native species and refreshes the natives that are left over. We were overdue. Plus, we had a bunch of ash saplings grow in last year (which is sort of odd, since almost all the ash trees in MI have died off after being infested with the Emerald Ash Borer), which were taking over.
So today we burned our lawn. Or rather, we had some guys who know what they’re doing come and burn the lawn. There were three of them, dressed like firemen, with backpacks of either gasoline/diesel or water. They’d light the fire, let it burn for a while, then put it out before our house (or, more importantly, the neighbor’s house) went up in flames. The whole process took about a half hour.
Yes, some of the neighbors came out trying to figure out why the heck we were setting our lawn on fire. And, since we live on a fairly busy road, there were plenty of people rubbernecking, trying to figure out what was up. (School’s out today, so the kids weren’t in the elementary school down the street, and we did it during a fairly low traffic hour.)
We burned the actual non-native lawn too. Apparently, it’s buffalo grass, and will come back stronger after the burn, as well.
So now we’re left with a scorched front lawn!!
The woodsier parks in our town do these burns all the time. It’s amazing to see the fresh new plants growing out of the burn, coming in healthier than before. In a few weeks, that’s what my lawn is going to look like.
Thanks to Peterr and bmaz, a selection of music to accompany this post: