7 Types of Grass in Florida Homeowners Should Consider
You know that great feeling when you get a fresh cut from the barber? That's the same feeling as when your grass is at the top of its game. It's a little tall or short and has enough bounce to run around without breaking off in chunks.
Wouldn't it be nice if your lawn could always be like that? Well, with the right grass varieties, it can! We will give you an inside look at seven types of grass in Florida and what makes each type special; then, we'll show you how to choose the best one for your yard.
Bahia is warm-season grass known for its low maintenance and tolerance to grass stressors such as drought or heat. Bahia is most known for naturally growing in pastures; however, it has been increasing in popularity for homeowners looking for low-cost, low-maintenance grass.
Although, if the grass is young and not quite established, it is susceptive to weeds. Bahia grows where many other commercial types of grass do not due to its ability to thrive without a professional sprinkler system. This grass has an upright growth habit with medium green leaves with a wide blade width (1/2 inch). Bahia grass also has distinctive leaf margins, which are finely serrated or scalloped along the edges. This unique blade gives the grass its name "Bahia," meaning "bay," due to its similarity to bay trees. Bahia originated from coastal areas in South America several hundred years ago before being introduced into North America sometime around 1750. The early Spanish settlers first discovered this species growing along Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and later moved Bahia with them to Argentina.
Bermuda grass is a warm-season grass that grows in USDA hardiness zones 7 to 11. It's known for its heat and drought tolerance, making it a popular choice for southern states. Bermuda grass has distinct fine blades that make it a soft surface to walk or play on.
Bermudagrass is one of the most widely used grass varieties in the world because of its ability to tolerate poor soil conditions. Bermuda grass is an aggressive grower and tolerant against stressors such as drought, traffic, and cold temperatures.
Bermuda grass is found in residential areas but also on golf courses, parks, and athletic fields. It is an excellent choice because of its high wear tolerance and ability to withstand heavy traffic.
Centipedes is a hardy grass that can withstand drought, heat, and cold. It has very low maintenance requirements and requires little mowing. The only downside to Centipede is its height; it grows at about 4 inches per year on average, making it one of the slowest growing grasses. It is best grown in the southeast United States due to the particular nature of Centipede on the type of soil or sand it is grown in. It does not tolerate foot traffic as well as other grasses but ranks high on shade tolerance.
St. Augustine Floratam
St. Augustine is a warm-season grass that is drought-tolerant and recovers quickly due to its fast growing nature. St. Augustine is dark green in color with prominent broad blades. St. Augustine creates a lush appearance. St. Augustine grass is Florida's most common variety of grass. This type of lawn is popular in Florida because it can withstand hot weather and high humidity better than other grass varieties, such as Bermuda or Zoysia grasses, which do not do well under these conditions. St. Augustine grass can also be found throughout the southeast United States, stretching up to the Carolinas and across to Texas. If your grass is exposed to sunlight for 6+ hours, St. Augustine may be the best option for you.
St. Augustine CitraBlue
Developed by the University of Florida, St. Augustine CitraBlue is a warm-season grass known for its bold blue-green color. Like other St Augustine varieties CitraBlue has a lush appearance and has broad, flat blades. CitraBlue grows much denser than its counterparts, creating a softer carpet-like feel. CitraBlue thrives in warm, sunny weather and prefers sandy, clay based soils. This grass is very drought tolerant and is very weed resistant due to the solid canopy created by the dense structure. CitraBlue was also bred for disease resistance and is highly resistant to common diseases in Florida like take all root-rot, large patch and gray leaf spot. If you're looking for great color, disease resistance and a soft feel this grass may be for you.
St. Augustine Palmetto
St. Augustine Palmetto is a warm-season grass that is drought-tolerant and does well in shade. One of the most cold tolerant St. Augustine grasses it also recovers well from injury. Palmetto is emerald green in color with soft, broad blades. A very versatile grass, Palmetto is an ideal choice for residential and commercial use. If you struggle with LVN in your area, Palmetto is also resistant to the effects of the Sugarcane Mosaic Virus. If your looking for a versatile St Augustine grass, Palmetto is the grass for you.
If you're looking for grass that's low maintenance, drought-tolerant, and grows well in Florida's climate, Zoysia is an excellent choice. Zoysia is famous for being a "barefoot grass" because of how soft it is to walk or lay on during a nice day. Zoysia is a warm-season grass native to Asia. It has been used as an ornamental plant since the 17th century and was introduced into the United States in the early 1900s.
Zoysia grows best in southern states like Florida, where temperatures do not drop below freezing during winter months. The plant can tolerate high heat and humidity but requires frequent watering during dry periods. Otherwise, it may develop brown patches on its leaves or die back entirely if left unattended for too long without water.
Looking for the best grass for your backyard? We've got the inside scoop.
If you're looking for the best grass for your backyard, consider these seven types:
- Bermuda. If you want the same stunning grass as professional golf courses, Bermuda grass is for you. Bermuda has an aggressive growth habit and will grow in times of drought, shade, or cold temperatures. However, it really shines when it is given moderate to high maintenance, such as aerating, watering, mowing, and fertilizing.
- Centipede - This type of grass grows quickly and requires little maintenance, making it ideal for those who want to spend their time doing other things than mowing the lawn every week or two! Planting Centipede will give any yard a clean look without much effort from its owner. However, it does require more water than some other species do during dry spells due to its shallow root system.
- St. Augustine Floratam - This grass is one of the most resilient grass varieties grown in Florida because of its quick recovery. This tried and true variety can be found in most lawns across Florida. St. Augustine Floratam is a great variety for Florida lawns!
- St. Augustine CitraBlue - This grass offers arguably the most beautiful color in the St Augustine family. The dense nature of the grass and the disease resistant traits make it a great option for the Florida consumer. If you're looking for new innovations in St Augustine, this grass is for you.
- St. Augustine Palmetto - Palmetto is a very popular, drought tolerant and disease resistant grass. Palmetto is the most cold tolerant St Augustine, making it a great grass for more Northern areas of Florida. If you are challenged with disease in your lawn or live in a colder climate in Florida, this grass is for you.
- Zoysia brings comfort to your lawn. It is salt tolerant and does well in high temperatures. It is not as strong as Bermuda in traffic tolerance; however, Zoysia's hardiness does recover in time. Zoysia's low maintenance and plush feel make it a good choice for homeowners.
If you're looking to add life to your lawn, consider one of these seven types of grasses. Do you already have an established lawn but want to fill in patches? Check out the varieties of grass plugs we grow. We've covered all the bases with these options--from Centipede to St. Augustine and Bermuda --so there's something for everyone!