Benefits of Artificial Turf vs. Natural Grass

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You have a beautiful home! The interior and exterior is so awesome. Still feel something is missing. It’s the greenery outside, to grow a beautiful green turf it would take several months to grow. If you consult anyone they would suggest artificial turf (artificial grass). Before we go ahead lets study the benefits of Artificial Turf vs. Natural Grass

What is Artificial Turf?

History

In the early 1950s, the tufting process was invented. A large number of needles insert filaments of fiber into a fabric backing. Made up of high quality artificial turf uses polyester tire cord for the backing. The fibers that make up the blades of “grass” are made of nylon or polypropylene and can be manufactured in different ways. Cushioning systems are made from rubber compounds or from polyester foam. 

Ford Foundation, as part of its mission to advance human achievement, asked science and industry to develop synthetic playing surfaces for urban spaces. They hoped to give urban children year-round play areas with better play quality and more uses than the traditional concrete, asphalt, and compacted soil of small urban playgrounds. In 1964, the first installation of the new playing surface called Chemgrass was installed at Moses Brown School in Providence, Rhode Island.

Benefits of Artificial Turf vs. Natural Grass

Artificial grass is composed of synthetic fibers that are made to look like natural grass, and have a lifespan of up to 25 years. Some may think that synthetic turf looks too fake, but now there are a variety of artificial grass options available

It is most often used in arenas for sports that were originally or are normally played on grass. However, it is now being used on residential lawns and commercial applications as well.

Today artificial turf (grass) or fake grass is widely used today in residential gardens as well. Since it resembles carpet, any material that is used to make carpet like nylon, jute or polyester can be used to make artificial grass.

Natural grass simply cannot remain lush and resilient if used more than three to four days a week, especially in extreme hot or cold weather. In the summer of Dubai, the temperatures cross 50 degrees Celsius. This, coupled with an escalating need for durable fields that accommodate multiple teams and activities, the high cost of maintaining a grass sports field or landscape, and the need to conserve water, have prompted a rising number of schools, parks and municipalities to turn to synthetic turf to meet their needs. 

It highly recommended to install Artificial Turf or Fake Grass in your garden to reduce your maintenance cost for water and grass maintenance. To maintain green grass in Dubai you need to water at least 3 times per day.

One of the biggest differences between artificial turf and natural grass is the level of care. Natural grass requires several hours of work each week to keep it looking its best. Slack off, and your lawn will quickly advertise that lack of attention.

Artificial turf on the other hand, requires only minimal maintenance. Rinsing the lawn occasionally removes dust and potential odors from pet waste. Brushing or raking the blades keeps them upright and fluffy, even in high traffic areas. And, of course, you’ll want to pick up, rake, or blow away any fallen leaves or other organic clutter that lands on the lawn. That’s about it, year in and year out.

No homeowner, anywhere, wants a high water bill. Unfortunately, with natural grass, there is no way around that. Depending on the variety and its hardiness, an 800 square foot lawn will consume about 150,000 gallons of water every year. Here in Dubai, that kind of water wastage is unthinkable, aside from the cost.

Benefits of Artificial Turf vs. Natural Grass

Artificial turf comes at a cost to the environment. They account for one-third of all residential water use and pose an environmental disaster in dry climates. Our efforts to maintain lawns–mowing, blowing, and trimming with gas and electric powered tools create air pollution that far outstrips the oxygen producing benefits of grass. If you use fertilizers on grass, the chemicals pollute the groundwater.

A true outdoor carpet, artificial grass directly addresses the primary environmental concerns of real turf. It requires no watering, no mowing, and no feeding. Some manufacturers use recycled materials, such as old tires or plastic bottles. And, while expensive, the life expectancy of artificial turf can be upwards of 25 years, making it a less costly alternative to real turf over its life span.

In contrast, an artificial grass lawn twice that size will not require any water at all. If pets use the grass as a potty zone, the only water regularly needed will be just enough to rinse the area with a hose.

Modern varieties of artificial grass are so realistic; it can be tough to distinguish them from the real thing. But there is one major difference when it comes to aesthetics. Fake grass always looks perfect the same height, color and texture, no matter the season, weather, or wear.

You just can’t say that about natural grass. Variations in light and moisture, seasonal issues, pet challenges, and general wear and tear can all cause the grass to appear mottled instead of richly green, or even yellow or dead in spots. Plus, grass grows. The only way to maintain desired, uniform height is to constantly mow.

We can’t ignore the aesthetic value of synthetic turf. Available in an array of blade lengths, colors, and textures (including variegated strands), the new generation of synthetic grass can fool most.

Unfortunately, the initial cost of installing a high-quality artificial lawn often acts as a disincentive. “Most people think artificial grass is costly. They see a complete installation price of Dh75-150 per square meter and get scared, but if you compare the costs over the lifetime of the lawn you are actually saving money.” 

Artificial Grass: Drawbacks

While synthetic grass may look and feel like the real thing some simply can’t get past the fact that it’s plastic. It is hailed for its water-saving benefits, but artificial turf has its own environmental drawbacks. It is a petroleum-based product that creates pollution and waste in the manufacturing process. And, while it is often made partially with recycled materials, it is not biodegradable. After a long life of from 15 to 25 years, it will, ultimately, end up in a landfill.

Critics point to synthetic turf as an environmental heater. It absorbs heat and feel hot to the touch in direct sun. Pet owners give synthetic grass a mixed review. It does not absorb animal waste (but is permeable so liquids pass through to the ground underneath).

Lawn Alternatives

Non-plastic alternatives to real turf that will stand up to heavy foot traffic and offer soft landing for kids’ play areas include: wood mulch (sometimes called “playground chips”), ground covers that require little water and maintenance. 

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