Learn all about artificial grass, from what it is and what makes it look so realistic to why you should make the switch from natural grass to artificial! We’re here to empower you to make the most informed decision possible when considering artificial grass for your Arlington, TX home or business!
What Is Artificial Grass?
In simple terms, artificial grass is a layer of synthetic fibers designed to imitate the aesthetic look and practical function of real grass.
Artificial grass first appeared as “Astroturf” in the mid-1960s when it was used in the Houston Astrodome. Since then artificial grass has undergone several transformations. What began as an ugly plastic-looking ground cover in a few stadiums has evolved into something else entirely!
Artificial grass, also known as artificial turf, is a synthetic grass made to look like natural grass. It is usually made from plastic materials and is used in applications where real grass would be difficult to grow or maintain, such as in very hot climates, or on surfaces that are too hard for real grass to take root.
Modern artificial grass products are manufactured using materials and colors that perfectly mimic natural grass. This has led to a drastic increase in the popularity of synthetic grasses for both residential and commercial applications. The affordability, minimal maintenance requirements, water savings, and eco-friendliness of artificial grass has turned this incredibly realistic alternative to natural grass into a common feature of homes and businesses throughout Texas.
What Makes Artificial Grass Look Realistic?
Artificial grass is more than just the surface layer of individual fibers that you see, it’s comprised of several different components that work together to provide a realistic look and feel.
Components of Artificial Grass:
- Yarn — Used to create the individual grass blades
- Backing — Holds fibers in place & provides drainage
- Thatch — Cushions turf & supports fibers
- Base — Compacted layer of materials that support the turf and facilitate drainage
- Infill — Keeps artificial grass blades upright & acts as ballast
One of the following materials is melted down, mixed with coloring, & put into molds to produce the thin fibers that become the artificial grass blades.
Curly brown, green, or tan “Thatch” fibers are woven in with the turf fibers to give the artificial grass a more realistic look.
- Made With Polypropylene
- Gives Turf Natural Look
- Help Support Turf Fibers
The “Backing” helps to stabilize the fibers, holding them in place. Not all backing systems drain the same. There are three main types of backing:
- Perforated Backing [Hole-Punch]
- Felt-like Backing
- 100% Permeable Backing
Infill refers to the products placed in between the artificial grass fibers to keep them upright & act as a ballast.
- Placed between artificial grass fibers
- Keeps grass blades upright
- Shields backing from UV rays
The sub-base consists of porous materials that will allow water and pet urine to percolate through the sub-base and into the soil below. We prefer to use:
- 3 – 4” of a class II road base for regular turf installations
- Decomposed granite for pet-friendly turf applications
- Decomposed limestone also works well for pets
Types of Artificial Grass
When most people hear “Artificial Grass,” they immediately start thinking of the lawn from The Brady Bunch or the turf at a mini-golf course. The plastic-looking turf products of the past don’t even come close to the true-to-life beauty of the best modern artificial grass products.
Not all artificial grasses are created equal, and there are many different types of artificial grass, each designed with a specific application in mind. For example, some artificial grasses are designed to be used in high-traffic areas, while others are designed as pet-friendly ground covers.
Artificial grass is manufactured using one of the following materials:
Here’s a more detailed look at each type of material and what they offer.
This is the least expensive of the three materials used in manufacturing artificial grass. While it may be budget-friendly, polypropylene isn’t very durable and has a very low melting point. Polypropylene is a good material for the “Thatch” layer of artificial grass.
Most quality artificial grass products have “Fibers” that are made out of polyethylene. While more expensive that polypropylene, polyethylene provides a much more natural and realistic artificial grass that’s softer and more durable. Artificial grass that’s made of polyethylene is perfect for a variety of applications, including:
Nylon is the most expensive of the three materials used in artificial grass, but it’s also the most durable. Nylon artificial grass is perfect for high-traffic areas or applications where durability is key, such as on sports fields, bocce ball courts, backyard putting greens and commercial landscapes.
Ready to Begin Your Artificial Grass Journey? Let's get there, together!
It’s not always easy to find the right artificial turf company to make your dream yard a reality. At Arlington Turf Installer’s we do quality work, stick to our deadlines & have a trusted team so you never have to worry about who is working on your yard.