I’d like to convert a large chunk of lawn into a meadow or low-maintenance lawn. What is the easiest way to do this? I don’t want to use a herbicide to kill the existing grass, and it’s too big to dig up the sod.

?Louise Cameron, Halifax, NS

The best way of getting rid of lawn is to save up piles and piles of newspapers and make a thick layer (up to four inches) of them on the hated grass. Make sure the newspapers are dampened but not falling apart. This will kill off anything growing underneath. Then top with soil and sow your meadow seed (the newspaper will eventually rot down). You may have to take two runs at this, doing half now and the other half later. Remember that proper
meadows take time to establish and need some maintenance including mowing a couple of times a year. You could also try Eco-Lawn, a slow-growing grass that requires little mowing. Check out Wildflower Farm for details on both meadow mixes and Eco-Lawn.

?Marjorie Harris, Editor at Large, Gardening Life