Am I the only one who's sick of hearing about cities forcing people to remove their front yard gardens? Recently, I read about yet another homeowner in this situation. His garden is not unsightly, it's beautiful. Plus, it provides healthy food. Gardening is more than just a bunch of plants. It's a lifestyle. So, why do city ordinances often forbid front yard gardens?
Keeping up appearances
It's all about what I call the uniformity craze. (Front yards should be covered with a neatly manicured lawn and little else.) In some people's opinion, this adds to property values. Personally, I'd be overjoyed to buy a house with a garden in front. I don't see what the big deal is. Neither do 200 neighbors that live near the homeowner above. In fact, they signed a petition to that effect.
What would I do?
Well, nobody's taking my garden without a fight, that's for sure. I was glad to hear the latest homeowner under fire feels the same way. After all, what's the point of owning your home if you can't garden? That's the primary reason we chose our home. Right now, the garden is in the back yard, but if it outgrows that half acre, you can bet we'll expand to the front.
Now, we may proceed with caution.
After reading about numerous people's front yard garden woes, we might plan our front yard garden a little differently. Maybe we'll keep the lawn and use strategically placed planters. As far as I know, those aren't illegal. We could stick to herbs in the front yard. They don't look much different than any other potted plant used for decoration.
We may go all out with the front yard garden.
On the other hand, I'm a bit of a rebel. Maybe we'll get a movement going or something. Let's show these outdated rules the door. If more people planted front yard gardens, it might prompt the powers that be to change the rules. What's the difference between florals, which are allowed and vegetables, which are not? Well, you can eat the vegetables. Otherwise, it's all the same.
Well, I'm not much of one for conspiracy theories, but... Sometimes, as a gardener, I do feel the world in general has it in for me. I already have to contend with Monsanto's seed monopoly efforts. I should be able to plant the type of seeds I like, without the genetic manipulation. Now they're telling us we can't garden in our own front yard? It may not be a conspiracy, but it sure feels like one. So go ahead, plant that front yard garden. Protest when they ask you to tear it up. This is the land of the free. Or at least it's supposed to be.
This article was previously published by this author on a now closed Yahoo property.