Tuesday, July 28, 2009


A 30-year old garden that I can only describe as a labour of love is in danger of being razed by the municipality of Mississauga (a suburb that wishes it was Toronto but not nearly as hip) because of a single complaint by a neighbour.

After not enforcing a bylaw for 30 years the city is apparently now moving forward and informed Carmela and Frank Loconte, a retired couple who own the adjacent property and have maintained the city owned plot since 1979, to prepare for the worst. The garden will be bulldozed and replaced with grass due to the impact their perennial wonderland has on sight lines which apparently constitute a clear and present danger. This despite city workers saying as recently as last week that the garden was fine. Mississauga should be careful however, as Frank is a retired lawyer.

This isn't the first time we have seen similar complaints. While this case revolves around a city owned plot of land we have seen other stories where property owners who were concerned with the environment have replaced boring turf lawns with perennial wildgrasses or natural indigenous plantings that disrupt some suburbanites concept of a "proper" frontage. Despite it being more a concern about aesthetics the complaints usually revolve around visibility concerns since these gardens clearly grow higher then turf grass. We all know most bureaucrats are so keen on behaving like big brother when it comes to safety issues it only makes sense that folks opposed to environmentally sound landscaping use this tactic.

Details can be found on the Mississauga News website.

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