The UK’s oldest and most trusted lawn seed brand, Johnsons Lawn Seed is calling on retailers to push the benefits of real lawns as we enter the autumn lawn care cycle and debunk myths that artificial grass is maintenance-free.
With calls to bin plastic grass and research by MyBuilder.com showing 24% of Britons would support a ban on the sale of artificial lawns and many owners now realising what a big financial mistake synthetic lawns are, Johnsons is putting many common claims on artificial grass to bed as retailers prepare for another key sales period.
Artificial grass is free draining during autumn and winter rainfall
Not quite! This plastic carpet may have some drainage holes, but most are unable to absorb the volume of water that the UK has been experiencing with downpours and thunderstorms following heatwaves. And with the autumn and winter weather predominately wet, synthetic, plastic lawns and paved gardens simply cannot cope, putting pressure on drains, especially during sudden rain and storms.
Real grass can cope with wet weather and plays a crucial role in soil stabilisation and erosion prevention during heavy rainfalls, particularly on steep slopes or embankments. The rainfall is absorbed into the ground and as 80% of a grass plant is made up of roots, the more water the turf can absorb.
If a real lawn has become compacted through use, this can cause problems with drainage, weeds, and moss. This can be resolved by aerating, a simple process of perforating the soil with a garden fork to create small holes to allow air, water, and nutrients to penetrate the grass roots.
Autumn and winter can destroy your real grass lawn
Wrong! Lawns have a remarkable ability to shut down when the going gets tough and bounce back when temperatures cool and autumn rain falls. Investing in high-quality grass seed for both the autumn and spring lawncare cycles will ensure it is at its optimum strength for anything that winter can throw at it.
Johnsons’ Super Smart Lawn Feed is an organic fertiliser that contains beneficial bacteria, seaweed extract micronutrients, and soluble mycorrhizae. It provides a rich green appearance and can increase a lawn's root system by up to 150 times. This 100% organic fertiliser, which can be used until, the end of September, revitalises lawns, promoting dense, green, and slow-growing grass for winter.
Johnsons Quick Lawn' with Accelerator is perfect for autumn lawncare, offering rapid germination and establishment with just a third of the water needed for new lawns. This product provides a strong, thick, and healthy lawn, even in cold or wet conditions, with the seed mix delivering 38% more grass within the first seven days and will germinate at lower temperatures.
On the flip side, whilst artificial grass may be able to withstand the rain and bad weather, it only has a limited shelf life and over the years will soon deteriorate and flatten just like a carpet in the home would.
Artificial lawns are low maintenance
Wrong again! Regular maintenance is essential to keep your artificial lawn looking its best. Autumn and winter will mean brushing helps to remove any leaves, twigs, or other larger debris that may have accumulated on the surface. You may also need to wash with a mild detergent if your pet makes a mess and it has to be regularly cleaned to eliminate mud, stains or spills, as well as hoovered like any carpet does to ensure that any smaller particles or dust are thoroughly removed.
Even if a lawn is synthetic, real weeds will still creep through. If you don’t want the hassle of picking them by hand, you will need to have a weed membrane installed underneath which is an extra cost.
A solution for a shady garden in winter when grass does not get enough light to grow
Again, not true. Whilst artificial grass may seem an easy answer as it won’t be affected by a lack of light, there are shade-tolerant grasses that can be used to create a more natural spot.
Johnsons Shady Place is one of the company’s leading products. Ideal for creating luscious green lawns in shaded areas, under trees or next to high walls and hedges, this innovative formula features the Johnsons bestselling mix of Browntop Bent, Strong and Slender Creeping Fescue, Hard Fescue and Red Fescue; combined with the advanced Seedbooster™ coating to completely override this myth that real grass cannot be grown.
Artificial lawns are the ideal solution for winter
Unfortunately, not! They may provide year-round greenery but snow, ice and frost in the colder months may temporarily harden artificial grass. If you have children or pets, it’s important to be cautious of this as it may increase the risk of slips and falls.
A natural Johnsons Lawn goes dormant in winter. Over the autumn and winter period, grass will stay relatively green — even when blanketed with snow. It is advised not to step on grass when it is frozen but even if you do, living natural grass lawns can repair and regenerate themselves.
Keeping real grass in the garden also provides shelter for wildlife during a cold snap. When cutting your lawn for the final time before the shorter days draw in, leave the edges or a patch long for over-wintering insects, as well as allow small creatures to move around safely and shelter.