Life After Lawn

Life After Lawn

These "Life After Lawn" homeowners made the decision to take out their front lawns and replace them with sustainable landscapes. Learn more about their stories.

Life After Lawn Advice: Plant for Year-round Color

February 28, 2017
The Bayon’s front yard displays Eva’s passion for and education in botany. An avid plant collector, Eva and her husband have created a miniature rock garden in their relatively small yard with the artistic placement of boulders and rock mulch, all anchored and softened by a variety of perennials that range in size, color and growing habits.

Life After Lawn Advice: Learn by Doing

February 28, 2017
Mona and Frank Demasi

Many succulents are well adapted to low-water landscapes because their thickened leaves store water, providing them the ability to survive dry, hot climates. Softer leaved succulents like Echeveria prefer shade in our region while the larger, cold-hardy Agave and Aloe species do well in full sun.

Life after lawn advice: Shop the Arboretum plant sales

September 09, 2016
Ria takes the commitment to water savings seriously; first renovating her backyard two years ago, and last fall tackling her front yard. Birch trees and high-water turf were removed. Now this east-facing front yard features subtly sloped areas behind two curved walls. This additional hardscape creates a structure for spreading mats of white lantana and red verbena whose long-lasting blooms add color and attract a variety of butterflies.

Life after lawn advice: Plant it and they will come

September 09, 2016
Years of soil compaction, a turf-covered slope, and a complicated web of tree roots near the surface made Director of Public Horticulture Ellen Zagory’s central Davis yard difficult to irrigate.

Life after Lawn advice: Natural Does Not Have to Mean Messy

September 09, 2016
When Kiers' family moved into their mid-century-style home in July 2014, the front yard was a traditional patch of Bermuda grass and boxwood hedges. But, as a landscape architect, Kiers knew what to do next — the lawn had to go.

Life after lawn advice: start with a plan

September 09, 2016
A year and half after Stacey Parker, GATEways horticulturist for the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, took out her front lawn via cardboard sheet mulching, her yard continues to thrive. Her advice to homeowners looking to do the same: start with a plan.

Life after lawn: Replace your lawn and feed the world?

March 17, 2016
Now, as landscapes are being revamped due to the drought, and lawns are removed or let go, the UC Davis campus, the city and its residents are in a position to serve as an example of how urban areas — particularly urban areas in the heart of agricultural country — can support global crop production through small changes in landscape choices.

IN THE NEWS: Fall is time to replace lawns, gardens with water-wise plants

November 06, 2015
If you allowed your lawn to die this summer to save water, now is the time to replace it with water-wise landscape plants, say landscape specialists from UC Davis. Autumn, with its cooler weather and anticipated winter rains, is the best time in most areas of California for landscape planting.

LIFE AFTER LAWN: A Davis Backyard Transformation

October 06, 2015
Are brown lawns the new normal? Facing that question a year ago, Ria de Grassi, longtime Davis resident, removed her backyard lawn and hopes sharing her experience can help others who struggled, like her, with where to begin.