This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

September 21, 2014

Maintaining artificial turf (fake grass)

After the heavy rains this past month in the Phoenix, Arizona area, there is a lot of work to be done, mowing grass. But not here.

I've had artificial turf (fake grass) here for seven years and I love it. If you're thinking of getting it, do so. If you're concerned about its installation and maintenance, here it is:

• Have it professionally installed. It's not carpet. And it sits on a thick layer or well-compacted granite sand. Mine was done right. I've seen it done wrong, and it's pretty painful to look at. They did it so right here that people have walked on it, and had to reach down and touch it to believe it was plastic. And by the way, if you're wondering about rain and, uh, other stuff (like dog piddle), relax. Artificial turf is perforated, so it flows through.

• Leave it alone. I blow the leaves off of it every once in a while, but this is one instance where laziness is best. *Too perfect* spotless artificial turf looks, well, artificial. Leave some leaves lying on it. Nowadays I'm noticing that some artificial turf comes with a few yellow *blades* of grass mixed in.

And there you go. I love the look of grass, but I hated the mess. My garden is very shady by afternoon so grass didn't grow very well, anyway. And at this time of year I had to over-seed the Bermuda grass, which meant buying grass seed, putting down fertilizer, and watching birds make everything even messier.

No mowing for me!
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