Yeah, we know what you're thinking. Eeew, gross. I like a natural lawn. But especially in hot climates (read Los Angeles) or in places where the grass is mostly just there to "look nice" (that patch of lawn between the sidewalk and the curb, for example), artificial grass might be the most eco-friendly choice...
- It never needs watering: This a big plus in areas, like LA, where strict water ordinances have recently been put into place.
- It's come a long way, baby: Unlike the prickly stuff of your youth, artificial grasses have been refined, closely resembling Mother Nature's handiwork and, in contrast to many arguments, there are many options available made from recycled and recyclable materials that do not contain VOCs.
- You have pets: Your lawn will look nice even if you give your pets free rein.
- It's allergy-free: Grass can be a double-edge sword for those with allergies; it looks great but you can barely enjoy it through the sniffles, the watery eyes and the sneezing.
- Low maintenance: No mowing, no weeding. You're being green and saving green.
While we don't cotton to the idea of using it for your whole home (better cactus/succulent/gravel landscaping), in certain areas (like that sidewalk area we mentioned above), it might be worth considering.
[images: Barbara Thornburg for LAT; for the complete article, click here]