They say it never rains in Southern California … and unfortunately “they” might be right. The highly anticipated El Niñorain deluge that was predicted to drown out the five-year California drought –although moderately drenching Northern California– failed to deliver to the parched SoCal region.

Real Lawns Losing Their Luster

As the four-year drought heads into its fifth year, water-guzzling lawns are becoming a greater and greater liability and the demand for artificial lawns has consequently DOUBLED. According to one producer of artificial grass products, the drought has made people seriously reconsider the viability of natural lawns.

While real grass might not be growing, the artificial landscaping industry is robust — some reporting 164 percent growth as consumers come to know the many benefits of artificial grass. Says one spokesperson, “There’s no reason to have a real grass lawn anymore.”

Grass Gets Greenlit

Up until recently some cities and homeowners associations would only allow synthetic grass in backyards, making it difficult for consumers who wanted artificial turf throughout their property.  But as it’s becoming clear that artificial lawns are an environmentally sound, water-conserving alternative, restrictions are loosening.

Earlier this week Glendale California’s city Planning Commission voted 4-1 to allow up to 50 percent of front lawns be made up of artificial turf, with the stipulation that it can only be installed by a qualified, state-licensed contractor.

Glendale Commissioner Stephanie Landregan said she supported the new amendments concluding the legislation demonstrates that artificial turf can be used “in a very responsible manner.”

Every Drop Counts

Another factor that’s put a damper on traditional lawns in SoCal are the newly enforced California water restrictions. Earlier this year California Gov. Jerry Brown declared temporary water rationing. More recently, the Governor enacted an executive order to make these restrictions permanent, banning wasteful practices like hosing down sidewalks and washing cars with hoses that don’t have shut-off nozzles.

“Californians stepped up during this drought and saved more water than ever before,” Brown said in a statement. “But now we know that drought is becoming a regular occurrence and water conservation must be a part of our everyday life.”

Here’s where artificial grass can really make its mark. If a homeowner replaces just an 800ft square foot area of lawn with artificial grass they can save 100s of thousands gallons of water over the lifetime of the synthetic lawn.  And the out of pocket investment is low costing just about $5 dollars a square foot.

Lawns for Lounging

Saving money and water aside another reason for the surge in synthetic grass is simply the benefits of low to no maintenance landscape. With life getting busier, consumers recognize the advantage of not spending free time mowing and weeding a lawn. Not to mention the benefit to the environment–the standard residential lawn mower– running for just 60 minutes emits as many pollutants as a car driving on the freeway in traffic for 10 hours.

Ready to get your toes in some artificial grass? Contact us today to request a quote.


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