Why do we do this?

In my last post we talked about a homeowner  in Oak Park, Michigan who is facing jail time for planting a vegetable garden in their front yard. The city feels a suburban front yard should have a certain look. Perhaps a lawn and some trees, but certainly not a vegetable garden. I am sure the city would also like that lawn to be weed free since weeds are likely to make the lawn look disheveled, and we mustn't have that. To prevent those weeds the lawn crew might want to spray a weed control on the lawn. That is certainly better than a vegetable garden where weeds need to be removed by hand. Let's spray "Imprelis", an herbicide introduced last year for commercial use by DuPont. The only problem, according to The Detroit Free Press is, "In neighborhoods nationwide, millions of dollars worth of Norway spruce and white pine trees are mysteriously turning brown and dying this summer, and the chief suspect is Imprelis."

It appears that Norway spruce is susceptible to damage and death after lawns they share space with we're sprayed with the lawn herbicide. It seems, "many landscapers in Michigan and elsewhere switched to Imprelis this year to control weeds such as dandelions because it was touted as safer for the environment than predecessors such as 2, 4-D."

Maybe it's easier for those of us in rural areas to say no to lawns. Perhaps the pressure to be like the neighbors makes having a weed free lawn so important. But for the life of me I cannot imagine why we would say NO to someone growing vegetables in their front yard and YES to having a lawn treated with herbicides.