9 Reasons to Consider Artificial Grass for Tiny House Landscaping
Tiny houses are a growing trend across the country. While small houses have always been around, this movement is about more than just taking up less space. It is a movement towards financial freedom, reducing our environmental impact, uncluttering our lives, recognizing how little we really need to be happy, and spending time with our families and friends – rather than cleaning and maintaining large houses and yards.
For all of these reasons, designing your tiny house landscaping can be just as important as designing your tiny house. Your landscaping should be low maintenance, require little or no water, require no large or expensive yard care tools, provide additional living area, and offer an inviting space where you can spend time with your family or entertain friends. If you have children or pets, it should also provide an outdoor area where they can play, hang out and, in the case of your pets, have an easily accessible restroom area.
One low-maintenance tiny house landscaping option that fits all of these requirements is artificial grass, so let’s take a look at some of the reasons you might want to consider synthetic turf for your tiny home.
1. Year-Round Use
One of the top reasons for using artificial grass in any yard is that it can be enjoyed throughout the year. Since there is no mud and no wet blades of grass to track inside, you can use your synthetic lawn during or immediately after it rains or snows. You can also easily remove snow from your fake grass, if needed, or you can simply let it melt, since manufactured turf has drainage similar to that of a conventional lawn.
Being able to use your outdoor spaces at any time is even more important when your interior space may be less than 200 hundred square feet.
2. Expanded Living Space
Tiny house living usually does not involve much indoor space, but it is much easier to adapt to downsizing your home when you have plenty of outdoor space to use. Even a moderately sized artificial grass lawn can double or triple your living space by providing an outdoor area you can use to entertain guests, set up your dining room outside, hang a hammock for an outdoor bedroom, or create a play area for your children.
Many folks choose tiny homes because they want to spend more time outdoors; artificial grass allows you to easily expand your living space to include just as much (or more) outdoor space as you have indoors.
3. More Functional Outdoor Living Areas
If you have ever lived in a tiny house, seen a tiny house living television show or read a blog about living in tiny homes, you know that every single inch of space counts. Storage drawers are built into staircases, pulley systems are rigged up for overhead bike racks, and some folks even have some rather creative, modular furniture pieces that can transform from a desk to a dining room table to a coffee table to a guest bed.
When every inch of your indoor space counts – and is usually accounted for – it is even more important to have functional outdoor living areas you can use to expand your home’s usable space. If you are the type who likes to host parties, it is also important to note that any social gathering involving more than a handful of guests will almost certainly need to take place outdoors.
Artificial turf allows for outdoor living spaces that are more functional and can be used in more ways. For example, with fake grass as your mud-free, easy-care tiny house landscaping, you could have a permanent outdoor dining room or a space where you can temporarily set up a table for an outdoor dinner party. You could create a living room or a hangout space where you spend most of your time, or you could create an outdoor work area where you can update your travel blog, and then easily transform the space into a play area for your children or dogs.
If you plan on using your outdoor living areas for a fire pit, barbecue grill or other feature that involves heat or fire, we do recommend that those areas are set away from the artificial grass to avoid burning or melting the grass. Of course, if an accident happens, the burnt or melted area can be repaired.
4. Sustainability and Environmental Factors
Many people who choose tiny house living do so, at least in part, out of a desire to lower their carbon footprint and environmental impact and to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle. Unlike a natural grass lawn that requires mowing and regular watering, synthetic turf requires almost no water and no gas or electric equipment to maintain it.
The only time you will need to use water on your fake grass is when you need to rinse down a pet restroom area or a spill or when it occasionally needs to be sprayed down to remove any dust that has accumulated.
You also do not have to use pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers on artificial grass. And, as an added bonus, you won’t have to find a place to store a lawnmower.
5. Less Time on Yard Care
Among the many reasons more people are choosing micro house living is to spend less time maintaining their homes and yards and more time with friends and family, exploring the area in which they live, traveling, or simply experiencing life. Therefore, tiny house landscaping needs to be low maintenance and require very little time to keep it functional and looking its best.
