Some people are born with a green thumb and a natural flair for creating gardens that wouldn’t look out of place on the front cover of landscaping magazines. Others? Not so much.
Maintaining a garden with a real lawn is either a labour-intensive or costly exercise. Many people are in love with the look of grass but the idea of maintaining a grass-filled garden is intimidating to say the least.
If you’re one of those people, you’re going to love this article. Pack away the lawn mower and get ready to dig into the wonderful world of artificial grass.
What is Artificial Grass?
As the name implies, artificial grass is a set of synthetic fibers designed to look like real grass. It also goes by the name of AstroTurf, plastic grass, fake turf, synthetic grass and synthetic lawn. Once used only in sports stadiums and arenas, these days artificial grass is as common as real grass.
Of course, first generation artificial grass is still used in sporting applications and is frequently found in baseball fields, soccer pitches, hockey fields & rugby fields. Surprisingly, artificial grass is also found inside buildings in places such as indoor play areas, indoor gardens and even as an alternative to carpet by brave homeowners.
The Pros and Cons of Artificial Grass
- No mowing, weeding or watering required
- Environmentally friendly
- Looks like real grass
- Lasts for around 15 to 25 years
- UV resistant blades so no discoloration from sun exposure
- Comes in an assortment of sizes, colors and textures
- Expensive to install
- Hot underfoot on hot days
- Not biodegradable
Answering Your Artificial Grass Questions
If you’ve never considered artificial grass as an alternative to real grass, you probably have plenty of questions. We’re here to answer them! Below you’ll find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about artificial grass.
What is Artificial Grass Made Of?
Artificial grass is most often made up of polyethylene. For those who aren’t aware, polyethylene is a form of plastic that is commonly found in everyday items such as plastic bags and bottles. This means that artificial grass is made up of mainly recycled materials.
How does Artificial Grass Help the Environment?
When people hear that artificial grass is made of plastic—recycled or not—they automatically assume that it cannot be environmentally friendly. But it is! Artificial grass assists in water conservation efforts, eliminates the need for harmful pesticides, and even reduces carbon emissions because lawnmowers account for 5% of air pollution in the US alone.
How Much Does Artificial Grass Cost?
It costs quite a lot to install artificial grass. Think between R70 to R310 per square meter! While this price range is significantly steeper than the R40 to R60 required to lay real grass, you’ll not have to spend a cent on it ever again.
Other Alternatives to Consider
If artificial grass doesn’t tick your boxes, all hope is not lost as there are many other alternatives that are worthy of your consideration.
- Moss: Moss gardens are a unique alternative to grass gardens that work particularly well in spaces that don’t see much—if any—direct sunlight. Moss is fantastically low maintenance as it grows in most soil types and requires very little fertilising, weeding & watering.
- Pebbles: A garden made up of pebbles, also called a rock garden, is a thing of beauty. Such a garden looks unique yet beautiful AND acts as an extra security measure. We’d like to see criminals trying to crunch, crunch, crunch their way onto your property undetected.
- Paving: If you really want to do away with the maintenance of having a grass lawn, opt for paving. Not only does this solve the problem of a grassy garden for you but it also helps set the foundation for outdoor entertainment areas.
- Bark or wood chips: A garden composed of bark or wood chips is another great alternative to real grass. This ground covering inhibits the growth of weeds, requires no water whatsoever and only needs to be replaced every couple of months.
- Decking: Decking is yet another alternative to having a grass garden. While it may not sound as exciting as some of the other options mentioned, it has a phenomenal ROI and can actually increase your home’s value. Much like paving, decking also expands your livable space and acts as an instant outdoor entertainment area.
See? You CAN have a beautiful grass-filled garden without, well, the grass. Artificial grass is affordable, attractive, and almost maintenance free. Plus, it’s eco-friendly, kid-friendly and pet-friendly. What more could you want from a patch of grass?