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Live Lawn Vs. Artificial Turf: What To Know

Live Lawn vs. Artificial Turf: What to Know

There are some people here in Southern California who have live grass lawns, but given some of the issues with water shortages and other environmental struggles, artificial turf has also become popular for people who want the appearance of grass without the water-sucking upkeep.

There are some advantages and drawbacks to each option, so if you’re looking at doing some landscaping in the near future, here is some of the information you should consider when deciding between natural and artificial grass in Los Angeles, CA.

Ongoing maintenance

One of the most important considerations to take into account is the kind of ongoing maintenance you’ll need to perform on each type of surface. Grass lawns must be mowed during the summer, and you’ll probably need to water them frequently as well, considering the dryness of our California climate. Fertilization is also important to make sure it grows evenly and thickly and to keep out weeds, and insecticide may occasionally be required to prevent pests from settling in your lawn. The downside here is that depending on the time of year and the conditions, there may be limitations on your ability to water your lawn.

Artificial turf does not require any watering, mowing, fertilizer or insecticide. If it gets dirty, it can be hosed off. You also don’t have to worry about tracking mud into your home. You’ll still need to rake away leaves and debris, and you might need to use a broom to lift areas where the blades flatten out over time.


The installation of artificial turf will cost quite a bit more than sod for new grass. Turf requires you to dig up your existing yard, putting down a layer of sand and leveling the surface, adding a layer of rubber pellets and then laying the artificial turf on top of all of it.

However, keep in mind that ongoing maintenance requirements will result in a natural lawn costing significantly more in the long run.


Natural grass definitely has the aesthetic edge over artificial turf. While the appearance of turf has certainly come a long way from where it once was, it still can’t measure up to the real thing in terms of appearance.

The feeling of artificial turf is also very different than the feeling of natural grass. While it can still be comfortable to walk on with your bare feet, it’s definitely not the same feeling as walking on a lush natural grassy surface. Even the sound is different—there’s more of a rustling or crunching noise with artificial turf than there is with grass.

Environmental impact

We’ve already mentioned the need to water grass regularly here in Southern California, which can lead to some harmful environmental effects. Real grass also requires more fertilizers and insecticides, which can increase its environmental impact. However, you have to consider the materials used to create synthetic options, which, depending on the kind of artificial turf you go with, might not be the most environmentally-friendly option.

For more information about choosing between artificial turf and real grass in Los Angeles, CA, contact RainforestLA, Inc. today.

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