AUSTIN (KXAN) — Coming off of a hot and dry summer that won’t be our last, people are looking for new ways to save water and at the same time keep their grass green.
Coming after a very hot and dry summer with tight water restrictions, the idea of artificial turf that you don’t have to water might sound appealing.
That idea seems to be spreading.
“Over double from last year to this year is what we’ve done in business so far,” said Patrick Walthall, owner and operator of Lone Star Turf.
“Typically, we do have a slower season in the wintertime. As of right now. It’s not looking like that’s going to happen this year,” added Walthall.
In fact, he says his business gets busier when it rains a lot or hardly at all.
According to Walthall, “I think the hotter and drier it gets. And also the wetter it gets. Mud is a huge deal.”
The turf he installs is made of polypropylene, but putting green surfaces are made of nylon to allow the ball to roll.
Artificial turf can be expensive,
Walthall quoted, “An average backyard… about $10,000 to get installed artificial turf.” By “average” backyard he says between 1,000-1,500 square feet.
But it can also save you money on watering and time spent on mowing.
Austin homeowner and area realtor Rick Luisi used to have real grass in his back yard.
“It was always dead grass because you don’t get the sun and it would never grow. It looked ugly out here. And it was muddy and messy. And we just assumed stay in the house,” said Luisi from Austin.
Then he switched to turf. His main reasons were…
“Conserving, saving money is the first things and then the mess from the mud from the pool and people walking. They’re wet and their feet get muddy. Now it’s not a problem,” Luisi added.
He also sees the benefits from his background as a realtor.
According to Luisi, “I’ve shown houses in the same neighborhood. Some have artificial turf, some don’t and just the curb appeal alone makes it more attractive.”
Artificial turf does have its drawbacks. Among them, it does get hotter than real grass, can fade over time and you have to be mindful of drainage.
Walthall explained, “even though this stuff is permeable. You want to make sure everything’s sloped properly so that water doesn’t flow directly into your pool if you have a pool or flowing directly into a neighbor’s yard.”
So, while a nice natural lawn may be hard to beat, for those struggling to keep their lawn alive, this might make sense, even if you have pets.
“It’s great for dogs, they can pee on it, goes right through, there’s sand underneath it. It’s easy to clean off,” added Luisi.
According to Architectural Digest, a typical artificial turf lifespan is around 10 years.