Field of Science

Turning your backyard into a natural area - involuntarily

This is situation is sort of sad; the land owners were conned, or at the very minimum taken advantage of by unscrupulous real estate developers. They buy a lot, build a house, and then find out their backyard occupies a conservation easement and things like patios, gardens, lawn, non-native ornamental trees are not permitted. Now that's real ecological lawn care. How is it possible to buy a property without this being disclosed? As development spreads into more rural areas, such conflicts in land use become more common, and like it or not, typical lawns are not endangered communities, which is why the easement existed. The solution seems simple. Go with the flow and have a natural backyard, that is, as natural as a secondary growth recovery from dozer blight can be, and move your garden, patio, and all to the front lawn (it's a way to meet more neighbors), and be thankful the easement didn't go through your master bedroom. Of course to property rights absolutists, this is an abomination, but no matter where you live, there will be restrictions, so buyer beware. Darn those rules; the Phactor has always so wanted to keep chickens.

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