This is a local story of a grass-free xeriscaped* yard. The owner removed the grass in his front yard and replaced it with plants that don't need to be mown (saves gas, electricity, man power) or watered by artificial means (city water through hoses or rain barrels). These plants (mostly sedums) can exist on natural rainfall, even in near-drought conditions.
Richmond graphic artist Noah Scanlin posted on the continued progress of his front yard on his blog Another Limited Rebellion here.
Here are pictures of other xeriscaped lawns using rocks and drought-resistant plants:
Since I already know that I am lazy (and eco-conscious) this will be the #1 way I will landscape when I get that sweet cottage in the future.
Images: landscapes-design.com, luxuryhousingtrends.com, landscaperm.com
*xeriscape = Greek for xeros = dry, -scape = view or scene