Artificial grass was specifically designed to perfectly fit this requirement, so you always have a lush, green, inviting lawn with minimal effort. You will want to read Artificial Grass Maintenance: How to Clean Artificial Grass Guide for the full scoop on how easy it is to maintain synthetic turf but, basically, you are going to spray it down every once in a while to remove dust, use a brush or rake occasionally to remove leaves and make sure your grass blades are standing erect, and maybe pull the rare weed that manages to find its way through the backing material.
6. Requires Few Tools
As mentioned above, storage is at a premium in tiny houses, so there certainly is not space to store things like lawnmowers, edgers, seed spreaders, hedge trimmers and all of the other tools that usually come along with yard care. For an artificial grass lawn, all you really need is a rake or brush to fluff it up occasionally and a garden house to spray it down if dusts accumulates or you have pets that use it as a restroom area.
7. Dog-Friendly and Kid-Friendly Qualities
Synthetic turf provides a level, even playing surface for children and pets, offers a lush, soft spot to lay in the sun, does not have mud or grass blades that they will track in the house, and can be used during or immediately after the rain. That makes this tiny house landscaping option an ideal choice for couples or families with children or dogs who need an outdoor space.
8. It Won’t Die While You Are Gone
Lots of tiny house dwellers travel a lot, use their tiny home as a vacation home, or have two or three spots where they move their micro house as the seasons change. In any of these scenarios, you are going to need landscaping that can survive while you are away without you having to pay gardeners to care for it.
For those who have their tiny homes in a permanent location and who either travel a lot or only occasionally use them for weekend or summer getaways, you really only have two choices: Either you can pay someone to care for your landscaping while you are away, or you need tiny house landscaping that requires little to no care.
Since financial freedom is one of the top motivators for people who go tiny, it is safe to say that most micro house dwellers are not going to want the added expense of paying a gardener. This is where artificial grass comes in: This low-maintenance tiny house landscaping option will not die on you while you are away, and you will always have a lush, green lawn to greet you when you return.
For folks who move their tiny houses to two or three different spots throughout the year, synthetic lawns allow you to always have a beautiful lawn waiting for you at each destination with no added expense of hiring landscapers for each location.
9. You Can Take It with You
Now, some current or prospective tiny house dwellers might be thinking, “Why would I want a permanent lawn if my goal is to have a completely mobile home?”
That is a good question.
Some folks build their tiny homes on foundations or permanently (or semi-permanently) park them in one spot. For these folks, a permanent, manufactured lawn makes sense as part of their tiny house landscaping. Permanent lawns also make sense for folks who own or rent land that they live on part of the year, since your lawn can stay in place while you are gone and will be waiting for you upon your return.
For tiny house dwellers who take their home with them as they travel the country or who frequently move for other reasons, a permanently installed lawn might not make as much sense. So, here is the good news: You can take your artificial grass lawn with you.
Whether you move twice a year or twice a month, you can have a lawn everywhere you go if you opt for synthetic turf. Now, to be clear, someone who moves twice a month is not going to want to properly install a fake lawn on the ground every time they move. While you can roll up your turf and take it with you, properly installing it in each new place requires ground preparation, base materials and new weed barrier fabric. This is an effort and expense that most folks will not want to undertake several times a year. However, this may be a viable option for folks who move less frequently.
For folks who move often, there is another option. Artificial grass can be installed on top of decking material, which means you can install it on a portable deck that travels with you. There are lots of tiny houses that are built with a deck that raises to travel against the siding or that slides out from under the house once it is parked. Other tiny homes have smaller deck pieces that are transported inside the house or in a truck bed to each new location.
While this option may not be quite as nice as having a permanently installed lawn as a ground cover, it does give you the opportunity to take at least a little bit of lawn with you wherever you go. This means that you always have a low-maintenance, no-water lawn for you, your children, your pets and your guests to enjoy.
To get the most out of a synthetic turf lawn installed on decking material, we recommend hiring professionals who can ensure proper installation, avoid your lawn sinking into the spaces between boards, and advise you on how to replenish infill if your deck is transported in a way that would not keep your infill intact.