Dallas zoning overlords insist water-conserving cactus garden be replaced with a lawn
Knight’s handsomely restored cottage in the Junius Heights Historic District shows a lot of work and care.
A Google Earth Street View photo from a few years back reveals the aging house fronted by a ragged, sun-scorched yard with bald patches of bare dirt showing through the weeds and parched grass.
Since then, the house has been repainted and spruced up. The unkempt yard is gone entirely, replaced by a carefully chosen display of native Texas cactuses and desert flowers anchored by red river stones.
Knight, who has a horticulture degree from Texas A&M University, purposely chose plants that will thrive despite heat and drought.
It’s interesting, striking and environmentally responsible.
It’s also different, which the city’s preservation overlords apparently cannot tolerate. As my colleague Randy Lee Loftis reported Wednesday, the city’s Landmark Commission has told Knight the xeriscape design isn’t a “historically appropriate” conservation measure. They want him to plant a lawn.
The sooner lawns are seen as bringing house values down, the better off we will all be. Lawns should be deprecated where encountered, and lawn owners encouraged to change their ways. And come on. Who wants to mow the lawn? It's the quintessential suburban symbol, which should die the death, and is, along with what it symbolizes.
Wrong, wrong, wrong!