Re: Noxious weed? Nah, falling roof
I got a few thoughts on the whole invasive/native mentality. None of
But first, a report on the lighter side. We've got all these do-good
county rules for landscapes [X number of approved trees, no plants
under the eaves, lawn must be less than 50 percent of landscape space,
no plants that the county has deemed invasive, on and on].
The amusing part is that the call on this stuff is left to building
inspectors, who, as we all know, are former plumbers and carpenters who
were never quite good enough or smart enough to make it in the trades.
They're sort of resentful bureaucratic bubbas.
The consequence is that the "rules" are applied randomly and
unevenly--some inspectors search for botanic terrorist while others
sneak off pubs and practice elbow bending. [Off topic, but local TV
followed one county inspector for a week when all he did was move from
bar to bar 10 hours a day. Right, 2 hours were overtime.]
So when a client's CO was denied last week because she didn't have a
certain number of something or other, the designer [who has landscaped
all of the other houses in this 240 house development] went down to the
county building to find out why the CO was denied and what needed to be
done chop-chop so the woman could close and move in.
What he found was that the night before his visit, the roof of the
county building had collapsed--right over the building inspectors'
offices. With an expression of pure innocence, he asked Herr Chief
Inspector who had signed off on the roof, and said he hoped no one was
On Friday, March 19, 2004, at 04:10 PM, Marge Talt wrote:
Seems to me that what starts out with all good intentions soon
develops into something that makes very little sense.
Until about 25 years ago or so, very few people even realized that
plants could be native or exotic; few people were aware that there
were problems with the environment. Well, it is a good thing that
more people ARE aware that there is an environment and that humans
can have an impact on its health, BUT, like a lot of good intentions,
the whole movement has gone too far. It seems that humans can't just
use moderation; we have to go off the deep end for about any cause we
Preserving the status quo is an unreasonable goal for ANY aspect of
life on this planet. Trying to go back to some pristine environment
that no living human has ever experienced is also unreasonable.
Current thinking has gotten so fuzzy. Too many are on the 'native
only' bandwagon without actually thinking about native to what and
when nor whether it's actually reasonable or possible to change the
course of nature to meet our preconceived ideas about what it ought
Yes, it is sad to see native plant stands die out, but they will
continue to do so as long as we humans continue to muck with
ecosystems. It's not exotic plants that kill off native plants;
it's human activity. But, it's a whale of a lot easier to blame it
all on some poor plant than change human habits.
When any government agency gets involved; Katie bar the door! Logic
has no place in bureaucracy.
Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Editor: Gardening in Shade
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