Kara’s post about lawns and gardens reminds me of a Tobias Lanz review of a book on America’s lawn obsession in Chronicles a couple of years back. Here’s a good quote from it:

Home vegetable gardens and orchards were the real losers in the lawn revolution. Most zoning laws today promote lawns over gardens or other types of landscaping. In the past, even city dwellers tended small gardens and often raised chickens, rabbits, and pigeons to provide protein for their diets. Today, keeping a pair of laying hens in your backyard is a crime in most towns, while running a leaf blower at 90 decibels for hours on end is not. The reason is simple. One is the expression of the power of government and industry; the other, of household autonomy.