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Artificial Lawns

Discussion in 'Garage / Workshop' started by JDMcompliant, May 16, 2011.

  1. May 16, 2011 at 2:02 PM
    #1
    JDMcompliant

    JDMcompliant [OP] Professional Amateur

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    Hey all,

    I just bought my first home in April, and I have a small backyard area. It's all dirt right now, but I'd like to do something with it. While concrete would be easy, it's not very nice to look at.

    Can anyone recommend any artificial lawns/grass, things I should watch out for/do?
     
  2. May 16, 2011 at 2:07 PM
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    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    Are you dead set on "grass"?

    Do you already have a patio back there?

    Pics?
     
  3. May 16, 2011 at 2:10 PM
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    DEEVON911

    DEEVON911 Semi-Pro

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    We have a home show that comes here every year, and I saw artificial grass at the one booth. The stuff looks pretty real. If you don't get up close and really feel it, you would have no idea. I'll have to look to see if I can find the name of the company that was there. Good stuff. Price might be a factor though. I think it was pretty pricey.
     
  4. May 16, 2011 at 2:32 PM
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    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    x2, how about something like a patio with mulch around the perimeter and some simple plantings to liven it up. I wouldn't go artificial grass... as soon as I heard that I thought Brady Bunch :eek:
     
  5. May 16, 2011 at 3:07 PM
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    JDMcompliant

    JDMcompliant [OP] Professional Amateur

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    Not dead set on grass, though I would like to keep it "natural" (as opposed to concrete/brick/etc).

    Here are pics. Like I said, very small area.

    110004607_21_0.jpg

    110004607_20_0.jpg


    I heard it was expensive too...but since it's such a small area, I'm not too worried..


    that's a good idea, but I also would like the artificial stuff to keep it low on maintenance. I like the idea of suppressing the weeds and such with the stuff that goes underneath the artificial grass.
     
  6. May 16, 2011 at 3:21 PM
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    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    With something like that I'd do a stone paver patio for a seating/grilling area (depending on your price point, they can be expensive) and, if you want low maintenance, stone mulch. All you have to do is spray it with weed killer once a year tops. It's basically nice rounded river stone and comes in a variety of colors and would keep your natural look.
     
  7. May 16, 2011 at 3:26 PM
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    Andrew H

    Andrew H What is this "search" you speak of?

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    I wouldn't recommend fake grass.

    With the price of really nice looking fake grass, the "drainage set-up" that's under the fake lawn, the "seamless" install of the fake lawn, it would be a fairly expensive when its all said and done.

    The fake grass gets hot, you would need to rinse it off every once in awhile to get the bird/dog/squirrel shit off of it. If you're going to be rinsing it off, you might as well just be watering a real lawn.

    You don't have fake trees in or near your backyard. Real grass is cheap and easy to lay down and keep alive in CA. Go real.
     
  8. May 16, 2011 at 3:45 PM
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    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    I would do a Paver patio off the back, then in that side section put some River rock with a few plants. On your patio just do a bunch of potted plants of varying sizes, colors, and textures. Also hang some plants on the fence too to make it more 3 Dimensional.

    Looks like you have a pretty good amount of shade there so be sure to pick shade tolerant plants. FYI real grass doesn't do well in shade, Yes there are shade tolerant grasses but they really aren't all they're cracked up to be.

    I would put some sort of Fountain or some other Large "focal point" in that corner then make a sitting area around it with some patio furniture.

    How is the access to the backyard? only through the house? Is there a gate? The reason I ask is access to bring in and remove materials
     
  9. May 16, 2011 at 3:46 PM
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    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    :thumbsup:
     
  10. May 16, 2011 at 3:47 PM
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    Rev720

    Rev720 Well-Known Member

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    Do a brick interpave if you do not want the manitenance
     
  11. May 16, 2011 at 3:50 PM
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    o5iiawah

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    Till it up and lay down 2 pallets of sod. The pieces dont have to touch as long as you dress topsoil between them. That can help you stretch your sod coverage. The roots will grow across the areas in between for a fuller look when it comes in.
     
  12. May 16, 2011 at 3:57 PM
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    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    Tear out that little concrete pad if you put a patio down, I wouldn't bother trying to work with it. A few solid hits with a sledge and it will come out in pieces.

    Paver patios are relatively easy just a little labor intensive to do yourself. They aren't complicated just be prepared for a sore back.

    In your area you don't have to worry about freeze/thaw so a 4" base of gravel/crusher run should suffice (tamped with a tamper). Then add 1" bedding sand on top of that. Screeded flat. Then lay the pavers on top in the pattern of your choice. Then add some polymeric sand in the joints. There are a billion how-to's online and watch DIY network for a few days and you will see it done.

    Or you could pay someone to do the patio. Around here in GA it's about $8-10 sq ft installed depending on the contractor and materials used. You can cut that price in half doing it yourself.

    If you do the river stone, put some some geotextile fabric before you put down the stones to keep the weeds at bay.
     
  13. May 16, 2011 at 3:59 PM
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    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    Looks like too much shade for grass. between the house and the 6ft fence, the only time it would get any decent sunlight would be mid afternoon but judging by the leaves on the ground that tree is probably blocking/filtering the sunlight too.
     
  14. May 16, 2011 at 4:20 PM
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    scocar

    scocar Scouting the perimeter for weakness

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    Back to square one after the 2001. So...
    I think this is pretty much the best direction so far. Since you can't run around in that much space, lawn of any sort (whether you can grow it or not) doesn't make much sense. You could do bigger flagstones for the patio and use smaller ones for traffic areas. Flagstones look natural in San Diego and are cheaper, too. You could set them in decoposed granite, which sets up pretty hard over time and weeds won't grow in it. Don't forget a dedicated spot for the grill!!!! Leave some planting beds/spots in places along the house and fences, and use some low groundcover (this will supress weeds) combined with climbing vine stuff you can train on the fences in a few places. Once established, they will require very little to no maintenance (occasional watering, maybe some pruning once a year).

    You should use curved outlines for the patio/paths to visually break up all the hard right angles. It will make it more pleasing to be out there.

    If you take your pictures to a nursery, they'd be able to set you up pretty quickly with plants that should work.
     
  15. May 17, 2011 at 8:49 AM
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    JDMcompliant

    JDMcompliant [OP] Professional Amateur

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    Thanks for all the great advice, all!

    Yeah, I do get a lot of shade in my backyard. I have a pretty big tree that is just outside my fence, and a good chunk of it hangs over my yard. I think I'm gonna go with the pavers patio, and I may do all the work myself...depending on how busy I am. I've had no downtime as of late, so I may just get someone to do it.

    Anyway, thanks for all the helpful advice! I googled each option you all suggested for reference, and I think I have a good direction to head in :thumbsup:
     
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