Urban Fold

Coaxed by Cities, Southwest U.S. Homeowners Say Goodbye to Grass

With strained water supplies a growing problem throughout the Southwestern U.S., cities from Austin to Los Angeles are using carrots and sticks to coax homeowners into adopting drought-resistant landscapes. Not all are pleased to see the grass go.

"Worried about dwindling water supplies, communities across the drought-stricken Southwest have begun waging war on a symbol of suburban living: the lush, green grass of front lawns," writes Ian Lovett. 

"In hopes of enticing, or forcing, residents to abandon the scent of freshly cut grass, cities in this parched region have offered homeowners ever-increasing amounts to replace their lawns with drought-resistant plants; those who keep their grass face tough watering restrictions and fines for leaky sprinklers."

"These efforts are drastically reshaping the landscape, with cactuses and succulents taking over where green grass once reigned," he observes. "But some residents worry that turf removal has already gone too far, robbing children of play spaces."

Full Story: Arid Southwest Cities’ Plea: Lose the Lawn

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