The United States is blanketed in about 128,000 square kilometers of grassy lawns, according to NASA. Americans certainly love their lawns. Homeowners can choose from a seemingly infinite amount of grass plants and there exists extensive varieties beyond that. If you aren’t happy with your lawn, consider a change of turf, with grass that is relatively low-maintenance, resistant to drought and will add curb appeal to any lawn.
During the sweltering summer months, zoysiagrass produces a dense, cushy turf. This warm-weather grass thrives in heat, but it’s not suitable for shady areas, according to URI.edu. Less thirsty than its cool season counterparts, a lawn of zoysiagrass requires much less water. The thickness of zoysiagrass fends off weeds and crabgrass, but because of it’s husky, solid blades, zoysiagrass needs frequent mowing. TreeHugger.com suggests Palisades, El Toro, Jamur and Empire as the best drought-resistant varieties. This grass type needs powerful lawn mowers with sharpened blades.
This perennial short grass grows mostly in North American prairies and can withstand lengthy droughts and is resistant to extreme environmental conditions. The grass changes from a gray-green to tan in the winter and a shade of lavender in autumn. The thin roots of buffalo grass burrow up to five feet beneath the ground, creating dense sod, according to BluePlanetBiomes.org. Buffalo grass is an ideal variety for an attractive lawn. A regular gasoline-powered push mower should suffice for this type of grass, according to Missouri.edu.
St. Augustine Grass
St. Augustine grass is a warm-season turfgrass that prefers sunlight but can tolerate shade. Its broad blades are wide and form a boat-shaped tip. The grass will color your lawn a medium-green hue. St. Augustine grass isn’t wear tolerant and doesn’t fare well in high traffic sports turf, but the plant suits general purpose turf and lawns, according to UCDavis.com. Summer galvanizes St. Augustine grass growth, but the plant slows and becomes dormant during winter. Walterreeves.com, the self-proclaimed “Georgia Gardener,” suggests using a rotary mower if your St. Augustine grass is relatively smooth and you keep the blade sharp. If not, use a reel mower.
Bermuda or Bahama grass began in African savannas, and because of the land’s mercurial environment, the grass is resistant to most of what nature throws its way. Grazing animals, poor soil, floods and fires can’t suppress Bermuda grass growth. The plant is a creeping grass with dense formation and deep roots. The gray-green and rough grass blades usually grow one to four inches, according to BluePlanetBiomes.org, and prefers warm climates with more than 16 inches of annual rainfall. Lawncare.org states that preventing this type of grass from becoming scalped is accomplished effectively when using a reel mower. A traditional mower will work, but the level of cutting will likely need to be raised.
Bahiagrass is a low-maintenance grass that was originally used on pastures in the southeastern U.S. The grass’s roots extend deep into the ground. Compared to other grass types, bahiagrass manages in infertile or sandy soils and does not need frequent fertilization or watering. The plant is relatively resistant to most diseases and insect infestation. Bahiagrass doesn’t thrive in areas with high pH, shade, traffic or saltwater, according UFL.edu. The Argentine variety of Bahiagrass suits lawns well with its dark green hue and dense sod. The Pensacola variety is the most widely grown type and grows well in either hot or cold climates. Scotts.com, the Miracle-Gro company site, suggests you use a heavy-duty mower and keep your blade sharp.