Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Safe lawns make a better community

Paul Tukey touts organic lawn care through lecture and film

Express Staff Writer

Paul Tukey will present a talk and film about safe lawns. Photo by

The Sawtooth Botanical Garden is bringing Paul Tukey to Ketchum to talk about organic lawn care and to screen the documentary film "A Chemical Reaction." Tukey is part of the garden's adult speaker series.

Tukey will present a talk at the Gail Severn Gallery on Saturday, Oct. 17, at 7 p.m. with a wine and hors d'oeuvres reception at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20 for members and $25 for non-members. The talk, "Safe Lawns: How and Why To Create a Beautiful Landscape Organically," will include Tukey's personal and professional experience on using organic lawn products.

The Maine-based sustainable landscape expert used conventional chemical lawn techniques and products until he learned about the links between 2,4-D, a synthetic weed killer, and numerous illnesses including cancer.

Tukey suffered from recurrent headaches, nosebleeds and blurred vision, which his physician said were caused from his exposure to 2,4-D. Never giving up his love of gardening, Tukey became an organic gardener and achieves beautiful green grass without the use of any synthetic fertilizer, herbicide or fungicide.

Tukey tells his story in the documentary film, "A Chemical Reaction," which will screen on Saturday, Oct. 17, at the nexStage Theatre in Ketchum at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 for botanical garden members and $10 for non-members. The film is an inspiring story about overcoming great odds and demonstrates the power of people coming together to effect great change in our society.

In an effort to make organic lawn care available to homeowners across North America, Tukey recently co-founded SafeLawns & Landscapes, a franchise-based service company that currently expanding from its Connecticut origin.

Sabina Dana Plasse:

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