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Smart Yard: 60-Minute Lawn Care Paperback – February 27, 1995

4.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"Yardeners"-ordinary homeowners caring for lawns and gardens-dream of a low-maintenance lawn without weeds or pests that requires infrequent mowing or watering. The authors-he's the gardening expert for NBC's Today and she is a garden writer-contend that this dream is a very real possibility, demanding "significant effort in the first year or two," after which the lawn will begin to take care of itself. This non-technical and clearly written guide considers, specifically, the "northern" or "cool weather" grasses, those comprising lawns from Maine to North Carolina and west to the Dakotas as well as the Pacific Northwest. After a discussion of effective techniques for general lawn care, the Balls take on compaction problems, soil rebuilding, drainage and re-seeding; a final section tackles insect and animal pests and grass diseases. While this is not a guide to an entirely organic yard-the authors describe themselves as "reluctant and cautious users of pesticides"-it does offer choices. Advice for weeds ranges from hand-pulling to herbicidal spot-treatment to complete starting over; solutions for insect pests include both beneficial nematodes and insecticidal soaps.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

In recent years, environmentalists, gardeners, and harried homeowners have begun to question the validity of the American lawn as the major feature of most landscapes. As traditionally tended, a lawn in most parts of the country demands a great deal of time, money, and effort to maintain. These two books offer greatly differing strategies for handling this problem. The Balls (Yardening, LJ 12/91) recognize that most people want to keep their grassy lawns but with a lot less effort. Readers of Smart Yard will quickly realize that the subtitle's 60-minutes-per-week claim will only take effect a year or more after they make the initial investment in time and effort to renew or replace their lawn by improving the soil, choosing appropriate grass varieties, aerating and dethatching, eliminating most herbicides and pesticides, and assuring frequent but "tall" mowing that leaves the grass around two inches high. The result will be a healthier lawn that will resist drought, diseases, and pests and ultimately demand less pampering. In contrast, Daniels explains how and why to replace turfgrass with other plants to create an entirely new kind of lawn. Examples include prairie and native grass lawns, meadows, moss lawns and woodlands, ground covers, and front-yard gardens. Since many antilawn mavericks have gotten into trouble because of local ordinances and homeowners' associations, Daniels (a former editor of Organic Gardening) includes a chapter on how to deal with such opposition. The Wild Lawn Handbook will find a much smaller audience than the more mainstream Smart Yard, but it gathers together a great deal of specific, practical information that may be hard to find elsewhere, as well as examples of successfully installed alternative lawns. Both books are highly recommended for most gardening collections.?Beth Clewis, Prince William P.L., Va.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Fulcrum Publishing (February 27, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1555911382
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555911386
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,792,221 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
With the reviews and the premise, I was totally excited to be receiving my copy of "Smart Yard". Three pages in, my jaw dropped in utter disappointment: this book is written for northern climates and grasses. Neither the book's review nor a synopsis of the book (both on Amazon and on the book itself) mention this limitation. With 100+ days of 90+ degree weather, limited rainfalls, special soil types (Georgia red clay) and different grass (hybrid fescue and bermuda), this book essentially became a waste of my (money). I'm holding on to the book for the information (80% *does* apply) and the genteel manner it promotes for lawn care. I just wish I had known earlier.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a must for anyone who wants a great looking lawn but doesn't want to spend all his or her leisure time working on it.
The author covers every topic in a detailed manner, from renovation to pest/weed control to low-maintenance watering, in the process dispelling many common myths about lawn care. Included in each section are countless useful tips and suggestions.
The book is organized by topic (e.g. fertilization, pest control, etc.) but includes a useful section on lawn care by season which discusses the best times for each law maintenance task.
Well laid out and enjoyable to read, this book will make you itch for spring during those long winter months.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has everything you need to create a beautiful lawn. I covers every problem you might ever in encounter and is a very readable 200 pages. It's one draw back is that it does not have color pictures. I (and my neighbors) have seen an immediate improvement in my lawn since I changed to lawn care practices mentioned in the book.
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By A Customer on November 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
Ever since I bought my first house three years ago (with the worst lawn I have seen), I have been asking people how to make it better. I've tried a few things and been told to try much more. I never was good at understanding plants and soil, so I was looking for a book that explained how and why my lawn grew, why it was thin, weedy, etc. I didn't want someone to tell me "Just do this and that" but more of an educational tool that empowered me to decide what was best for my lawn.
This book has answered all of my questions in a way easy for me to grasp. It's too cold now to do anything, but I will use this book next spring. I like how the authors try to be environmentally conscious without being afraid to use modern chemicals when they are best. I would recommend this book to evey homeowner in the North. (...)
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