Fake Grass is Really Gaining in Popularity…

June 6, 2013

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If you live in a low-water area, or if you’re just tired of constant lawn maintenance, you’re in good company. More home owners are saving time, water — and their backs — by switching from real grass to artificial turf.

Synthetic grass for landscaping and recreation is growing 10% to 15% a year in the U.S. That means more and more home owners are using fakes for:

  • Lawns
  • Dog runs
  • Play areas
  • Pool surrounds
  • Rooftops
  • Putting greens
  • Decorative borders between patio pavers

 

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Faking It is Right for You If…

 

  • You’re tired of watering, weeding, fertilizing, and cutting real grass.

 Your summer water bills are too high.

  • You don’t want to use chemical fertilizers and herbicides.

 You believe artificial grass looks as good as real grass — maybe better.

 

 

What Exactly is Artificial Grass?

 

Fake grass consists of filaments threaded into a backing that lets water through. The backing is laid on a drainage layer, usually compacted gravel, and fastened along the perimeter. Then it’s filled with recycled crumb rubber or sand to keep it from blowing away in a stiff breeze.

Today’s synthetic grass is made of nylon, polyethylene, or polypropylene that’s colored to look like various species.

Synlawn, one of the largest manufacturers of synthetic grass, offers: SYNBermuda, SYNFescue, SYNZoysia — you get the idea. Some grasses even have a thatch layer that makes a yard look less Stepford-like and more realistic.

 fake grass

 

Let’s Talk Money

 

Artificial grass comes with a big upfront cost — $5 to $20 per sq. ft., installed. Once it’s down, it’s free for the next 15 to 25 years.

Professionally laid sod, on the other hand, costs only 14-60 cents per sq. ft. But that’s where expenditures (and upkeep) begin. You’ve got to water, mow, fertilize — all of which cost money and take time. So let’s crunch some numbers on a hypothetical 500-sq.-ft. yard.

 

First year cost:

Install artificial grass ($12.50 per sq. ft. average) $6,250
Install natural sod (37 cents per sq. ft. average) $185

 

Annual costs:

Artificial grass total: $0

 

Watering ($15 per month, 6 months a year) $90
Fertilizing (20 cents per sq. ft.) $100
Gardener/Lawn Man ($25/week for 26 weeks) $650
Natural sod total: $840

 

So, it would take about 7 years for maintenance-free artificial grass to recoup its initial cost. If you’re planning on staying put for longer than that, you’ll begin to save money each year.

 

Alternatives to Fake Grass…

Low-Maintenance Turf Grasses

Natural Lawn Replacement Ideas

Read the full article here: http://www.houselogic.com/home-advice/lawns/fake-grass/#ixzz2UAKqWKl2

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