Your Artificial Grass Maintenance Guide (Spring Edition)
Artificial grass is a great, low-maintenance option for outdoor living areas and lawns that can be enjoyed throughout the year. But homeowners tend to really appreciate having synthetic turf in the wetter months of winter and spring, since fake grass drains as well as or better than natural grass and there are no wet blades of grass or mud being tracked into the house after it rains.
Having synthetic turf also means that you do not have to spend time mowing, watering, aerating, or edging it to keep it looking its best, and you can instead spend that time actually enjoying your lawn with your family and friends. Of course, all landscaping features require some amount of maintenance and, in the case of most artificial lawns, this includes rinsing it off and fluffing it up about once a month. This will, of course, depend on how much traffic there is on your lawn and whether there are any nearby trees and bushes that drop debris. You may find that you need to clean and groom your lawn a little more often or less often, depending on these circumstances.
Regardless of how often you perform your regular lawn maintenance, there are a few tasks that you should do seasonally to help extend the life of your artificial grass and ensure that it continues to look great and function well.
Here are your five spring tasks for caring for your synthetic lawn.
1. Clear the lawn area
The first step in preparing fake grass for spring is removing everything that is on it. This could be a patio set, dog toys, children’s toys, planters or anything else you currently have on your lawn. Taking everything off your lawn will make it easier to clean and fluff, while also giving you the opportunity to refresh your outdoor living area by rearranging it or replacing worn out cushions.
2. Clean the lawn
Since you likely raked up all of the fall leaves months ago, there probably will not be much debris on your lawn. However, if there are leaves, twigs or other debris on your grass, you can rake your lawn with a plastic rake or sweep it with a broom. Remember: Do not use metal rakes, since this can damage your fake grass.
Once you have removed any larger debris, spray down your lawn with a garden hose to remove dust and small debris. Pay particular attention to areas frequently used as pet restrooms. Regularly rinsing these areas with water will help you avoid unpleasant odors, but you will also want to occasionally deodorize the area to ensure that unwanted odors and bacteria do not become an issue. To do this, mix one-part water with one-part distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle, spray the area with the mixture, allow it to sit for a short time, and then rinse the area with clean water. If you feel like you need a cleaner with a little more oomph, try something like Urea Z, which is a microbe-based cleaner that removes urine odors through a biological process that breaks down urea into water and carbon dioxide.
3. Check your lawn for damage
If you have been using your wood-burning fire pit or patio fireplace all winter, it is possible that wayward embers were blown onto your synthetic grass. Spark screens can help with this, but it is still possible for something to sneak through the screen or to escape the fire bowl while you have the screen off to add wood. Therefore, spring is a good time to look for any spots in your lawn that may have been melted or damaged from embers.
While you are looking for damage from embers, also check the seams and make sure there is no other damage, such as tears, sags or buckles. A professionally installed artificial grass lawn rarely has issues with the seams, ripping or sagging, but you should still occasionally look for damage to help ensure the longevity of your lawn.
If you find any damage, keep in mind that synthetic turf can be repaired without having to replace the entire lawn.
While Southern California weather certainly allows for spring outdoor entertaining, finding any damage to your lawn now gives you time to schedule any necessary repairs before the busier summer entertaining season.
4. Remove weeds
While you are inspecting your lawn for damage, keep an eye out for any errant weeds that have managed to work their way up through the backing or around the border. Most homeowners do not have issues with weeds coming up through their artificial grass – particularly if they opted to have the optional weed barrier installed – but it is possible that an occasional weed might find its way through the backing material or grow along the edge of your lawn. If any weeds are going to come up in your lawn, now is likely the time you will find them, since the months of late winter and early spring are usually the rainy season for Southern California.
5. Groom your lawn
Artificial grass is a low-maintenance natural grass lawn alternative that allows you to enjoy the look and feel of real grass without the mowing, watering, edging, aerating and other maintenance tasks. However, like any landscaping or hardscaping feature, it does require a little maintenance. One of these tasks is periodic grooming, particularly in heavy-traffic areas.
If you have patio furniture on your lawn or portable play sets that usually stay in one spot, you may have noticed that your lawn has flattened in that area. If you live in an area that gets regular or heavy snow in the winter, you may also notice flattened grass in areas where the snow accumulated and stayed before melting. Artificial grass flattening can also occur in areas that are frequently used as walkways by people of pets.
It is easy to remedy this by simply fluffing the lawn with a brush, plastic rake or broom. This little bit of grooming is all your lawn will need for the blades to stand erect again and return to looking like a lush, welcoming lawn area.
Additional Tips for Preparing Outdoor Living Areas for Spring
- 7 Tips to Prepare Your Garden for Spring
- 17-Point Spring Cleaning Checklist to Get Your Yard All Spruced Up
- Backyard Spring Cleaning Checklist Guide: 20 Tips to Successfully Conquer It