The most obvious uses of artificial grass are becoming clear: conserving water, reducing the use of fertilizers and pesticides, eliminating yard work, and having a natural-feeling green lawn for year-round use in backyards, front yards, play areas, kennels, and general commercial landscaping.
But inventive customers of synthetic grass and other artificial turfs have discovered myriad novel uses for this natural-looking landscaping alternative. Examples range from architecture to interior design to very practical urban uses.
Synthetic lawn has been used as an inspired covering for all kinds of patios, indoor and outdoor walls, outdoor signage, even on ceilings (one Los Angeles restaurant hung fake-grass panels from its ceiling to cover the industrial duct work; another used artificial grass as the background for its external signage).
As part of creating a casual atmosphere and meeting LEED standards, Skype’s corporate headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif., features several small park-like settings indoors, compete with synthetic lawn, wood lawn chairs, and benches.
In Amsterdam, the interior design of Google’s offices was inspired by the area’s cultural history and visual landscape. The design includes small 1960s motor vans that serve as meeting rooms, in faux-roadside settings complete with artificial grass, lawn chairs, and fake grills.
“This is a great example of why quality artificial grasses make great sense for designing in small, indoor spaces, either permanently or on a temporary basis,” said Gregory Goehner, president of an artificial turf company. “It can be installed nearly anywhere, and because it doesn’t require dirt or watering like turf grass does, it’s very lightweight and incredibly clean.”
In bustling New York City, meanwhile, synthetic grass provides the floor covering for Soaked, a skyscraper-topping, outdoor bar atop the Mondrian SoHo hotel. Elsewhere in Gotham, artificial grass has been the ground cover of Park Here, a 0.1-acre temporary indoor pop-up park in the Nolita neighborhood of Manhattan, north of Little Italy and Chinatown, and has landscaped balcony terraces of the ultra-modern Trump Place.
In Atlanta, the producers of the TV show Movie and a Makeover replicated a backyard patio complete with lawn on an Atlanta rooftop using synthetic grass.
“We’re very proud and always excited to learn how designers, urban planners, homeowners and others of our customers find ways to use artificial grass to solve design and environmental challenges to make life a little more interesting and certainly a lot more livable,” Goehner said.