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

Sidebar

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

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

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

Writers on the Range

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

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

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

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

Letters

High Country News Classifieds
  • WYOMING CONSERVATION ASSOCIATE
    We are hiring a Wyoming Conservation Associate Full time, competitive pay and benefits. Location: Cody, WY (preferred), Jackson, WY, or Lander, WY Visit www.greateryellowstone.org/careers for...
  • SOUTHWEST REGIONAL DIRECTOR
    The National Parks Conservation Association, the nations leading national park advocacy organization, seeks a Regional Director to lead and manage staff for the Southwest Regional...
  • DIRECTOR OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
    This newly created position with The Nature Conservancy's Colorado River Program will play a key role in the development and implementation of strategies to achieve...
  • PROGRAM OFFICER, INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES, NOVO FOUNDATION
    The Foundation NoVo Foundation acts from the original meaning of philanthropy: the love of humanity. The Foundation is dedicated to catalyzing a global social transformation...
  • ARMY OF THE DOG
    A new generation of monkey wrenchers hits the Front Range?
  • ANNIE CLARK TANNER FELLOWSHIP IN ENVIRONMENTAL HUMANITIES
    The Tanner Humanities Center and the Environmental Humanities Program of the University of Utah seek an environmental writer to offer classes in Utahs Environmental Humanities...
  • ALASKA STATE DIRECTOR
    The Wilderness Society works to protect Wildlands and inspire Americans to care for our public lands. We seek to hire a strategic, experienced leader who...
  • EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
    The Idaho Conservation League (ICL) seeks an individual to lead this 45-year-old organization as executive director, to carry on ICLs work as Idahos leading voice...
  • IDAHO RIVERFRONT:
    2+ acres, 400+ feet on Snake River, 2800 sf residence, NWF-certified wildlife habitat, excellent hunting, fishing, birdwatching, stargazing, sunsets & panoramic views. In the heart...
  • WILDEARTH GUARDIANS IS EXPANDING - THREE JOB OPENINGS
    Guardians is expanding and looking for a few great people to join us in protecting and restoring the wildlife, wild places, wild rivers, and health...
  • SUNNYSIDE MARKET SEEKS NEW PROPRIETOR
    Organic grocery/cafe at Glacier Bay needs a vibrant leader. Love good food, community, and Alaska? Join us!
  • NO INDIVIDUAL HEROES: OURAY MOUNTAIN RESCUE TEAM
    Ouray County, Colorado, a popular tourist destination, has dramatic mountains and amazing winter ice climbing. Challenging terrain and high altitude can push visitors to their...
  • CALIFORNIA PROGRAM ASSOCIATE - TAHOE AREA
    National conservation organization seeks a regular, full-time California Program Associate-Tahoe Area. Position works closely with California-based program staff and National Forest Foundation staff to provide...
  • CALIFORNIA PROGRAM COORDINATOR - TAHOE AREA
    National conservation organization seeks a regular, full-time California Program Coordinator-Tahoe Area. Position works closely with California-based program staff and National Forest Foundation staff to provide...
  • CALIFORNIA PROGRAM MANAGER - TAHOE AREA
    National conservation organization seeks a regular, full-time California Program Manager-Tahoe Area. Position works closely with California-based program staff and National Forest Foundation staff to provide...
  • CALIFORNIA PROGRAM ASSOCIATE, SOUTHERN CA
    National conservation organization seeks a regular, full-time California Program Associate-Southern CA. Position works closely with California-based program staff and National Forest Foundation staff to provide...
  • THE BOOK OF BARLEY -
    Collector's Item! The story of barley, the field crop. 50 years of non-fiction research. www.barleybook.com
  • TEMPORARY ASSISTANT EDITOR
    Are you a climber and a writer who is passionate about mountain literature? Do you love searching through old alpine journals for stories of esoteric...
  • OWN YOUR OWN CANYON - 1400 SF STRAW-BALE ECO-HOME ON 80 ACRES - 3 HOURS FROM L.A.
    1400 sf of habitable space in a custom-designed eco-home created and completed by a published L.A. architect in 1997-99. Nestled within its own 80-acre mountain...
  • RIVER TRIP LEADER & EDUCATOR
    Colorado Canyons Association (CCA) is a growing nonprofit organization fostering community stewardship of our National Conservation Lands with a focus on Dominguez-Escalante, Gunnison Gorge and...