But despite the obvious benefits of a synthetic lawn - no need for watering, mowing or trimming, to name just three - you may be put off by the belief it is difficult to install.

Fear not! With a little bit of know-how, time and a small amount of effort, you can soon be enjoying a lovely new artificial lawn. Laying artificial grass does not have to be a chore.

First, you need to prepare the surface. Start by removing all existing turf from your garden - small areas can done with a spade, but if you have a larger garden you may want to hire a turf cutter, which will make the job a lot easier. Clear away a depth of around 4cm for best results.

Next, add a layer of sand - sharp builder's sand is best - to act as a base for your artificial grass. A depth of around 35mm should do it. Then you need to ensure the surface is level by compacting the sand evenly, using a plank and hammer. This will act as a firm base for your synthetic grass. Note that it does not have to be completely flat - if you want to include gentle slopes, you can do so.

Now it's time to lay a weed membrane layer on top of the sand, ensuring any joints overlap. This will stop any weeds from growing.

The artificial grass is then rolled out on top and trimmed to fit. Most fake grass does not stand straight; it has a slight angle, so for best results lay it with the pile leaning towards the house so it looks more natural when viewed from the windows.

It is also important to stagger the ends of the rolls so you do not create a line. Join the rolls together using the special jointing tape and adhesive, and then fix the edges using pins every 2cm or so. For a final touch, brush your new lawn to make the blades stand up.

Have a look round this website to see how your muddy garden could soon be transformed into a neat, clean and low-maintenance haven you'll be glad to spend time in.