The Obsessive Quest for the Perfect Lawn
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The rise of the perfect lawn represents one of the most profound transformations in the history of the American landscape. Today the lawn is one of America's leading "crops," outstripping cotton in acres by a factor of two. "American Green," Ted Steinberg's witty expose of this sometimes bizarre phenomenon, traces the history of the lawn from its explosion in the postwar suburban community of Levittown--just miles from where Steinberg grew up--to the present love affair with turf colorants, leaf blowers, and riding mowers. For half a century, Americans have been on a quest for the greenest, weed-free, ultra-trim turf imaginable. But perfection has its costs. Blending muckraking journalism and social history, Steinberg looks at both the lighter and the darker side of the all-American landscape, from mower accidents and pesticide poisonings to lawn-mower racing and the man so addicted to perfection that he re-created Augusta's 12th hole in his backyard. 40 illustrations.
W. W. Norton & Company, 9780393060843, 295pp.
Publication Date: March 1, 2006