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How to lay artificial grass

In this article, we take you through the step-by-step process of laying artificial grass, covering everything from preparing the ground to securing the edges.

1. Mark and dig the area

Mark out the area where you want to lay your artificial grass using pegs and string or a line marker spray.

With the area marked out, you can start excavating. Remove the existing turf, then dig to a depth of 100mm around the edges and 75mm for the rest of the area. Leaving the centre of your excavated area slightly higher or crowned will give your artificial lawn a more natural look.

Bare dirt that has been excavated with a slight ridge in the middleBare dirt that has been excavated with a slight ridge in the middleBare dirt that has been excavated with a slight ridge in the middleBare dirt that has been excavated with a slight ridge in the middle

2. Install edging boards

With the area excavated, you can install your edging boards. Edging boards will hold the base in place and give you something to secure your artificial lawn to. Lay timber edging boards around the perimeter of your excavated area and use a spirit level to check they are level.

Once you’re confident the boards are level and square, hammer in timber stakes to hold them in place and use woodscrews to secure them.

Using a spirit level on wood edging boardsUsing a spirit level on wood edging boardsUsing a spirit level on wood edging boardsUsing a spirit level on wood edging boards

3. Weed control

With the area excavated and your edging boards in place, you can now spray the area with weedkiller to kill any weeds.

With this job complete, install landscaping fabric which will keep weeds at bay. Lay the fabric out and cut it to size using a knife. If you need to install more than one piece, overlap the joints by at least 150mm. You can use sand or stones to weigh the fabric down before you install your base.

4. Add the base

With the area prepared it’s time to install your base. For this guide, we’re going to use sharp sand as our base.

Fill the area you’ve excavated with sharp sand, then rake it out evenly. Use a piece of wood to smooth and level the sand, then compact it using a plate compactor. Remember to wear safety boots, ear defenders and goggles.

Run the plate compactor over the sand base until it’s compacted and level with your edging boards. You may need to add more sand as you go.

using a plate compactor to compact sharp sandusing a plate compactor to compact sharp sandusing a plate compactor to compact sharp sandusing a plate compactor to compact sharp sand

5. Lay the artificial grass

With the preparation complete, it’s time to lay your artificial grass. Artificial grass can look different depending on which way you lay it. Take some time to consider which way looks best in your garden and remember to lay all pieces in the same direction.

Roll your artificial grass out over your installation area and trim it to the correct size using a sharp knife.

6. Joining artificial grass

If one piece of artificial grass isn’t large enough to cover the whole area, you’ll need to join two sections together. You can use self-adhesive joining tape or joining tape and adhesive to join two pieces of artificial grass.

Roll back the two pieces of grass that you want to join by an equal amount and place your tape in the middle. If you’re using standard tape, apply artificial grass adhesive to the tape using a sealant gun. If you’re using self-adhesive tape, you can skip this step. Bring the edges of the two pieces of turf together over the top of the tape and smooth them with your hand. You can then lay a heavy object, such as a plank, across the joint to weigh it down until it dries.

Putting artificial grass adhesive onto joining tape between two pieces of artificial grassPutting artificial grass adhesive onto joining tape between two pieces of artificial grassPutting artificial grass adhesive onto joining tape between two pieces of artificial grassPutting artificial grass adhesive onto joining tape between two pieces of artificial grass

7. Secure grass to edging boards

With your turf installed and the joints dry, you can now secure your artificial grass to the edging boards using clout nails. Hammer in nails at 300mm intervals.

Hammering nails into artificial grass edging boardsHammering nails into artificial grass edging boardsHammering nails into artificial grass edging boardsHammering nails into artificial grass edging boards

8. Brush the grass

Once you’ve laid and secured your artificial grass, you can brush it with a stiff broom to help the fibres stand upright and remove any debris. You should brush your artificial lawn regularly to remove any debris and keep it looking great.

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