Having lived in various houses before with gardens, we’ve always felt really thankful to have had decent outside space, especially since having children. We’ve always liked our gardens to be an extra ‘room’, an extension of our home, and now we’re busier than ever we like them to be low maintenance.
I actually really enjoy pottering about in the garden and doing what I call ‘enjoyable’ gardening i.e. tending to a few tomato plants and easy-to-care for flowers and shrubs, but with a busy family of 5 and lots going on during the week and at weekends, all things horticultural need to be simple!
Our last house had a huge garden (over 100ft long), but it was tiered, and whilst we made a fantastic play area on two of the different levels for the children, it was a bit of a pain to manage, and humping the lawnmower up the different tiers wasn’t ideal.
Fast forward to our current ‘forever’ home, and when looking around and taking the garden into consideration, all I was thinking about at the time was whether or not it was flat! I briefly considered that the garden had artificial grass fitted, but it was only when we moved and have now lived here for several months that we’ve come to realise what a game-changer artificial grass is when it comes to children.
Whilst the smell of freshly cut grass is lovely, in every other property we’ve lived in real grass = much mud and dirt brought into the house, and has meant that for a large chunk of the year that the children haven’t been able to fully utilise the outside space because it’s just too muddy.
With our current garden that has artificial grass, the children are able to play outside on it all year round: from football to swing ball, and from paddling pools to simply bringing their usual toys out to play, it’s given us that whole other room that’s ideal for a larger family with 3 children. Even when it’s been raining heavily, the ‘grass’ drains and dries quickly so the children can get back outside playing really quickly. This is especially crucial to us as our garden is East-facing, meaning the bit nearest the house can be more shadowy and therefore would take longer to dry if it were real grass.
When it comes to that low-maintenance ideal, a huge plus point is not having to mow the lawn once a week – in fact, we sold our lawn mower to our old next door neighbours, but I believe that since then they’ve gone and got artificial grass themselves! It’s clearly the way forward.
I get that people are sometimes concerned about using it due to environmental concerns, but we hope to offset that by planting plenty of new plants, continuing with the upkeep of trees/shrubs/flowers already in the garden in the beds, as well as having a few pots of ‘wild flowers’ for the bees and other insects.
Not that we’re EVER planning on moving again (ha!), but if we did I think we would definitely want to budget to have artificial grass fitted across all, or at least part, of the garden.