Edible Estates

Feature

Friday, June 13, 2008

The artist Fritz Haeg has been digging up and transforming front lawns from Kansas to California. His art project is called "Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn." Studio 360's Julie Burstein found out that one of Haeg's edible estates is just blocks from her house -- she and the artist toured the neighborhood. With production by Andrea Silenzi.

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Produced by:

Andrea Silenzi

Contributors:

Julie Burstein

Comments [6]

Janet Nelson from Cleveland OH

Heard this guy speak in Cleveland. Acted like he invented happenings and performance art and was
next in line after Buckminster Fuller. Cultural literacy
lacking and did not understand when someone
asked a question about entropy. Who the heck does
he know that he gets to present these refried concepts
as original?

Jun. 17 2008 08:35 PM
Adrian Down from Randolph, NJ

Anyone interested in getting more from their lawn than a weekly workout behind a lawn mower should look into edible forest gardening (http://www.edibleforestgardens.com/). This system of landscape design attempts to mimic natural forest ecosystems to create sustainable environments that are both beautiful and bountiful and often require much less work than comparably productive gardens of annual vegetables. Perhaps more importantly, edible forest gardening does NOT require full sun, so "I have too many trees" is no longer an excuse! Because this is a fairly new paradigm in gardening, creating an edible forest garden may require more initial research, but I believe that the returns in decreased labor and healthier ecosystems more than compensate.

I currently live in a New Jersey suburb very much like the one featured in this story. As a student of sustainable agriculture and landscape design, I would like to see every one of the extravagantly wasteful lawns around me converted to food production. Edible forest gardening is one of the most exciting ideas I've seen along these lines in a long time (I promise I'm not being paid in any way to endorse this system, although it probably sounds like it. I have seen the results in practice.)

Jun. 16 2008 08:26 PM
sean from Cleveland, OH

This is a great idea. Since I was little, I enjoyed that odd house you'd spot in the suburbs that had a front yard of all different plants and flowers and no grass.
I've removed so far about half of my front turf on my little 900 sq. ft. lot. I've got walking onions, grain amaranth, and sacred basil integrated with the roses, lilies and such. Of course, there's no grass out back.I had the wife almost convinced on pulling out the rest af the front grass and replacing it with chamomile, but found out some bees lke to nest in the clover patches, so we'll probably just let the clover take over the grass. What do I need grass for? I have no animals that graze.

Jun. 16 2008 01:15 AM
Gerard Stamm from Asheville, NC

A great idea, long time in coming but still a long way (unfortunately) from mainstream. Well, after all, Mr. Haeg does want to be provocative. I particularly like the slide show. GStamm

Jun. 15 2008 11:15 AM
dopey

This is so wonderful! I already know people who do this, well, on a small scale ...I hope it becomes more acceptable because the harvest time is so rewarding!

Jun. 15 2008 04:34 AM
Catherynne A Jean from Porter Ranch, CA

I love this idea, and have done a smaller version of it for a while - but not enough! The only problem is my husband thinks it looks messy - and when gardens are getting to the end of the harvest season they do look a bit messy... But as my backyard landscaping is so mature now that it shades too much of the area I used to grown vegetables, I may have to resort to the front yard!

Jun. 13 2008 10:59 PM

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