Grass: the most underrated plant

Grass 1Of all plants,  grass is probably the most underrated. A bit sad perhaps, because grass definitely deserves our gratitude.

Grass is so much more than the lawns in our gardens, parks and stadiums. Grass is everywhere. It covers half the continent of Africa and reaches right up to the North-pole. And ever since the emergence of grass at the end of the Cretaceous (66 million years ago), it has undoubtedly been the most important plant to the evolution of man.

When the grasses spread across the East-African woodlands it created landscapes where trees were spread thinner and further apart. This in turn forced some of the primates to look for food on the ground, and to look over the tall grasses they had to stand up. That’s right, on two legs…

Rice Farming - Champasak, Laos

Rice Farming – Champasak, Laos

But why is grass so important to us now? I mean, you can’t eat grass, can you? Actually you can! The most important food stuffs  such as wheat and barley are the grains of grasses. Even rice is a grain! And the grasses you can’t eat are feeding us too.  Grass is so rich in nutrients it is food to many animals we use for food.

So next time you mow you lawn, be gentle…


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