If your garden is small – or you’re confined to a balcony – you may think there’s no room for grass. Perish the thought! Without grass, where will you wiggle your toes? Where will your dog or cat be able to snooze in the shade? Let’s be honest – nothing says “outdoor living” like grass. Artificial grass, that is.
What can artificial grass do for your small garden? Great things, both in front of your home and in the backyard, no matter how confined the space. Yes, even if your “yard” is an apartment or condo balcony.
1. Grass sets the stage
The lush green color and fluffy texture of faux grass are an ideal foundation and contrast for whatever additional colors and textures you plan for your space. Make it the traditional centerpiece – with borders of plants all around the perimeter. Or plant your fake grass off to one side or in a corner to create the feeling of a separate room. Remember, your grass can be any size or shape you want.
2. Use color to add dimension
You know that, in general, it’s best to put tall plants in back, smaller ones in front. But if the plants in front are a bright color or a bold contrast to their background, that creates an impression of greater depth.
3. Create “destinations”
We talk about using hardscapes and plantings to create rooms within your yard. You can still do this even if your garden is small – a cozy reading nook with a comfy chair and side table, dining space for two with table and chairs on the grass, etc.
4. Go vertical
Choosing columnar evergreens, tall grasses, or other plants with a narrow upright habit helps in two ways. Their height draws the eye upward, which makes your small garden appear larger. And their small “footprint” leaves more ground space for your artificial grass, a compact fire pit, or a small seating area.
Espaliered shrubs or small trees and vines on trellises provide an entirely different type of vertical look along fences or walls. You can make vertical planters to hang or mount on walls, out of virtually anything. If you have a sturdy support overhead such as a pergola, suspend a series of colorful flowering baskets at different heights.
5. Raised beds also draw the eye upward
Use rock, brick, wood, or stone to build a raised area in your garden. It can elevate your lawn area, a patio or deck, or create raised beds for plantings adjacent to your grass. Make the edges of your raised beds wide enough to double as bench seating. Add a touch of whimsy by covering those seating surfaces with faux grass.
6. Green up walkable spaces
Instead of a paved walkway, use flagstones or individual pavers surrounded with faux grass to create a seamless transition from your driveway to the front door. Or to create an equally seamless walkway-to-patio in the back. The effect is visually interesting yet uncluttered – perfect for smaller spaces.
7. Embrace smallness
You don’t have to fight your garden’s small size by trying to make it look larger, you can create a calming, minimalist space instead. Let your artificial grass lay the groundwork. Then use just a few plants, in just one or two colors. The soothing rustle of ornamental grasses would be nice. Group them in one area as a focal point, or place them in pots along a path that leads to a small raised deck or patio.
Small gardens can be beautiful and bountiful or the essence of simplicity and serenity. It’s all a matter of scale.