Grass Varieties

For more information or to purchase grasses shown below contact your local grower: Where to Buy Turfgrass Sod


BermudagrassBERMUDAGRASS

Characteristics: Warm-season grass - fine to medium leaf texture, dark green, dense and low growing via rhizomes and stolons some varieties tolerate very low maintenance, while others produce lawns of exceptional beauty when given extra care - root system is extensive and very deep.

Recommended Usage: Best adapted to hot, dry or tropical climates - recommended for residential and commercial landscapes, golf courses, sport fields, parks and recreation areas - ideal for homes with children and pets.

Temperature Tolerance: Excellent heat tolerance up to 110(F., performs best during periods of heat - has a winter dormancy period, turns tan to brown at temperatures below 55(F. Poor cold hardiness.

Drought Resistance: Superior - highly drought resistant, but also responds to irrigation in dry periods. Can go into summer dormancy when irrigation is withheld; upon return of moisture supply, will green up again. Some varieties have better tolerance to heat and drought.

Shade Adaptation: Poor - requires full sun for most of the day to grow properly - should not be used in a shady site.

Wear Resistance: Excellent - withstands wear better than most grasses - can tolerate heavy traffic and when injured recovers more rapidly than other grasses.


Maintenance

Water Needs: Moderate - apply at least 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every 4 to 7 days to encourage a deep, healthy root system during hot or dry periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height is 1-2 inches for a quality lawn. Slow growth results in less mowing. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain on the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. Minimal thatch build-up, seldom requires dethatching.

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Prefers an acidic soil pH of 5 to 6.5 - is well adapted to infertile, well-drained soil - very low fertilizer requirement. Fertilize 1 or 2 times a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium - apply nitrogen at 1-2 lbs per 1,000 sq. ft. per year.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Aggressive enough to compete with weeds, reducing the need for chemical controls. Minimal disease and insect problems that can be chemically controlled.


CentipedegrassCENTIPEDEGRASS


Characteristics: Warm-season grass - dense, medium to dark green turf - produces an attractive lawn with a medium to coarse textured grass blade - a very low maintenance grass.

Recommended Usage: Good general-purpose grass for lawns - best adapted to hot, humid and tropical climates, grows well where rainfall is high and summers are warm and humid - popular because of low maintenance.

Temperature Tolerance: Grows well in full sun - very tolerant to high temperatures, up to 100(F, but sensitive to low temperatures, going dormant through winter months at temperatures below 55(F. Cold hardiness ranks between bermudagrass and St. Augustinegrass.

Drought Resistance: Moderate - is sensitive to drought, but has a rapid recovery rate. Can go into summer dormancy when irrigation is withheld, upon return of moisture supply, will green up again.

Shade Adaptation: Good - some varieties maintain adequate turf quality in 60% shade - tolerant of pine tree shade.

Wear Resistance: Poor - slow growth pattern - will not withstand heavy wear - recovers slowly from damage.

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Moderate - apply at least 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every 4 to 7 days to encourage a deep, healthy root system during hot or dry periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height is 1-2 inches for a quality lawn. Slow growth results in less mowing. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain on the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. Minimal thatch build-up, seldom requires dethatching.

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Prefers an acidic soil pH of 5 to 6.5 - is well adapted to infertile, well-drained soil - very low fertilizer requirement. Fertilize 1 or 2 times a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium - apply nitrogen at 1-2 lbs per 1,000 sq. ft. per year.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Aggressive enough to compete with weeds, reducing the need for chemical controls. Minimal disease and insect problems that can be chemically controlled.


Fine Fescue GrassFINE FESCUE


Characteristics: Cool-season grass - deep green color - finest grass blade of any lawn grass - upright growth habit creates a pleasing uniformity - has rapid germination and seedling establishment.

Recommended Usage: Well adapted to cool summers and high altitudes - can do well even in cold and arid climates - often used in mixtures with other grasses because of an ability to blend - frequent component of bluegrass mixtures because it grows well in shade or drought-dry soil - used with a warm-season grass in the South, it provides green winter color.

