Turfgrass Cultivars: Which Is Best for Your Area?

By Roche, Jerry | Landscape & Irrigation, February 2004 | Go to article overview

Turfgrass Cultivars: Which Is Best for Your Area?


Roche, Jerry, Landscape & Irrigation


If you plant grass or sod on a regular basis as part of your service mix, you probably have your favorite, whether it's a brand-name cultivar that produces a monostand; a blend of cultivars from the same species; or a mix of cultivars from different species.

The major cultivars all undergo intensive testing at private and university-sponsored research sites throughout the country. But--considering the preponderance of new, improved grasses on the market today--it might not be a bad idea to set aside some little test plots of your own if necessary.

"I would recommend, first off, to seek out your particular state test trial that the state land-grant university usually puts out," says Dr. Doug Brede, research director for Jacklin Seed, Post Falls, Ida. "If you have a site that departs from the state test, in distance or in soils or something like that, then it would be a good idea to put out test plots. Not one little 3x3-foot square because you can't tell much from that, but a larger area. Plant a variety you have a question about, see how it performs and make some judgments based on your own individual locations."

Tuffgrasses are commonly selected for their geographical adaptability and lumped into the general categories "cool-season" and "warm-season." Here are characteristics of the most popular.

Cool-season (Northern) grasses

Kentucky bluegrass: by far, the favorite lawngrass; heals areas of thin grass; crowds out weeds; germinates slowly; established by seed or sod.

Perennial ryegrass: versatile; heat tolerant when not stimulated with too much fertilizer; better wear tolerance than Kentucky blue grass; germinates quickly; found in seed mixtures, blends and in quality sod.

Turf-type tall fescue: a dense turf with good resistance to disease and insect injury; tolerant of high summer temperatures; good drought and shade tolerance; often sold as blends of two or more named varieties.

Fine rescues (red, chewings, hard): generally used in mixtures with Kentucky bluegrass and/or perennial ryegrass; germinate quickly and establish in either sun or shade; the most shade tolerant of all lawngrasses; low fertilizer requirements; do not compete with slower-growing grasses in mixtures; hardy and low maintenance.

Warm-season (Southern) grasses

Bermudagrass: very aggressive grass that demands full sun and has very little tolerance or shade; one type established by seed, the other type planted from sprigs or sod; no significant disease or insect problems when properly mowed, fertilized and watered; low water and fertilization needs; dormant when temperature drops to less than 60 degrees F.

St. Augustinegrass: greatest shade tolerance of the warm-season grasses, but also thrives in full sun; easily established by sodding or plugging with proper fertilization and watering; quite sensitive to freezing temperatures and winter kill; wide variance in cold tolerance among varieties; choose only varieties resistant to St. Augustine Decline (SAD).

Centipedegrass: medium texture; forms a good, low growing, dense turf that remains green throughout the year; not as shade tolerant as St. Augustine, but more so than bermuda; excellent drought tolerance; low wear tolerance; slow growth rate; established by seed or vegetatively by sod or sprigs; leaves can be killed during hard freezes.

Zoysiagrass: excellent wear tolerance; good drought tolerance; not as shade tolerant as St. Augustine, but considerably more so than bermuda; most winter-hardy of the warm-season grasses; most often planted as sod or plugs; can take as much as two growing seasons to completely establish.

Tuff-type tall fescue: used in place of St. Augustine in upper South; good heat and drought tolerance; stays green all winter; generally better performance from blends than monostands. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Turfgrass Cultivars: Which Is Best for Your Area?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.