Artificial grass is a type of synthetic floor that imitates the natural look and feel of real grass while keeping maintenance at a minimum.
We understand how time-consuming maintaining a natural grass lawn can be, which is why artificial grass is the alternative we recommend. But with so many types and prices for artificial grass, figuring out what artificial grass would work best for you seems impossible.
In this guide, we’ll help you learn more about artificial grass and how to choose the best artificial grass for your application and needs.
Artificial Grass – What Is It and How to Pick the Best for Your Property
Artificial grass is a type of flooring made of synthetic fibres that look similar to real grass. Artificial grass has green blades of varying heights. It also incorporates a tough backing where the blades are stitched on.
For a realistic look and feel, modern artificial grass has a brown thatch that looks like dead grass.
Fake grass has been around since 1966. It was first installed in the Houston Astrodome, an indoor multipurpose sports stadium. At that time, the stadium’s management failed to maintain real grass, so they decided to look for a more practical alternative.
Types of Artificial Grass
There are many types of artificial grass available on the market. They typically differ in the material they’re made from. These include:
Polyethylene Artificial Grass
Polyethylene artificial grass is considered an excellent option for anyone who wants to install fake grass on a budget. Polyethylene artificial grass looks great, and its texture is super soft, to the point that you won’t be able to tell it apart from natural grass. It requires occasional brushing to keep it in good condition, though.
Polypropylene Artificial Grass
Polypropylene artificial grass is even cheaper than polyethylene alternatives. However, it’s not as durable as other types. So, we’d recommend opting for polypropylene grass only if the area is small or barely used.
Nylon Artificial Grass
Nylon artificial grass is very durable, making it a good option for kids’ playgrounds and lawns where pets live. It’s a strong plastic fibre that’s very resistant to the elements.
Best Features of Artificial Grass You Should Look Out For
Here’s everything you need to keep in mind when shopping for artificial grass:
Artificial grass comes in 1-5m width rolls, so you must measure your garden to determine how many rolls you need. For instance, if your garden is 12m wide, you’ll need to buy 3x4m wide rolls. Similarly, a 6m wide garden requires 2x3m wide rolls.
Infill vs Non-infill
Some types of artificial grass require sand infill, while others don’t. The sand infill is often needed to assist the blades in standing up. However, most modern artificial grass manufacturers now make non-infill artificial grass that doesn’t require sand.
Artificial grass made from a combination of polypropylene and polyethylene features the best of both worlds. It’s affordable, flexible, dense, and looks great. It also exhibits better heat-resistant capabilities and attracts less dirt. Not to mention, polyethylene is mould-resistant and translucent, so it offsets the bad properties of polypropylene.
On a side note, we’d recommend that you stay away from PP (polypropylene/polyethene) artificial grass as it’s low-quality, may break easily, and accumulates dirt quickly.
While many people care more about pile height than weight when choosing a suitable artificial turf, it still shouldn’t be overlooked. Artificial grass with higher stitch rates and gauge tends to be heavier than other types of artificial turf. This is because you’re essentially getting denser grass. In other words, there’s more grass in every square metre of the roll.
Artificial turf with a high stitch rate is dense and high quality.
The stitch rate is basically the number of stitches for every square metre of grass. Since artificial grass is made from latex and plastic, the higher the number of yarns, the denser the turf becomes.
Nevertheless, low stitch grass is still not that bad for budget-minded consumers, especially if it’ll be used in small gardens.
Artificial grass rolls come in different pile heights.
35mm artificial grass tends to look greenish and lively. 35mm grass is also pretty soft. It’s a good choice for gardens, schools, and playgrounds.
30mm fake grass, on the other hand, is intended for heavy usage, making it suitable for pools, pets, and terraces. It gives the place a “more established” look and feel.
Artificial grass is considered environmentally friendly as it doesn’t need to be fertilised or mowed. This results in a lower carbon footprint and energy consumption rate.
Just because artificial grass is synthetic doesn’t mean it has to look so fake. The colour here can make all the difference.
You can find artificial grass in various shades of green, but we’d recommend sticking to the tone that mimics real grass the most.
In addition, make sure that you get artificial grass with brownish blades that resemble dead grass.
Also, consider getting some samples of different coloured artificial grass before making an order. This way, you’ll be able to distinguish between different shades and figure out which is too bright or too dark.
When deciding on the best artificial grass for your lawn, you must take safety into consideration.
One of the most crucial safety factors is fire resistance. After all, you don’t want your weekend barbecue to end as a disaster.
Luckily, most modern artificial grass types are fire-resistant, as long as you get high-quality grass from trusted suppliers. You might want to ask if the grass is fire resistant or not before buying, just to be on the safe side.
