Those of us of a certain age probably always think of Queens Park Rangers Football Club when the words ‘artificial grass’ are muttered. In 1981, ‘QPR’ famously introduced an artificial football pitch covering and a few other clubs followed suit. QPR ended up removing the covering in 1988 but memories of that era are of ‘burnt’ footballers legs and a more energetic game when teams played at Loftus Road (QPR’s home ground).
But since the 1980’s, artificial grass has come a long way. In addition to a more realistic grass like affect, it’s also slightly more user friendly in the domestic environment. But what are the arguments for, and against, replacing one’s own lawn for this stuff?
It’s fair to say that even now, it’s fairly easy to tell artificial grass from the real stuff, but perhaps not quite as easy as it was 10 or 15 years ago. You can now choose your ‘pile’ of grass, just as you can choose the pile of your indoors carpet. Piles generally tend to range between 20-40mm. And such is the attempt to make artificial grass look as original as possible, that manufacturers are actually making the grass in 3 subtly different shades, just as natural grass would be (with slightly yellowed blades in places and deeper greens in others etc.).
Of course, the major benefits for families in particular include; grass that doesn’t wear down into patches (most suppliers will give a 10 year guarantee on their product), grass that doesn’t ever need watering or cutting and no muddy feet when kids come in after a kick about. Oh, and there’s no weeds either!
The downsides however are mainly that the grass can look just a little too uniform. Does anybody have a 100% lawn all year round? And whilst manufacturers insist that the products allow for drainage, is this drainage as good as the real thing in a real deluge?
In summary, artificial grass can provide a quick and relatively easy solution to a busy family looking for a relatively natural garden area. But, you’d need to allow for costs being more expensive initially than the cost of turf and you’ll never have the exact same look in terms of natural appearance. But, we think QPR will agree, you’ll have a far better product now available than we did back in the 1980’s.