The Guardian carries an article about the evils of artificial turf and how it is being used more widely in the UK for various reasons, one of them being for keeping up with the Joneses. Who would have thought the the country that gave the world the ideal of the perfect lawn would stoop so low? The evils are plentiful: from the degradation of the product into microplastics, denying insects and creepy-crawlies their natural habitat and subsequently birds a source of food, to the difficulty of recycling the acres and acres of worn out, shaggy plastic grass.
The claimed environmental benefits to using artificial grass, like it doesn’t need to be mowed (with fossil fuel mowers), or watered (water stress due to climate change), nor does it require fertilizers or herbicides is only correct to a point. Mowing is necessary, for sure, but lawns can also be maintained without those negative practices and products. It would also help if neighbors and various home owners associations wouldn’t be such sticklers for the perfect lawn. Even golf courses are going back to a more natural, sustainable look.
I haven’t watered or fertilized my own lawn in 30 years. Sure, it not pure grass out there. There is clover and some weeds but it is green and maintenance free except for weekly mowings. Let nature rule.