Artificial grass is becoming more and more popular as a low-maintenance way to create a lush-looking lawn, and it’s particularly well-suited to situations where a traditional living lawn is difficult to achieve. This guest post explains the basics of artificial grass, and covers some key outdoor challenges that can be tackled using it.
Garden styles and functions vary enormously, and of course every garden is unique in its own way. That said, grass in some form plays a significant role in the vast majority of gardens.
While people have many and various ideas about what a garden might be framed with – trees, flower beds, water features, or decking, to name just a few – in most people’s mind a garden isn’t a garden without a wide and long body of grass, front and centre. But this comes with a whole host of maintenance and upkeep issues. This need for time and effort is often something that people have resigned themselves to, without fully considering a lower-maintenance alternative.
What is artificial grass?
The name artificial grass gives the start of an explanation, but it also opens up a whole host of questions.
What’s it made from? While modern technology has led to many varieties of artificial grass, the underlying structure remains relatively consistent. Most forms of artificial grass are made of polythene fibres, so it’s non-slip and gentle on the feet (and knees). This makes it a good option for family gardens.
Does it drain? Modern artificial grasses are porous, letting the rain slide through into the groundwater beneath. This keeps the ground healthy, avoids puddles of collected water, and provides a good playing surface regardless of the weather.
Does it need looking after? Not nearly as much as your regular lawn. Obviously artificial grass won’t grow, but you do have to keep on top of fallen leaves and give it a hose down occasionally. Compared to the mowing, weeding and watering that a living lawn requires, the maintenance is a breeze.
How long can it last? That depends on things like how much you use it, and what ‘use’ means for you, but many modern artificial grasses can last up to ten years, and potentially even double that.
What about bonfires & barbecues? Not on top of an artificial lawn. Nearby perhaps, if you have a source of water nearby to put things out quickly, but the fibres that most artificial grasses are made from make it a very bad idea to keep open flame sources nearby.
Can I use artificial grass in places where traditional grass won’t grow? Absolutely, this is where artificial grass really comes into it’s own. Here are some common tricky outdoor spaces that are ideal for artificial grass.
Assuming gardens require living grass creates a large problem when it comes to rooftop spaces. The weight of the soil you need to keep a natural lawn healthy, green, and enjoyable is often too much for a building to safely bear. Grass needs plenty of nutrients and water to keep growing, and when it is in an isolated ecosystem, not surrounded by open soil and trees, deeper and richer soil bases are required.
Artificial grass circumvents this problem with a massively lower weight requirement, and when combined with appropriate underlaid drainage tiles, the roof can be a sanctuary of greenery and calm, allowing your gardening efforts to focus on the more colourful and eye-catching elements of your rooftop retreat.
Safe and sporty kids
If your children are sports-mad, you’re probably all too familiar with the associated damage to your lawn caused by heavy use in a particular spot, not to mention the muck factor of playing on wet grass. Artificial grass could well be the answer; whether you want a brilliant bounce for tennis, or a fantastically firm penalty spot for a micro-Wembley, artificial grass is up to the task and will remain lush and green with minimum cleanup required.
We all love our four-legged friends, and they’re often a major consideration when designing our gardens. Unfortunately, they’re rather good at taking too much of the outside indoors with them, and natural grass lawns are often the primary source of this mess.
Artificial grass comes to the rescue again here. It’s really durable, made with pet safe materials, and provides a healthy bounce surface, giving your pet an excellent outdoor play experience. You can enjoy romping around with them and stay nice and clean too!
Have you used artificial grass to tackle a tricky outdoor space?
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