There's an article in the current issue of the Southeast Examiner "Plans for Morrison Property" which cued me to write something that continues to be on my mind - planting things other than grass in our open spaces when there is a chance to do so. Here's what I wrote to the Examiner and I think the same applies to the Colwood Golf Course, and any other large open spaces we have left in Portland, Oregon and the planet.
Regarding the article on the Plans for Morrison property I just have one thing to say. No more planting grass in Portland. If it were up to me, I’d make this part of the Portland Plan, as well. There are thousands of plants that grow well in our climate that need no mowing and/or weed-wacking. Since this garden is to honor a Chinese doctor - how about a huge chinese herb garden which could be used by the local chinese medicine schools. Let’s get smart in our planning and lower our maintenance and pesticide/herbicide bills by planting mosses and ferns. Also, with peak oil around the corner if not already here, every open space available should probably be put into food production – how about including a fruit and nut tree orchard in the planning?
It is my sense that every vacant lot should be depaved and turned over to food production as quickly, as possible. If what happened in Cuba is any indication, urban farmers are going to be needed desperately as the oil supply decreases - why not prepare in advance for the inevitable?