My husband and I made a compromise at the beginning of the year: He gets to have the lawn company fertilize and apply weed-killer in the front yard so it looks nice; the backyard stays chemical-free. Not only do I NOT want to expose myself to pesticides and herbicides, which act like uber-strong estrogen in the body, feeding my cancer, but we eat things that grow in the backyard--mulberries from the trees, wild strawberries and dandelion leaves in the grass, and of course, produce from my garden. I also feed these items to my 11 hermit crabs, who are particularly sensitive to chemicals. So...no chemicals in the backyard. And that's the agreement we made with our lawn company.
[Note: We would really like to use all-natural items on the front lawn, but to do so for our size yard would be incredibly expensive.]
Yesterday, apparently our lawn company came out and applied the chemicals--to the back yard as well as the front! My husband and I are hopping mad. The guy claims he stayed at least 10 feet away from the garden, but that's not friggin' far enough away as far as I am concerned, particularly since the herbicide is sprayed into the air and can be carried by the wind. At least the fertilizer was in granule form, and he claims it is organic, but without knowing what brand it was or where it came from, I have no idea what organic means in his language.
So no more dandelion leaves for salads from the back yard this year (which probably were direct sprayed), and no more gardening barefoot for a while unless I wear my shoes out to the garden and then step out of them.
We'll be sending a check for front-yard application only to the chemical company and canceling our contract. Despite the expense, I think I'd rather not eat out for a month and save up for SAFE chemicals than risk being exposed to killer chemicals again.
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On the upside, I FINALLY got some direct seeding done today: double-yield cucumbers, bushy cucumbers, provider green beans, black beauty zucchini, and clemson spineless okra. I have more to plant, but that's all the energy I had today.
Learning from last year, I planted only THREE zucchini plants rather than 12, so hopefully I won't be overrun with them again. I still have lots of frozen zucchini to use up from last season! I planted a lot of cucumbers, and am planning on making a LOT of bread and butter pickles this year--everybody seemed to like those.
I added grass clippings over the top since the grass clippings in the burn pile had NOT been yucked up by the dufus lawn guy's chemicals, and now I just need to find the energy to go back outside, once I've cooled down, and water.
Thank you, Mother Nature, for some nice weather for gardening! Feel free to supply some more in the very near future!