Janesville63.5°

What to do with dandelions

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Greg Peck
May 21, 2013

I knew the Sound Off comment we printed May 15 would spark a lively debate, and it has.

“A town should be free of dandelions. All property owners can afford lawn service or do it yourself. It is disgusting to ignore this eyesore.”

Several callers in Sunday’s Sound Off feature took issue with that. One even suggested a California visitor considered our dandelions to be pretty flowers. More Sound Offs are coming Wednesday, including one touting the edible values of dandelion greens.

I can understand the original caller’s chagrin. My wife and I do our best to maintain a decent lawn. We invest time, energy and money in our yard, buying grass seed and fertilizer and trying to keep dandelions and other weeds at bay. Meanwhile, some homes in our neighborhood have yards that look like the owners are still in winter hibernation.

I know of one home where a young family moved in, ripped out most front shrubs, never replaced them, and now has a “for sale” sign up. Dandelions and grass stand a foot tall throughout the yard. Another yard on my daily dog walk has tree limbs that fell over the winter. I figured the homeowner would have to pick them up before mowing. Wrong—they mowed right over them and left them lie. The owner of a multifamily home used bricks to create a nice triangular piece of landscaping with shrubs a few years ago. Now, it’s mostly home to weed and dead bushes.

I think part of the responsibility of owning property in a city is maintaining the home and/or yard well enough that it doesn’t detract from the neighborhood and any neighbor’s ability to sell at a fair price. Call it being neighborly.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook



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