Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Grass Lawns

By the team at Angi.com

Bright, green grass lawns are largely considered a staple of well-kept yards. Unfortunately, grassy lawns require enormous amounts of water and fertilizer to keep green and beautiful. In fact, experts estimate that around 50 percent of water used for outdoor household use is wasted from inefficient watering methods. Additionally, fertilizer runoff can be harmful to the surrounding wildlife. 

We all want lush, attractive lawns surrounding our homes. So how do we achieve that while cutting back on water waste and fertilizer usage? 

Thankfully, there are plenty of eco-friendly alternatives to the grassy lawn. Native plants, ground covers, and sustainable landscaping materials can all help you reduce the size of your grass lawn or replace it altogether. 

Angi.com put together these visuals below on alternatives to grass lawns to help you get inspired by all the eco-friendly and sustainable options available to reduce waste while still cultivating a thriving yard. 

1. Native Garden Ideas

Beds of native wildflowers, shrubs, and ornamental grasses can bring pops of color, unique shapes, and interesting textures to your yard while also replacing sections of grass. Native plants are well-adapted to the surrounding soil, so they will require less maintenance to keep healthy. You can also pick and choose which flowers are most likely to attract pollinators to support your local environment. 

native garden ideas

2. Unique Ground Cover Ideas

Ground cover plants grow low to the soil and make attractive lawn replacements. Clover, creeping thyme, and moss are all excellent examples of ground covers that can enrich your soil, are safe for pets, and look lovely around garden paths or trees. Ground covers don’t require any mowing, and often don’t need as much water as grass to maintain.

unique ground cover ideas

3. Sustainable Lawn Ideas

Finally, replacing your grass lawn with non-plant materials is a valid option. Sand, pea gravel, and high-quality artificial grass will allow you to cut back on water the most. Plus, with a little planning, you can make creative and eye-catching landscaping designs with these low-cost materials. Recycled mulch is another eco-friendly option that can serve as a bed for flowers or a unique walkway. 

sustainable lawn ideas

With any of these options, you can start to grow a more eco-friendly yard while adding attractive elements to your outdoor space.