The natural lawn industry also called the turf grass industry, has an extensive list of benefits supporting the continuation of maintaining natural lawns and make the case in favor of real turf grass in our society. The industry points out a number of benefits including environmental, economical and even psychological issues to make the case in favor of real turf grass. They do not however, make a side by side comparison to the Fake Grass For Dogs alternative.
In a survey conducted by The Lawn Institute, they found the following benefits:
Benefits to Psychological Health:
- 86% find that a nice lawn is a positive reflection on the homeowner
- 63% of homeowners feel a landscape is an outlet for self-expression and creativity
- 93% of homeowners rank green space important
Benefits to Regional Economics:
- More than 90% of homeowners surveyed feel that having a groomed lawn improves property values.
- Roughly 74% of homeowners feel lawns and landscapes of neighbors are important when buying a house
- 73% said the lawn is an important consideration when buying a house
In one survey there was a statement that was very interesting:
“These surveys indicate that green space and especially green lawns may be as American as apple pie, hot dogs and baseball”.
The issue here is having green open space. Everybody loves a green lawn, but at what cost?
As a professional landscape designer and contractor, I often recommend to homeowners artificial grass as an alternative to real grass in most cases where the grass area considered is not too large. Since artificial grass costs much more than natural sod, homeowners often ask, “how much more is it?”. I have found that it is generally 2.5 to 3 times more in terms of initial costs. The maintenance costs including the cost of water should also be factored in over time.
Costs however may not be the only deciding factor and that is where the quote about grass being “as American as apple pie, hot dogs and baseball” is intriguing. I cannot cite an actual survey, but I do believe that all costs and environmental comparisons put aside, people would indeed prefer the real thing over the fake alternative. People naturally will gravitate towards something natural when presented with a “fake” substitute.