How to lay artificial grass

UK Home Improvement

How to Lay Artificial Grass

As every homeowner or person with access to an outdoor space will know, a garden can provide a property with a whole host of benefits.

They provide a place to relax, socialise with friends and family and a place to get outdoors while being at home. However, looking after and maintaining an outdoor space can be all-encompassing. 

For instance, if you own a lawn, it often takes a significant amount of mowing, grooming, pruning and general lawn care if you’re to keep it looking its best. With this in mind, it’s no surprise that artificial grass, also known as fake or synthetic turf, has soared in popularity in recent years. Chiefly, this is because artificial grass is low maintenance and needs very little care from the owner.

If you’re thinking of having artificial grass installed at your home, you might be able to save money by installing it yourself. In this article, we’ll explain how to lay artificial grass outlining the best methods of doing so. 

The Benefits of Artificial Grass

As mentioned above, artificial grass has become an extremely popular garden solution in recent years. This is because they offer a wide range of benefits. 

Here are some of the key advantages of laying fake grass:

  • Low maintenance – As referenced already, perhaps the biggest benefit of having artificial grass installed is that it’s extremely low maintenance. There’s no need to worry about mowing, watering or fertilizing fake turf, its natural look makes it easy to care for and be used all year round. This can minimise lawn care, helping you save both time and money that can be used elsewhere. 
  • Water conservation – As there is no need to water artificial grass, it means your property can save significant amounts of water. This can provide a whole host of household advantages including saving you money on water bills, ensuring you’re being more environmentally friendly and conserving water in the rare event of a hosepipe ban or other restrictions.   
  • All-weather use – Unlike natural grass, fake turf remains the same luscious green colour throughout the year. Regardless of what the weather is doing, the lawn will never become faded, brown or muddy. So whether you’re experiencing heavy rain showers, intense summer rays or freezing temperatures, you can rest assured your lawn can withstand it all.  
  • Durability – Artificial grass is very durable and is designed to cope with heavy foot traffic and general wear and tear. Due to this robustness, you can expect quality artificial grass that can last for years to come and which offers excellent longevity.   
  • Great aesthetics – In addition to the range of practical reasons, laying artificial grass can also offer aesthetic advantages, too. Fake grass always offers a lush, green appearance to a lean that doesn’t need regular upkeep to keep its vibrancy. Plus, it will not develop bald spots, faded patches or unsightly weeds.     
  • Reduced allergies – If you’re someone who suffers from hay fever or other seasonal allergies, natural grass can cause problems. This is not the case with fake grass as it does not produce pollen or other allergens. So, everyone can enjoy it even in the peak of summer.  
  • Good for the environment – We’ve already mentioned how water conservation can make your lawn better for the environment, but artificial turf has other eco-advantages, too. For example, as lawn maintenance is vastly reduced, there is no need for the use of equipment like lawnmowers and trimmers which can emit hazardous greenhouse gases. 
  • No weeds – Weeds are unable to grow on most quality artificial lawns, eliminating the need for herbicides or weed killers. This means that you don’t need to worry about the negative impacts of using chemicals in your garden or outdoor space. 
  • Pet-friendly – A lawn should be able to be enjoyed by all of the family, and this includes your furry friends. Most synthetic turf comes in pet-friendly versions which minimise odours and feature filtering technology. Plus, it’s extremely easy to clean up any pet waste without leaving stains or unpleasant lingering smells.  

What You Need When Laying Artificial Grass 

Now that we’ve outlined some of the best advantages of laying artificial grass, let’s take a look at how you can do so. 

Before you begin working on your garden or outdoor space, it’s important you have the right tools and equipment to hand to effectively carry out the work. 

This includes the following:

  • Turf cutter
  • Shovel 
  • A stanley knife 
  • Joining tape
  • Glue
  • Joining adhesive 
  • Tape measure
  • Ground pins / galvanised nails 
  • A hammer 
  • A broom or stiff brush
  • Gloves 

How To Lay Artificial Grass 

Once you’ve got all of the equipment mentioned above, you’re ready to get to work. By following the steps below, most competent DIYers should be able to efficiently lay artificial grass without any problems.

Measure your garden

First things first, you need to measure your garden to determine how much artificial turf you’re going to need. It’s vital you get this right because if not, you could find yourself spending too much money on unnecessary excess grass or will frustratingly need to order more. 

Simply use a tape measure to take the dimensions of your garden. Everyone’s outdoor space is uniquely sized, so there is no right or wrong quantity here. Take the measurements a couple of times so you’re absolutely sure and order a little more than you need. This is so you don’t get caught short.  

Select your artificial grass

Next, select the artificial grass you want to install. There are so many different variations on the market and the right type for your property is really down to personal preference. 

There are also child and pet-friendly products that you might want to consider if you have little ones or furry friends in your household. 

Remove the existing turf

The next step is to remove the existing turf in your garden.

Cut the existing lawn until you’re left with the soil underlayer. Then, dig to a depth of around 40mm-50mm. You can use a turf cutter or shovel for this step, making sure to also remove any large stones or bricks that you come across. 

If you have a particularly large garden or outdoor space, you may want to hire a professional landscaper to assist with this step in order to save time. 

Lay your base layer

Next, it’s time to apply your base layer which the artificial grass will sit on top of. There are a variation of different options for this base layer, including soil, concrete, sand and more. 

You can check out some of our previous blogs on these topics to find out the best ways to lay artificial grass on these materials. 

Install edging

If your property does not have any existing edging in place, this is the time to install some. 

The purpose of edging is to create a clean, professional look while also providing a clear border between your lawn and other parts of the garden. You can purchase wooden, metal or concrete edging from most garden centres or hardware stores, and simply knock it into place in your property’s soil using a hammer at the edges of where the grass is going to go.

Lay the weed membrane 

Next, lay the weed membrane. This is the material that is going to stop your fake turf from growing weeds which could ruin the appearance and overall health of the synthetic grass. 

Lay the membrane across the ground, overlapping joints by around 100mm. Secure the membrane to your edging. 

Add your artificial grass and trim the edges 

Now, it’s time to finally lay your artificial grass. 

Use a sharp knife to cut the grass sections to a suitable size. If you’re using more than one piece of turf, make sure all the grass is lying in the same direction. Otherwise, it will look strange and might need to be redone. We would recommend laying the grass facing the house to maximise aesthetics. 

Trim any excess edges so that the new turf is neat and smooth. 

Join the artificial grass 

Now all the grass is laid out it’s time to join it at the seam. To do this, line up the pieces of grass and use specialised glue and seaming tape to join the turf together. This will give it a professional look without any gaps. 

Enjoy your new lawn

Now your new artificial grass has been installed, there is nothing left to do but enjoy it! 

While there is not much lawn care that needs to be done, it’s always worth keeping your eye on the turf in order to prevent any problems from occurring. For example, regularly remove leaves and debris, as well as cleaning up pet waste. Furthermore, every now and again consider going over the turf with a hosepipe to wash away any dirt or much that may have formed on it. 

We have a whole host of home improvement, DIY and landscaping blogs on our website. Check them to discover more great tips.   


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