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WATCH: A Brief History of the California Lawn
How did a state with millions of acres of desert end up with so many lawns? The answer, in part, has to do with nostalgia. But as you’ll see from the video, many Californians now are replacing that nostalgia with something new.

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The drought in California is so fucking scary, get rid of your lawn, stop buying bottled water, get an energy efficient shower head, do everything you can because every gallon counts

At Least 12 Million Trees Are Dead Because Of California’s Drought

As California’s historic drought continues into its fourth year, the state’s forests are being hit hard by years of below-average precipitation. According to a new study conducted by the U.S. Forest Service, at least 12.5 million trees in California’s national forests have died during the current drought — adding more brittle, dry vegetation to areas already threatened by potentially explosive wildfires.  

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Photographer Matt Black grew up in California’s Central Valley. He has dedicated his life to documenting the area’s small towns and farmers.

Last year, he says he realized what had been a mild drought was now severe. It had simply stopped raining.

“It was kind of a daily surreal thing to walk outside,” Black says.

The focus of Black’s photography, he says, is on documenting the drought’s impact on communities that he believes rarely receive the attention they deserve.

A Landscape Of Abundance Becomes A Landscape Of Scarcity

Photo credit: Courtesy of Matt Black