The demand for artificial grass for landscaping is growing at 10 to 15 percent per year. This has been stimulated by several factors, including the desire for lower maintenance, an all weather surface, and the recent droughts in the country that have led to a serious water shortage.
Modern artificial turf offers high quality surfaces, a realistic appearance, and long life which is why it makes perfect sense for gardeners who are strapped for time. That’s because artificial grass requires minimal maintenance and frees gardeners to focus on other tasks such as tending to flower gardens, home maintenance, and business. It’s a smart choice that saves both time and water, and it looks good too!
Artificial Grass Choices
There are several types of artificial grasses all designed for different purposes and for varying budgets. So before proceeding with an artificial turf installation, you’ll want to determine what type of turf you need. Here are three of the most popular categories for homeowners:
- Landscape: This type of grass looks most like natural grass with colors mimicking the appearance of a natural lawn.
- Pets: A turf that is designed to minimize odors from pets’ waste with effective drainage tools and pet-safe products that allow the waste to be washed away.
- Playground: A very dense turf laid over a padded layer designed to withstand rough and tumble use while offering a higher level of protection for falls.
With advances in technology, it’s difficult to distinguish modern artificial grass from a natural lawn. The most common raw material used to manufacture turf used for residential lawns is polyethylene fibers, which are soft and resilient. This material is long lasting and resists degradation from ultra violet rays, mildew, and mold. In addition, it stands up well to heavy foot traffic. Today, homeowners have over 17 different types of artificial grass to choose from. Including varieties made especially for garden landscapes, sports surfaces, pets, and putting greens.
The primary benefit to the time-pressed homeowner is the lower maintenance requirements that come with an artificial grass installation. With a synthetic lawn, grass never needs mowing, nor is there any requirement to spend money on upkeep with landscapers, sprinklers, fertilizers, and pesticides.
With that being said, it’s not maintenance-free altogether. There is still a need for regular grooming and the repair of accidental damage if it ever occurs. If animals defecate on the lawn, the affected area will need to be cleaned and sprayed down. Leaves and other debris should be blown off or brushed away.
Another significant benefit that comes with an artificial grass installation is the associated water savings. In California, it is estimated that most of the domestic water is used for watering lawns and gardens and as water prices rise utility savings will be substantial for those homeowners who choose to make the switch.
In areas where water restrictions are imposed, natural grass lawns are wilting and grasses are dying off. In these cities and towns especially, the installation of artificial grass gives home owners the opportunity to once again have attractive green lawns year round that bring color to their home and provide a safe and comfortable surface for their children and pets to play.
It’s possible for handy home owners to complete an artificial grass installation themselves. Our Easy Turf Install DIY Guide shows you how to go about it. Basically, all existing grass and vegetation has to be cleared away and herbicide sprayed to prevent grass and weeds from growing. Next, a base layer is normally made from crushed stone covered by a weed barrier. The turf is laid on top of that layer with the fibers going in the same direction. Seaming tape is used to join seams, and the turf is secured using galvanized nails. Finally, an infill material is applied and brushed to provide a consistent finish.
If you live in a state affected by the drought or are living in an area that’s experiencing a water shortage, there is a good chance you can receive a rebate from the government if you install artificial grass at your home. Details about rebate programs can be obtained through The Association of Synthetic Grass Installers or from local authorities. If you are considering an artificial grass installation, these rebates provide an excellent opportunity to save while installing your artificial grass.
It’s a Smart Choice
If you are pressed for time and finding it difficult to maintain your lawn, an artificial grass installation is a smart choice that will save you time and money. This gives you more time to be with your family and do the things you want to do.