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Western USA states pay to remove lawns



August 23, 2013
Photo Ildar Sagdejev

Photo Ildar Sagdejev

Los Angeles has paid residents to remove more than 1 million square feet (93,000sqm) of lawn from their home gardens since 2009.

With the first 5 months of 2013 being the driest on record across south and western USA, cities throughout the west are looking at rebates for lawn removal, and even a complete ban on all new front lawns. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power says that its lawn rebate program will save approximately 47 million gallons (178 million litres) of water each year. Long Beach California now offers its residents $2USD a square foot rebate to take up their lawn.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn Las Vegas, front lawns are banned in new residential developments and the rebate rules state that the lawn must stay removed even with house onsale, or the new owners will have to repay the rebate plus interest. And in most cities, you have to prove that your lawn is still alive before you get paid to kill it off.

“The era of the lawn in the West is over,” said Paul Robbins, the director of the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin.

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10 years ago

We are touring through the US from LA to Denver. When in Las Vegas we noticed a lot of artificial turf even on the main Las Vegas Strip. At a distance it gave the green lawn look and as we know LV is all about the look it works well for them.
While in San Diego we noticed a varied amount of succulents in Balbao Gardens & along the coastal suburbs that looked great. It didn’t look like a desert although our skin & thirst told us how dry it really was. Australia can still go a long way with our water wise plant usage.