Recently with the help of Zoom I attended a wonderful lecture on Frederick Law Olmsted…
In my neighborhood I notice that people are still as particular as ever about the lawn.
They insist that the lawn be cut a certain way, and have a certain look about ut.
Denis Otis in her book Grounds for Pleasure writes, “More recently the lawn has come under attack in books and magazines for its water-guzzling and its dependence on toxic chemicals and polluting fertilizers. Yet it shows no sign whatsoever of disappearing.”
The nineteenth century seed and nursery catalogs did their job well. They sold us the lawn in the essays and countless illustrations in their catalogs dealing with that famous English lawn. We bought it.
Today the lawn is deep in the American psyche.
One of my favorite English gardens is Chatsworth, well north of London. There the lawn seems to go on forever.
Dating back to the seventeenth century, it is now one of the most famous gardens in England. What impressed me most on my visit to Chatsworth was the amount of lawn on the property. It is an important part of the landscape.
The English loved the lawn, and now so do we.