East Aurora Advertiser

Column: YELLOW AND BLUE: the new GREEN


Spring is here, but many of us have hardly noticed, thanks to the “clouds” recently. Last year, spring was under an overcast sky with Covid. This year, the sky has darkened due to a terrible war in Europe. Unfortunately, yet another cloud now covers our sunny sky: April’s United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report for 2022, which has told us the window for reversing climate change is closing. So many promising flowers are budding in spring soon, yet, so many darkening clouds on the horizon.

Despite all that, here is some good news:

You can help clear some of those “clouds.”

What is more, helping is so very easy that it sounds like a joke: DO NOTHING!

You see, in spring not only do grasses remember to start growing, but flowers do so as well. Not the flowers you planted, maybe, but native, groundcovers and long-stemmed flowers like forget-me-nots and dandelions. You might not have noticed them while first mowing your grass, but others did: The pollinators!

By now, various species of butterflies, birds, bees and other pollinators have probably already visited these early blooms. With the current ban on imports from Russia and the suspension of grain imports from Ukraine, the world needs pollinators more than ever. Did you know that we owe every third bite of our food to bees? To simply “DO NOTHING, NO MOWING” in April and May will allow the pollinators to thrive, thereby helping feed the planet. Pollinators prefer native flowers over cultivated ones. No Mow May is an international initiative, that started in 2019 in the United Kingdom when a lack of meadows failed to feed the pollinators.

At the end of May, feel free to mow, though preferably with a person-powered or an electric mower.

You can also participate in the annual contest: Grow the Grandest Dandelion, a Village special. The Advertiser gets credit for this contest, now in its third year. Email your picture before May 15 to dandycontest@gmail.com

Rethink your idea about a perfect lawn. It won’t answer what we need most: healthy ecological spaces that allow biodiversity, from insects to all different types of wildlife. Spraying your lawn will result in excluding this needed buffer of animals we lacked in this pandemic to keep us safe. In our quest for power over nature, we even killed off our own protection on this planet. Also, the sprays have resulted in neurological diseases for many. Is the price for green that high? My youngest art students delight in making green with yellow and blue. Exactly the colors of the early spring bloomers on your lawn. And by the way, two colors of the flag of a nation we try to support any way we can, right?

Show them off this year, as bright and high as you can. It is simple: By doing nothing: NO MOW May, No Spray, Let it Bee!

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Aurorans for Climate and Environmental Sense (ACES) is a citizen group started in 2012 to support the East Aurora Village Climate-Smart initiative. Its mission is to engage all residents of greater East Aurora to help East Aurora become a Climate Smart Community through education, planning and action. For more information, email jweide7170@aol.com.

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