How to Repurpose Old Mattresses and Plastic Bottles to make Gardens inexpensively. Excellent example of how ordinary people can minimize waste and improve local food production inexpensively and without aid from government.Read more »
Michael Martin is used to getting compliments on the botanical bonanza he has cultivated, mulched and pampered along his leafy, residential lot on the Near West Side.
But one anonymous complaint set Madison's inspection apparatus in motion and kept Martin in thrall for two weeks, an experience that mustered supportive neighbors.
"I know the city has to respond, and all this is complaint-driven, but they don't have to act on it," she said. "Too many people can use that as a way to get back at their neighbor. One anonymous complaint can be very manipulative."Read more »
It just doesn't get more ridiculous than this. Julie Bass of Oak Park, Michigan -- a mother of 6, law-abiding citizen, and gardener -- is facing 93 days in jail after being charged with a misdemeanor. Her crime? Planting a vegetable garden in the front yard.Read more »
"That's not what we want to see in a front yard," said Oak Park City Planner Kevin Rulkowski.
Why? The city is pointing to a code that says a front yard has to have suitable, live, plant material. The big question is what's "suitable?"
"If you look at the definition of what suitable is in Webster's dictionary, it will say common. So, if you look around and you look in any other community, what's common to a front yard is a nice, grass yard with beautiful trees and bushes and flowers," the city bureaucrat said.Read more »
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