Seeing rolling green hills of lush grass is lovely to look at. However, maintaining that natural grass isn't all that easy, especially in areas where people frequently walk.
One option that commercial property owners might want to consider is artificial turf. The advantages are many:
- green color year round
- no dormancy period
- easy cleaning using a chemical solution
Artificial turf sometimes gets a bad rap. Some people think it looks tacky, remembering the NFL playing fields of the 1980s where the turf was lime green and looked like carpeting, not grass.
We’re happy to say, the easy-to-spot artificial grass days are well behind us. Now there’s a wide range of brands and offering — grass colors and lengths — to fit any budget. There are artificial grass manufacturers who make the grass in batches, to look like real grass, even with some brown blades for more of a natural look.
Where To Install Artificial Grass On Your Commercial Property
The high quality artificial turf is not what you see on the rolls at the local home improvement store. The good stuff has texture and natural coloring to mimic the look of real grass.
Artificial turf isn’t something you’ll want to install on an entire landscape, as far as your eyes can see. Pick and choose the areas that make the most sense. These include:
High Traffic Areas
Live turf shouldn’t be walked on in same pattern repeatedly. However, people are creatures of habit and they tend to do just that.
Consider installing artificial turf in high traffic areas, common shortcuts and even playgrounds where the natural grass isn’t holding up.
Commercial properties might consider installing artificial turf around the pool area, a high traffic area.
Take the patio furniture off the concrete and put it on a softer environment, where people will enjoy relaxing on turf that’s cooler and more comfortable than hot, hard concrete.
Dog Relief Area
Some commercial properties use artificial turf in the pet relief area. While pet owners will still need to scoop up the feces, it’s easier to clean this area than regular grass.
With natural grass, dog urine can discolor or kill areas of the natural grass, if it’s not washed off. To clean pet waste from artificial turf, you’d use a chemical wash for sanitization, preferably daily.
The Artificial Grass Installation Process
When installing artificial turf, it’s important there’s a separation between the natural and artificial grass. Otherwise it will look odd.
Installing artificial turf isn’t complex. It’s similar to laying patio pavers. You’ll need a solid base for the surface. The grass can be laid onto crushed gravel or sand. The seams are glued or melted together, depending on the manufacturing instructions.
Our advice? Avoid stressing over the installation and let a professional handle it. Have it done right the first time. You can work with your commercial landscape contractor to find the best artificial grass for your property, and get swatches to consider.
It’s important to consider your property’s drainage when installing the turf, too. It’s not always an impervious surface. If you’re in a high rain area, a good contractor will make sure there’s proper drainage in case of large rain storms.
Artificial Grass Maintenance — What To Expect
You’ll still need to maintain your artificial turf. Astroturf recommends weekly maintenance, for example. This may include using a blower if there’s leaf debris, like you would with any other turf.
The turf of the manufacturing company you go with will give you a recommended list of chemicals to apply. For pet relief areas, you may need to clean it daily. Depending on your contract, landscape maintenance companies will usually do the blowing, but not the chemical cleaning.
How Long Does Artificial Grass Last?
Artificial turf doesn’t last forever, unfortunately. Plan for the turf to be changed after five to 10 years for most commercial applications. (Using it for professional sports, like football, it may only last two years.)
With high traffic areas, the turf will need changing more often than areas where people travel on it much. Once your landscape contractor installed the artificial turf, you’ll want to make sure the seams aren’t in high traffic areas, as those are the first areas to wear down.
GreenEarth Can Help You Decide If Artificial Turf is Right For Your Commercial Landscaping
No need to do all the research yourself. The experts at GreenEarth can talk to you about the pros and cons of using artificial turf. We can evaluate your property and give you a professional opinion on how or where it should be used (or not used). We can help you understand your turf options, given your budget and needs.
If you’d like a consultation or want to know what we can do to help you, give us a call at our Panama City Beach office at (850) 236-1959, or call our Santa Rosa Beach office at (850) 267-0010 to set up an appointment. You can also fill out the online form on our website to schedule a consultation.