Temperature Tolerance: Good - tolerates hot and cold weather well - has good winter hardiness - can be used in areas that are subject to widest temperature fluctuations.

Drought Tolerance: Very good drought tolerance for a cool-season grass can go dormant in summer if irrigation is withheld, upon return of moisture supply it will green up again.

Shade Tolerance: Moderate - most shade tolerant of all grasses but needs some sun - best cool season grass for dry, shady lawns.

Wear Resistance: Moderate - grass blades are non-succulent and hardy making an ideal play surface - does not recover well from severe injury

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Low to moderate - water thoroughly (at least 1 inch) once or twice a week during most summer conditions - can enter summer dormancy if no water available.

Mowing & Thatching: Mow regularly with a reel or rotary mower - slow growth habit results in a uniform response to mowing - does best with a mowing height of 1 - 2 1/2 inches - will tolerate close mowing in cool climates. Clippings from frequent mowings can be left on the lawn, as Fine fescue does not develop thatch. Fine fescue can be left unmowed for a "meadow look."

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Tolerates acid soil well, growing within a soil acidity range of pH 5.0 to 6.5 - has the lowest fertilizer requirements of any cool-season grass - apply a high nitrogen fertilizer with 1 lb. of actual nitrogen per 1,000 sq. ft. per year split between spring and fall application.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Most varieties have good resistance to many turfgrass diseases. Mixed with other grasses, fine fescue adds disease resistance to the turf. It has occasional susceptibility to summer diseases in hot climates, especially in moist, fertile soil.


Kentucky BluegrassKENTUCKY BLUEGRASS


Characteristics: Cool-season grass - dark green color and dense, beautiful appearance, medium leaf texture with excellent leaf uniformity. Forms a strong sod via rhizomes.

Recommended Usage: Widely adapted basic lawn grass of the cool, humid, semi-arid and temperate regions - recommended for residential and commercial lawns. Also, widely used on sports fields and play areas, parks, cemeteries, commercial lawns and roadsides.

Temperature Tolerance: Thrives in cool weather and will tolerate very cold winters - undergoes stress during extremely hot weather, but will maintain good color and appearance if properly watered and cared for.

Drought Resistance: Medium - can go into summer dormancy when irrigation is withheld; upon return of moisture supply, will green up again. Some varieties have better tolerance to heat and drought.

Shade Adaptation: Fair to poor - thrives in sunny areas - a few varieties are moderately adapted to partial shade.

Wear Resistance: Medium - recovers quickly from occasional abuse - will withstand moderate foot traffic usage - rhizomes enhance quick recovery, especially in spring and fall.

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Moderate - apply 0.5 to 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every 5 to 7 days to encourage a deep healthy root system during dry or hot periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height 1 1/2 - 2 inches for a high quality lawn. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain on the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. Kentucky bluegrass may develop some thatch at higher nitrogen levels. Prime time to dethatch is in early fall.

Soil & Fertilization Needs: Performs best in fertile, non-acid reacting soil with good drainage. Fertilize twice a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium. Apply 2.5 to 4 lbs. actual nitrogen per 1,000 sq. ft. per year for higher requiring nitrogen varieties also apply fertilizer at 0.5 to I lb. nitrogen per 1,000 sq. ft. every 4-6 weeks. During summer, fertilizer rates should be reduced by 50%. Water thoroughly after fertilization.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: New varieties have improved resistance to diseases such as leafspot, stripe smut, powdery mildew, dollar spot, Typhula blight, summer patch and rusts. If broadleaf weeds need to be controlled with herbicide, the turf should be well established and in vigorous condition. Practically all insects that damage lawns can be controlled biologically or with insecticides.

 

RyegrassRYEGRASS

Characteristics: Cool-season grass - moderately dark green with good density and fine leaf texture - known for its rapid establishment rate - produces attractive, tough leaves and low growing crowns that create a stable turf - easy to maintain.

