Bringing science and society together

“We want to help people get the lawns and yards they want, and at the same time promote a healthy urban ecosystem.”

The conversations with homeowners didn’t stop with a record of lawn-care choices. Homeowners also discussed alternate approaches that could produce the lawns they wanted through science.

Understanding how plants grow, how nutrients move through the system, and so on suggests different lawn-care practices to achieve the different types of lawns. For example, grass makes the best use of fertilizer when it’s growing, which in Minnesota is mostly in the fall. Letting your grass grow longer helps it form deeper roots. Sweeping up leaves and fertilizer from the sidewalk keeps them from washing into lakes and rivers.

“Every yard is unique,” says Maria. “Some are sunny, some are shady. Some are flat, some are hilly. There are different soil types, different plant types, etc. We can use science to match the yard you have with the lawn you want, while still protecting our urban environment.”

Kids on lawn

However you use your yard, science can help you grow the lawn you want.