Pittsfield Township likes its lawns uniform and is willing to use criminal law to enforce its lawnacratic rule. Stanislav Voskov thought that he was doing a good thing by growing an environmentally friendly lawn by allowing various natural plants to grow without mowing. Pittsfield spotted some weeds of over ten inches and brought down the law on the lawn. Now, Judge Cedric Simpson has rule that Voskov must join the Stepford-like community in his lawn appearance.
Voskov submitted the detailed findings of a University of Michigan horticulture specialist that it was “cultivation” for someone to follow the “plant-and-watch” approach. SImpson wants to see more cultivation or it will look too natural.
Jennifer Charnizon, the attorney for the township lawnocrats, insisted that the natural look is out in the township: “The property looks abandoned. It’s for that kind of condition … that ordinances like this one are put in place.”
He should appeal. While the township looks foolish, the movement toward natural lawns or no mow is a serious matter designed to conserve water, reduce pollutants, reduce runoffs, and reinforce native plants. Now, I admit that I have often told my wife that I was not mowing out of a desire to grow a prairie, but there are legitimate advocates of such lawns and not just couch potatoes like myself.
This story is yet another example of the criminalization of America. For an earlier column, click here.
For the full story, click here