There are many reasons you should love your lawn. As Australians, so many of our memories revolve around the backyard or local park. For some, it’s Christmas and birthday parties, time spent with the kids or even that backyard cricket catch you took on Australia Day back in 2009 that you still remind everyone about.
But if you need more reasons, let us share the love by sharing the beneficial environmental impacts keeping a lawn can have, especially if you look after it.
Lawns reduce runoff
When Australia is lucky enough to get some rainfall, the water either enters our lawn or our stormwater system. With increasing urbanisation in many areas, this is putting increasing pressure on stormwater and dam systems. Runoff (water that doesn’t seep in) carries sediments (soil), pollutants and disease-causing organisms and increases the likelihood of flooding.
Lawns sequester carbon
Lawn is a plant after all, so it takes up carbon dioxide and releases oxygen – pretty handy, we think! This carbon is stored in the below ground parts of the lawn, such as the roots, and deposited into the soil, removing carbon from the air and storing it for long periods.
Air and water pollution
Lawn is very good at holding onto dust after it settles from the air. Plus, due to its extensive root system, it’s also adept at preventing soil erosion by wind or water - it’s so good you will often see grass seeds used on roadsides for just this sort of control.
A healthy lawn can have a impact on your house temperature. Lawn is usually around 15 degrees cooler than concrete and can be 30 degrees cooler then synthetic turf. This is achieved by the lawn pulling soil moisture up from below ground to cool the air around it. The cooler surface temperatures then have a flow on effect to your house.
Environmental biodiversity and food source
A healthy lawn plays a very important part in the food web of Australian wildlife. A highly active soil provides habitat for an impressive number of microbial populations including bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms. These microflora and microfauna provide food for macrofauna like grubs and insects which in turn provides food sources for Australian wildlife. In periods of drought its not uncommon to see Kangaroos and wallabies feeding on healthy rural lawns due to a lack of naturally occurring feed.