grass options for dfw area

ladybugfruitMarch 17, 2011

We just moved into our house 6 months ago and the front lawn is in desperate need of some help. Thinking I need to seed some kind of grass ( if I want any grass this season) pretty soon and would love to have some of your expert advice (I hear there are some great Texas lawn guru's over here!)

We have sandy loam. The area I am needing to "help along" gets mostly sun and some dappled shade. I don't want bermuda...I HATE fighting it in my flower beds and I am also putting quite a few of those in this season. St. Augustine would be ok, but I was hoping there were some other low cost options (well, seed). I have seen signs of some voles, but am working on getting that under control. I have prepped the yard in that I've already put down some compost and cottonseed mill to get the soil waking up and alive. I would love to hear what you would suggest!



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Low cost seed options do not exist when it comes to warn season grasses and you eliminate Bermuda seed.

As for Saint Augustine there is no such thing as seed. It is a sod only.

The only other grass that will perform well is Zoysia, but you do not want any of two the seeded varieties.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 11:09PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

All of the warm season grasses are creeping sod formers. That means they will try to go over or under any barrier you put up to separate the lawn from the flower beds. Six inches deep would be a good barrier for bermuda but I'm not sure it would keep zoysia out. St Aug climbs over so you can trim it out with a string trimmer.

If you don't decide very soon, you will soon have a bermuda lawn. St Aug can be kept so that the bermuda is inconsequential (except for the fact that it might find the border in your beds and creep over). Let us know which you end up with and we can help you make it look great. If you are willing to mow twice a week and fertilize every month, then you can have bermuda in the sunny areas. St Augustine is the popular alternative but you have to be willing to water once a week in the summer heat.

Where do you live?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 10:52PM
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OP lives in DFW (Dallas/Ft. Worth), guessing from the title.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 11:06PM
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Let's try this again. You are in DFW correct?

If in DFW you have 3 choices of grass to choose from:

Bermuda by far is the most popular variety for a number of reasons. It is the least expensive and used in just about all new construction. There are some good common types (from seed) available, but it is still too early for Bermuda seed to germinate. The best varieties are from sod, plugs, and sprig only as the hybrid varieties are sterile. Every sod farm in the area carries many varieties to choose from and sod can be laid anytime.

Saint Augustine is the second most popular variety in DFW. Saint Augustine is only available as sod and plugs, there is no seed. You mostly see SA in neighborhoods with mature trees as SA is the best for shady areas. The biggest drawback for SA in DFW is it can be frozen out and killed in winter as it was winter before last where approx. 75% of the SA lawns were frozen out and had to be replaced. Area sod farms were hit hard and could not supply the demand and it had to be trucked in from Houston sod farms.

Last is Zoysia. All area sod farms carry a few varieties. Zoysia is somewhat like Bermuda, just grows slower and not as fine bladed or as deep dark green as a general rule. There a couple of varieties that can be seeded, but trust me you do not want them. So this leaves you with a sod or plug option only, and Zoysia sod is expensive.

So if you insist on a seeded lawn, you only have one real choice in DFW, one of the improved common (from seed) Bermuda varieties and the good varieties are not cheap and need TLC to get to germinate and fill in.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 4:17PM
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It's not available in seed form and it isn't cheap initially, but I put in a turfallo (tech turf)lawn with plugs last year and I absolutely love it so far. It spreads fast, requires very little water or mowing but isn't invasive like Bermuda. This year I am expanding my lawn by cutting my own plugs from last years growth. Awesome stuff! Its very pretty and soft and ripples in the breeze like water.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 10:21AM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

granburyflowergirl, please start a new thread on your experience with Tech Turf. Why did you choose it? Were there any issues installing? What are your sunlight conditions? Stuff like that. Pictures would be excellent! Also if you don't mind, would you visit my GW page, find my email, and send me a message. I'd like to visit with you off line.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 11:53AM
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Turfallo? I can see it working in an area outside the city with poor soil conditions, but in an urban environment where your lawn is flanked by Bermuda, Saint Augustine, and or Zoysia Buffalo grass does not stand much of a chance competing.

I would love to see some pictures and here your experiences.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 1:44PM
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Here is a link to last year's thread where I documented the whole turfallo plug planting experience, it is picture intensive so takes a while to load. I actually have princess 77 bermuda and regular bermuda in my yard too, so time will tell how well they compete, so far turfallo is holding its own and then some, it bounced back from winter quicker than the bermuda and appears to be shading it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Turfallo thread

    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 2:41PM
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