The lawn in my small back garden was never exactly Wimbledon Center Court – not that smooth velvety green so beloved by English painters and poets. The grass was always of the thicker variety which grows best here, rather coarse but excellent for sunbathing, barbecuing and being played on by football-mad grandsons.
However over the years the lawn deteriorated badly – too much football and not enough sun or water. Being a very shaded garden with tall trees around it for privacy, not too much sunlight reached the ground and with the water shortage becoming more and more acute, culminating in a total ban on watering lawns, the lawn was looking very superannuated – large bare patches of brown soil with a few braver chunks of green struggling to survive. In short it looked terrible.
We knew in our hearts that synthetic grass was the answer. But it takes a leap of faith to go from loving the natural look of real grass, however threadbare it is, to putting down what is basically artificial and plastic.
There are people who shudder at the thought of silk flowers however beautiful they are. Some people mix artificial and real to great effect. We decided we must overcome this prejudice against the synthetic to get the convenience of year round beautiful grass without water.
I think the clincher was when we got our water bill for the months we had not been allowed to water the lawn. It was down 600 shekels from the previous year. That did it and next thing we were on the phone to the people who advertise every week in The Jerusalem Post, Deutsch Technology (no relation) and made an appointment.
Their representative, Rachamim, a delightful and charming man, came round, inspected the area and brought several samples of grass we could choose from. There is even one which looks as though it badly needs watering, with patches of brown for a very realistic look.
We picked something very green and smooth and within a few days the workers turned up to put it down. It's quite a complicated process and it took a day and a half but the results are just superb.
Now we look out through the French windows at our beautiful lawn, knowing it will be just as beautiful next week and next year without depending on the vagaries of sun and rain. We've thrown out the lawn mower – and we are absolutely sure we made the right decision.
Bertie our dog leaps across it just as he did the real lawn and seems not to have registered that it is different. And the grandchildren can play on it, (or just pose on it, see picture) to their hearts' content.
The bonus of never having to water or trim it is a real blessing. And every time we look at its impeccable greenness we are so glad we did it.