Recommended Usage: Prefers regions with mild winters and cool moist summers, however, it is highly adaptable and widely used - compatible in mixes with bluegrass and fine fescue to make a hardier turf - can be used for sport fields and play areas.

Temperature Tolerance: Good - newer varieties have greater tolerance to cold winters and hot summers - most vigorous when cool and moist.

Drought Tolerance: Good - without water, will go dormant during a short drought, but will recover.

Shade Tolerance: Moderate - shows tolerance to filtered shade.

Wear Resistance: Fair - suitable for moderate recreation and foot traffic areas exhibiting good initial wear recovery, especially in spring and fail, when growth is rapid.

 MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Moderate - twice weekly, deep watering (at least 1 inch per application) is sufficient - during very hot weather, water more frequently - new varieties have good heat tolerance.

Mowing & Thatching: Low growth habit - mow with a reel or rotary mower at 1 to 2 1/2 inches - new varieties have good mowing qualities and are more tolerant to close mowing. There is no thatch as grass thickens by tillers instead of stolons or rhizomes.

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Highly adaptable to a wide range of soils, from light and sandy to heavy and clayey. Fertilizer needs are low to medium - fertilize with high nitrogen fertilizer every 4 to 6 weeks in spring and fall, applying between 3 to 6 lbs. of actual nitrogen per 1,000 sq. ft. annually.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Most new varieties of ryegrass have good resistance to diseases and insects, including brown patch, leaf spot, stem and crown rust - used in warm climates in combination with bluegrass, ryegrass reduces the spread of major summer diseases. If there is a weed problem, controls are most effective during spring and fall months - be sure that turf is in vigorous condition prior to herbicide application. Practically all insects that damage lawns can be controlled with insecticides.


St. Augustine GrassST. AUGUSTINEGRASS


Characteristics: Warm-season grass - light to medium green color, coarse leaf texture, creeping growth habit, via stolons - robust, fast growing, establishes rapidly - level of maintenance is low to moderate.

Recommended Usage: Well adapted to coastal regions with hot, tropical climates - used in residential, commercial and industrial landscapes.

Temperature Tolerance: Thrives in heat, adjusting well to temperatures up to 105(F - goes dormant and turns tan colored during winter when temperatures drop below 55(F. Very poor low temperature hardiness.

Drought Resistance: Excellent to fair - wide range in drought avoidance among varieties. Can go into summer dormancy when irrigation is withheld; upon return of moisture, will green up again.

Shade Adaptation: Excellent to poor - varieties show wide range in shade adaptation.

Wear Resistance: Moderate - rapid, resilient and stoloniferous growth habit.

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Moderate to high, thrives on wet sites - apply 0.5 to 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every 3 to 6 days to encourage a deep, healthy root system during dry or hot periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height 2-3 inches for a high quality lawn, mow too low and weeds are likely to gain a foothold. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain of the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. A mild vertical cutting may be needed during the warmer months on a vigorous turf that has received high nitrogen fertilization.

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Grows on a wide range of soils, but prefers neutral to alkaline soils - has excellent saline salt tolerance. Fertilize twice a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium. May also apply 2 to 3 summer applications of nitrogen fertilizer, using 1 lb. nitrogen per 1,000 sq. ft. Apply nitrogen at 2 to 6 lbs. per 1,000 sq. ft. per year. Too high a rate of nitrogen fertilization can increase thatch build-up, encourage chinch bugs and brown patch damage.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: A well-maintained turf will provide the best weed control. Some varieties are resistant or tolerant of chinch bugs and to the St. Augustine decline (SAD) virus. Most fungal diseases of St. Augustinegrass can be controlled with fungicides.

Tall Fescue GrassTALL FESCUE


Characteristics: Cool-season grass - medium to dark green color, moderate density - more extensive root system than any other cool-season turfgrass. Texture ranges from coarse to medium for newer turf-types. A bunch-type grass.

Recommended Usage: Very good transition zone grass - adapted to moderately cold winters and warm summers - good tough play lawn - recommended for a wide variety of uses, including residential and commercial landscapes, roadsides, parks, recreation areas, and sports fields.

