Magazine
The Lure of the Lawn

August 21, 2006

It’s not easy to wean Westerners away from their lush, traditional, turfgrass lawns, but with drought an increasing fact of life, Xeriscape gardening is finally catching on. Also in this issue: Three compromise wilderness bills have passed the House and now await Senate approval.

Feature

The Lure of the Lawn
It’s not easy to wean Westerners away from their lush, traditional, turfgrass lawns, but with drought an increasing fact of life, Xeriscape gardening is finally catching on

Editor's Note

A green obsession
Westerners, like most Americans, are deeply in love with their lawns – but in an time of increasing drought, the Kentucky bluegrass is going to have to go

Uncommon Westerners

Safety first
Steve Ficklin is an oil and gas safety inspector for the Bureau of Land Management in western Colorado

Essays

How we lost our ranch to gas drilling
A rancher recounts how oil drilling destroyed her rural lifestyle and forced her and her husband to sell their western Colorado ranch
Nine reasons why a river is good for the soul
A writer on a river trip through canyon country muses on things like sand, rapids, ruins and time, as well as the joy that comes from being outside in the company of family and friends

Dear Friends

Dear friends
Matt Jenkins wins prize for Western Environmental Journalism, and Paolo Bacigalupi wins Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for science fiction short story; HCN board meeting and potluck in Missoula; visitors; Tim McKay dies

News

Wilderness cliffhanger
Three compromise wilderness bills have passed the House and now await Senate approval
Tribes tackle taggers
Rural Indian communities such as Colorado’s Ute Mountain Ute Reservation are seeing a disturbing rise in urban-style gangs and gang-related violence
Clearing a path for power
An ambitious plan to create new corridors for power lines and pipelines will make it easier for utility companies to tap into the West’s energy boom

Book Reviews

For the love of a river
In the anthology There’s This River, Christa Sadler gathers the stories of rambunctious river rafters on the Grand Canyon’s Colorado River
Loss and renewal in the Northwest
Steven Radosevich writes simple, painful, personal essays about the changing landscape of the Pacific Northwest in his new book, Good Wood: Growth, Loss and Renewal.
Bearable ways to deal with bruins
Linda Masterson’s new book, Living With Bears, is a good-humored, practical guide to getting along with black bears in the West

Heard Around the West

Heard around the West
Nevada’s toad boom; Utah piranha; roadkill CPR; Donald Rumsfeld vs. Navajo Marine; super-rich lay claim to Montana waterway

Letters

Two Weeks in the West

Two weeks in the West
Third parties can no longer challenge public-land sales to mining companies; BLM violated NEPA in leasing Utah wilderness-quality parcels to oil and gas companies; Divine Strake weapons test at Nevada Test Site delayed; Congress reforms conservation easement

Related Stories

Have golf's glory days gone by?
Golf – the game that brought grass to the desert – appears to have hit a rough patch in the West
What is Xeriscaping?
The seven basic principles of Xeriscaping are explained
Xeric Families of the West
Photo descriptions of Xeriscapers in the West