Natural or Synthetic Lawn

There are many considerations when choosing whether a real or synthetic lawn is the right choice for your backyard. Read on for things to think about before making your choice.

Points to consider before choosing natural or synthetic grass.

When choosing lawn, you should think before simply picking based on price or deadline. Each has pros and cons and you might change your mind once you starting thinking in the long-term.

 Placement

Synthetic lawns have their place being extremely suitable to places where a real, natural lawn won’t thrive, such as indoors, on verandahs and patios, underneath shade covers and in high traffic areas.

Depending on the variety of natural turf you select, you can install a grass variety that suits your environment – full sun or shade. There are even varieties that are self-repairing and drought tolerant.

Cost

Initially the difference in cost is quite pronounced. Synthetic lawn can cost between $75 and $100 per square metre while natural lawn is significantly lower at around $10 per square metre, however the ongoing costs of an artificial lawn are minimal while natural lawns will incur costs such as mowing, watering and fertilising.

Natural turf can also be laid DIY relatively easily, which might save you money on installation, whereas artificial lawn can be extremely difficult to lay and getting the joining correct leading to many people requiring professional installation and the cost of that service. Of course, time is money and both installs require a lot of hard yakka, as well as the right preparation and tools.

Look

It’s true that a natural lawn may, at times, not look as lush and green as an artificial lawn but there are varieties available that have been cultivated to maintain a year round colour. With the proper care and irrigation, for example a drip line you won’t see or have to think about, your lawn can stay healthy and green, with that healthy, natural look only real lawn can provide to your garden.

Artificial lawns have come a long way over the years and now have a much better and more realistic look but do still often maintain an unnatural shine.

Texture & Feel

Both types of lawn can provide a lawn that is soft and comfortable however it comes down to the fact that one is made of plastic and the other is natural and it is up to you which of these you prefer.

The major difference in the feel will become apparent during the warmer months when a synthetic lawn will heat up, possibly to the point that it is inadvisable that small children and pets be allowed to play on it, while a real lawn will remain around 15 degrees cooler than bitumen, and will act as a natural air conditioner for your whole property during hotter months.

Environment

An artificial lawn will not act as a filter to prevent pollutants getting into waterways, will not work as a natural fire break around your home nor absorb carbon and produce oxygen as a natural lawn will.

Real lawns will require the use of chemicals for pest and weed control and fertilising, and the run off will need to be controlled to ensure the chemicals do not reach the waterways.

Maintenance

A synthetic lawn may seem to be maintenance free but that is not true. This type of lawn will require ongoing maintenance in the form of brushing, cleaning, particularly if you have small children and pets, as well as refilling twice a year to keep the grass blades standing up straight.

A real lawn will require ongoing mowing, weed control, pest control, fertilising, aerating and watering. Read more here for how to take care of a new lawn.

Some final thoughts

Synthetic lawns can be a great option for those suffering allergies and won’t attract bees and other insects, however this may affect the rest of the plants in the ecosystem of your backyard.

Artificial lawn can be installed where a traditional lawn may struggle, although if you choose the right variety of turf, you can have lawn that can be grown in almost any type of climate and is even shade tolerant.

Choosing lawn can be tricky. Talk to the team at Perth Landscaping to further discuss which option, natural or synthetic lawn, is best for your yard.