Temperature Tolerance: Good heat tolerance for a cool-season grass - grows in a wide range of temperatures in the transitional climatic zone between cool and warm climates - less cold hardy than most cool-season grasses.

Drought Resistance: Good - one of the better cool-season turfgrasses, fairly deep root system helps avoid drought. Can go into summer dormancy, with brown leaves, when irrigation is withheld; upon return of moisture supply, will green up again. Some varieties have better tolerance to heat and drought.

Shade Adaptation: Good in transition zone - prefers full sun - moderately tolerant to partial shade. Of the cool-season grasses, only fine leafed rescues rank higher in shade adaptation.

Wear Resistance: Good - suitable for moderate recreation and foot traffic areas exhibiting good initial wear recovery, especially in spring and fall when growth is rapid.

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Moderate - apply 0.5 to 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every 3 to 7 days to encourage a deep, healthy root system during dry or hot periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height of 2 to 3 inches for a high quality lawn. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain on the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. Tall fescue forms very little thatch.

Soil & Fertilizer Needs: Adapts to a wide range of soil conditions - has rather deep extensive root system for a cool-season grass that makes excellent use of soil moisture and mineral nutrients - good tolerance to saline soil conditions. Fertilize twice a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium - apply N at 2 to 4 lbs. per sq. ft. per year. Will respond well to high nitrogen applications to achieve a higher quality turf. Water thoroughly after fertilization.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Varieties are available that are resistant to net blotch, brown patch and crown rust. For weeds, chemical controls are most effective during fall and spring.

Zoysia GrassZOYSIAGRASS


Characteristics: Warm-season grass - leaf texture from fine to medium coarse - color ranges from light to medium green - forms a dense, low maintenance lawn - spreads by stolons and rhizomes - shoot growth rate is slow. Easy to maintain.

Recommended Usage: Hot, humid and tropical climates - can withstand very heavy usage - recommended for residential and commercial lawn sites.

Temperature Tolerance: Tolerates heat exceptionally well up to 100(F, - subject to winter dormancy as it turns tan to brown at temperatures below 55(F, Zoysia japonica has fair cold hardiness, the best of the zoysias, but still ranks lower than cool-season turfgrasses.

Drought Resistance: Moderate to good - remains green and resists short periods of drought - takes heat as well or better than any other grass. Can go into summer dormancy when irrigation is withheld; upon return of moisture supply, will green up again. Some varieties have better tolerance to heat and drought.

Shade Adaptation: Good - slow growing in partial shade, but much better than some warm-season grasses.

Wear Resistance: Superior - exceptionally hardy, has the best wear resistance of any grass - tolerates heavy traffic - but slow to recover from severe thinning.

MAINTENANCE

Water Needs: Low to medium - apply at least 1 inch of water as a deep soaking every, 4 to 7 days to encourage a deep, healthy root system during dry or hot periods. Avoid frequent, shallow watering that results in shallow roots, permitting weed germination and growth.

Mowing & Thatching: Optimum mowing height 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches for a high quality lawn, slow growth rate reduces mowing frequency. Mow regularly with a sharp rotary or reel mower, allowing clippings from frequent mowing to remain on the lawn. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shoot growth at one mowing. Periodic vertical cutting may be needed to control thatch accumulation if high nitrogen level is applied.

Soil & Fertilization Needs: Tolerates high salinity and infertile soil relatively well. Fertilize twice a year, spring and fall, with a complete fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphate and potassium. May also apply 1 or 2 summer fertilizer applications in climates with a long growing season. Apply N at 2 to 5 lbs per 1,000 sq. ft. per year. Water thoroughly after fertilization.

Disease, Weed & Insect Control: Some varieties have good resistance to diseases such as rust and leafspot, and to billbugs. The dense turf produced by zoysiagrass prevents most weeds from appearing.

All information is based on average/normal conditions; individual sites and situations may differ. Therefore, contact your local nurseryman or county Extension Office if more detailed information is needed on specific maintenance questions.  Where to Buy Turfgrass Sod