Pros and Cons of Artificial Grass
Now, let’s take a quick look at the advantages and disadvantages of artificial grass::
Benefits of Using Artificial Grass
Here are some of the perks of installing artificial grass:
- Artificial grass can prevent your house from getting dirty: How many times have your kids or pets play in the garden and then come inside to ruin the carpeting with mud? Probably a lot. With artificial grass, you won’t have to worry about that.
- All-year-round landscape. Your real grass lawn won’t stay in good condition throughout the 4 seasons, but your fake grass lawn will, and with even less maintenance.
- Easy to maintain: Maintaining your artificial grass is as simple as cleaning it occasionally. You won’t have to irrigate it or use chemicals/fertilisers.
- Pet-friendly: Dogs won’t dig up your artificial grass lawn as long as it’s installed correctly.
- Zero urine absorption: artificial grass has P.U backing that disallows urine from getting absorbed, making it suitable for pets.
- Say goodbye to weed. Artificial grass lawns with weed barriers will prevent weeds from growing in your garden, saving you the hassle of having to get rid of them all the time.
- Can be installed indoors. It’s really hard to grow real grass indoors unless very specific circumstances are met. Artificial grass, on the other hand, can be installed both indoors and outdoors easily.
Disadvantages of Using Artificial Grass
- It won’t look or smell like real grass. No matter how aesthetically pleasing your fake grass lawn is, it’s no match for a well-kept natural grass lawn.
- Installation can be costly. Even though natural grass lawns also require an initial investment, it’s far less costly than installing artificial grass.
- It won’t last as long as real grass. High-quality artificial grass can last for decades, but sooner or later, it’ll look old.
- Low heat tolerance. Fake grass can get really hot in hot weather, making it intolerable for pets.
- It takes away the fun. Some people just enjoy maintaining their real grass lawns and take pride in it. If you’re one of those people, a fake grass lawn can be boring for you.
Picking the Best Artificial Grass for You
Different types of artificial grasses can be suitable for different applications. Here’s how to pick the best artificial grass for your use case:
Artificial Grass for Residential Gardens
Residential gardens have a low footfall, so you don’t really need the most durable artificial grass. You’d want to focus more on the aesthetics. These include the colour, pile height, and the edging system.
If you install an artificial grass lawn in your home, you’ll barely need to spend any time maintaining it. It’s also worth noting that artificial lawns will make pest infestations less likely in your home without requiring any chemicals.
Artificial Lawns for Schools and Playrooms
Schools and playrooms have a high footfall, requiring more durable artificial grass. It should also be safe for kids with high heat resistance on hot summer days.
Moreover, make sure that you choose artificial grass with a soft touch. Fake lawns with hard blades can actually hurt kids when they’re playing around.
Artificial Grass for Sports and Active Gardens
Sports require more durable artificial grass due to heavy usage, which can lead to extreme wear and tear down the line. Ideally, you’d want your sports surface to be designed with performance in mind. Putting greens is usually recommended.
Everything Else You Need to Know About Artificial Grass
How long does artificial grass last?
As a general rule of thumb, expect your fake grass landscape to last for a minimum of 20 years with proper care and maintenance.
Despite requiring much less maintenance than natural grass, synthetic grass still requires periodic cleaning and maintenance. You should also consider how heavily the turf is used. Areas with higher foot traffic will typically cause more wear and tear to your fake grass than empty areas.
How much do I need to pay for good artificial grass?
Artificial grass typically costs anywhere from £12 to £33 per square metre, depending on the provider and the quality of the turf. You should also consider the installation cost, which is usually around £40-£60per m2 for a average area.
Do weeds grow through artificial grass?
Weeds may grow through improperly installed artificial grass. However, if you make sure that you put a weed barrier beneath the turf, weeds won’t be able to grow even during heavy rainfall.
Can artificial grass be laid on a slope?
Yes, it’s possible to install artificial grass on a slope. However, if the slope is too steep, the process can be costly as it’ll involve additional dirt removal, excavation, and increased support.
What is the difference between artificial grass and synthetic turf?
Artificial grass is usually used for landscape grass in lawns and residential areas. It’s longer and fluffier than synthetic turf, which is more commonly used for sports. However, synthetic turf is much tougher than artificial grass.
How do you get rid of the dog urine smell on artificial grass?
To remove the dog urine smell from artificial grass, you can either use white vinegar or a Zoflora disinfectant. You might also want to consider trying a Reosan janitorial cleaner or a Jeyes fluid outdoor disinfectant. Of course, you should try using water before testing any of these products.
Alright, so that was everything you needed to know about choosing the best artificial grass for your lawn.
Measure your lawn or garden, determine your budget, and think about how heavily the area will be used. Then you should be able to choose the most suitable artificial grass for your needs.
And while the installation won’t be cheap, it can save you drastically on maintenance costs down the line.
So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and pick your artificial grass right now!