I was mowing the lawn this weekend, and thinking rather morosely about the environmental evils of Lawns In General. Our lawn is not a monoculture -- it's a mix of Bermudagrass, lippia, dichondra, buffelgrass, yellow sweetclover, desert mallow, Persian clover and other plants which occasionally grow up from uneaten birdseed, and assorted weeds. Unless it's the dead of winter, something in that mix is usually flowering, providing bee fodder. We get lots of bees -- not just honeybees, but carpenter bees, leafcutter bees, and a couple other wild species I'm not sure of the names of. (Arizona has a great variety of wild bees.) Not to mention the butterflies, wasps, and other pollinating insects. We have a dozen or so trees (two grapefruit, two oranges, one lime, one lemon, one fig, two acacia, one eldarica pine, and a dwarf bottlebrush) proving shade and a carbon sink, and that's not to be sneezed at around here. Plus a bunch of hopeful acacia saplings on the west side that may be shade in twenty years. But, still, we live in a desert and I can't pretend it's not a water hog, even though I use the Responsible Watering Tricks -- deep water once a week instead of sprinkling every day, etc.
But on the other hand, converting to desert landscaping (with actual desert plants and trees of even remotely comparable size, as opposed to just stopping watering and letting everything die) would cost a freaking fortune. And I don't want to live in a house with a bare dirt and gravel yard. If I could wave a magic wand and covert our entire yard to xeriscaping, I would. But magic wands being scarce upon the ground, I suppose I will just continue to stew about it. Rants Talk to me