Happy New Year all - This is an update to the thread below: http://www.botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/forums/showthread.php?t=25467&highlight=lawn+alternatives In that thread, you will see a photo of the clover lawn planted almost 2 years ago that I took last summer, when it was just over a year old. Looks great, eh? Well, I have to tell you that it doesn't look so great now (early January). Last year, due to the heavy snow cover, I never saw the clover lawn in winter. This year, with no snow cover, it really doesn't look good at all. As I mentioned in the very first post I made, this is a pretty shady area. The rye grass lawn that had been planted there had been almost entirely taken over by moss and weeds. Before planting the clover lawn, I had the whole area stripped and added new soil and sand. I was pretty happy with the results this past summer...it looked great, required almost no maintenance (a bit of weeding now and then) and provided the dog with a nice place to "go". The moss looks pretty nice now...I might try letting it have its way and see if I can get a moss lawn going. I would consider some kind of hardscape but already have quite a lot of that. I also have more perennial garden than I can handle! In addition to the backyard shady area, it may become necessary to get rid of the front lawn, as Kerrisdale seems to have succumbed to the chafer beetle (it was only a matter of time). So far, our lawn is untouched, but the lawn next door has had a bit of damage and there is one lawn across the street that has been totally destroyed. I suppose I could extend the planting beds all the way to the sidewalk, but would love to hear other alternatives. The front lawn gets more sun than the back...but I would say it barely gets 6 hours of full sun (we have horse chestnuts as street trees, which I love for the cooling effect to the house).