Making a Lawn in Italian Gardens
There can be nothing more disturbing for me as a garden designer than the sight of a green, English style lawn, in Italy. Ever since the onset of expensive computerized irrigation systems Italy has begun regarding the "English lawn" in Italy as a sort of status symbol, as one might for an expensive car or handbag- it seems that everyone just have to have one!
For me personally the whole idea, reason and essence of making a garden in Italy, or anywhere else, is to somehow connect with, aid and honor the beauty of the natural world by bringing nature closer to our lives. However I find the whole concept of spraying hundreds of liters of water twice per day on fine grass, really quite disturbing!
Fine grass/turf requires around 6/10 liters of water sprayed on to it every square meter, twice per day to keep the grass healthy and maintain that green effect. This means that if we take a lawn of just 100m2 and consider that from early April to late October we must spray a minimum of around 1200 liters of fresh water upon it, every day for around 200 days we arrive at the shocking figure of 240,000 liters in just one summer season alone!
In order to allow us to WASTE this amount of precious water on our lawn we first have to install expensive pumps, dig long trenches, lay down yards of plastic piping and pay the extortionate fees of a plumber to do all of this- is that not...CRAZY?
I have spent around 15 years working on a garden design system that avoids all of this by using natures simple logic yet, at the same time, maintains the identity of the Italian garden. There is an ecological solution for the Italian garden!
By Jonathan Radford