Artificial grass installation. Everything you need to know
Artificial grass is a wonderful alternative to natural lawns and can look just as nice, minus the regular mowing and high maintenance of real grass. Small or large, any garden can look neat and presentable with synthetic grass. For that reason, more and more people with outdoor spaces begin to show interest in artificial grass installation.
Are you ready to retire your lawnmower and enjoy a fresh-looking lawn all year round? Read on. If you are wondering how exactly artificial grass can be installed in your garden, check our article and find everything about the process.
What is artificial grass?
Artificial grass is synthetic turf that consists of a few layers, with the top surface made of man-made fibers (polypropylene or polyethylene) that highly resemble natural grass. The other layers include backing, cushioning, drainage coating, and infill. High-quality artificial grass is so superior that it not only looks like real grass but also feels like real grass.
The process of artificial grass installation
Getting rid of the weeds and roots
The first step to preparing for artificial grass installation is to get rid of all weeds, existing grass, and other plants (and their roots) that might be getting in the way of the turf.
Otherwise, you risk getting an uneven artificial lawn surface. Also, by ignoring this step you can accidentally stimulate the development of new weeds. Even though artificial grass has a high weed resistance, weeds can still grow through the infill, around the edges, or even through the tiny gaps in the backing layer.
Proceed with manual extraction of existing vegetation by hand. Alternatively, you can spray the existing weeds and grass with weed killer a couple of weeks before the planned artificial grass installation.
Removing the top layer of soil
Next, you need to get rid of the top layer of the soil. For ultimate results, break up the soil with a rototiller and dig between 7 and 10 centimeters deep. This step in laying artificial grass is required because you have to make enough room for the new base.
Once you excavate the top layer of the sod to the new base level, make sure to flatten the surface. A bumpy surface will result in an unattractive uneven lawn. Feel free to check if the surface is flat enough with a standard level tool.
Installing a waterproof border
Adding a waterproof border is one of the most vital steps of artificial grass installation. This border is responsible for keeping your synthetic lawn together, and preventing artificial turf separation and drooping. By edging all sides of the new lawn, the base can stay stable and compacted.
Since the purpose of a waterproof border is to provide support, the materials used need to be solid. So think about installing metal edging, cobblestone edging, or brick edging. Pouring concrete is also a good solution. Whichever option you choose, make sure the border stays below the artificial grass level.
Protecting from new weeds
Another vital part of artificial grass installation is weed protection. Unfortunately, just removing or killing off existing weeds does not provide efficient and long-term weed control. So the next step would be to put a membrane with weed-suppressing properties on the artificial lawn. Installing a weed blocker barrier on the weed-free excavated soil guarantees your artificial grass would be undisturbed by weeds for a long time.
Choosing the right base material
The base is material you lay on top of the excavated area to boost artificial lawn drainage and prevent slumping. Here are a few options to consider when selecting base material to put underneath your artificial grass:
- Crushed angular stone
- Decomposed granite
Once you lay the base material, get a rake to smooth it out. After that, get a garden hose and lightly wet the base, then compact it down with a whacker plate or roller compactor. Use a level to see if any serious bumps need more smoothing.
If you are laying artificial grass over concrete or another type of hard surface, use a rubber shock pad. And do not forget – make sure the concrete surface is dry before you proceed and there is no leftover debris.
Laying the artificial grass
When the base dries out, consider prepping as done. It is time to focus on the main task – laying artificial grass. Check out this detailed guide for the final steps in artificial grass installation:
- Roll out the turf and let it sit for a while until the grass retrieves its authentic shape;
- Measure the lawn space;
- Lay the artificial grass strips over the prepped base and cut the grass strips to fit into each area;
- Join the pieces of turf with seam tape and adhesive, suitable for artificial grass;
- Apply a protective substance (silica sand) over the freshly-laid synthetic grass;
- Spread the silica sand evenly, using a push broom or a stiff bristle brush.
Some additional advice on how to lay artificial grass:
- Avoid dragging the turf over your base (that can unsettle and dislocate the base);
- Edging the artificial grass after laying will make your lawn look neat and flawless;
- Brush the fibers upright before sprinkling silica sand;
- Adding silica sand is a step you should never miss, because boosts turf endurance, extends the lifespan of artificial grass, and protects the lawn;
- The best way to see if there are any bumps or uneven areas on the lawn is to walk on it right after you lay the turf.
The benefits of artificial grass
Now that we taught you how to lay artificial grass, let’s talk about what makes synthetic lawns so great.
If we compare artificial grass with real grass, artificial lawns have so many advantages, it seems unreal. So if you are still on the edge and unsure whether synthetic turf works for you, let us tell you more about what you actually get when laying artificial grass.
Here is a list of the benefits of artificial grass:
- Lush and attractive all year long
- Highly durable and sun resistant
- Requires no watering, no mowing, no feeding
- Requires no fertilizing, no pesticides, no chemical treatments
- Eradicates the muddy soil issue
- Eliminates the problem of patchy spotting
- No pest damage
- Long lifespan
- Quick turf installation
On top of all these benefits, with artificial grass, you can choose how your lawn looks and feels. There are so many types of synthetic turf, you have a wide choice of colors and shades, materials, fibers, length, etc. You even have a say on grass quality, so you can make your lawn can look as natural as possible.
Why consider using gardening services for the installation?
Laying artificial grass might seem like a complicated task, but you only need to do it once. After that, you get to enjoy a wonderful green lawn that is easy to clean and maintain.
While you can easily take on the artificial grass installation as a DIY project, you will save a lot of time and nerves, and avoid potential issues, if you entrust professionals instead. This is where the Professional Gardening team can take over!
For grand results, you need to ensure the artificial grass installation is done right. Moreover, you will need lots of supplies and gardening tools for the job. And if you do not have them already, they could become quite an expense. By using gardening services like ours, you do not have to worry about that, as we already have all the equipment and know how to use it efficiently.
We have years of experience with the installation and maintenance of synthetic turf. Our team of gardeners is trained to consult you, and help you with planning and installing artificial grass in the London area.
Are you ready to transform your lawn with artificial grass?