Types of Grasses

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  • Topic: Poaceae, Lawn, Festuca
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  • Published : February 4, 2013
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Types of grasses.
* Cool season grasses all thrive in northern areas, including Canada, as well as higher elevations farther south. The main growing period for cool-season grass is in spring and fall when soil temperature is 50 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit, and the air temperature is 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Come high summer, cool-season grasses go dormant unless regularly irrigated. Kentucky bluegrass, Bentgrass, Ryegrass, and the fescues are all cool-season grasses. * Warm season grasses grow best in southern regions. The main growing period for warm-season grass is in the summer when soil temperature is between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit, and the air temperature is 80 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Warm-season grasses become dormant with the onset of cooler weather. The degree of tolerance of warm-season grasses varies by cultivar, but many turn straw-colored or light brown after the first frost. The Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Zoysia grasses are just a few species found in this group. * Transitional season grasses can adapt to the climate in the band across the country where north meets south. This zone extends from southern California, east through Oklahoma and Kansas, to the eastern coastal states of Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia. Tall fescues and zoysia grass are the two grasses most frequently used in the transitional zone.

Specific Grasses
Cool season.
* Creeping Bentgrass
Creeping bentgrass (agrostis palustris) was originally cultivated for use on golf course greens. It's main advantage, especially for greens, is that it tolerates extremely close mowing. In fact, if creeping bentgrass is not mown close and allowed to grow to a normal height found on most homes, it takes on an shaggy appearance. Creeping bentgrass does not tolerate hot, dry weather, nor cold winters. Not designed for normal home use, unless your home is on a golf course green and you plan on mowing your lawn every other day at 1.

* Kentucky Bluegrass
Kentucky bluegrass is the most common cool season grass and probably the best known. Kentucky bluegrass creates a high quality lawn. It has been around for many years and is now available in many different blend formulations. Kentucky bluegrass has a moderate growth pattern and does spread and will fill in bare spots. The grass will go dormant in hot, dry weather as well as during the cold winter months common in North America. It does poorly in extremely shady areas. Not recommended for extremely hot climates and will require supplemental irrigation during hot, dry periods. Bluegrass seed-blends that include perennial ryegrass, produce a tougher wearing lawn. With the addition of creeping red fescue, the lawn will be more tolerate shadier areas. But what actually happens is that for those situations, the Kentucky bluegrass just doesn't fill in as it would normally in a full sun location and the supplemental blends actually fills in. Kentucky bluegrass develops a shallow root system that is not drought tolerant and will go dormant during extreme conditions. If given intermittent watering during prolonged drought conditions, it will come back. * Shade tolerance: poor

* Planting: seed or sod
* Mowing height: 1 1/2" - 2 1/2"
* Water: needs regular watering, will survive droughts by going into a dormant state. * Fertilization: needs regular fertilization
* Maintenance: low
* Introduced by: colonists that brought it from Europe.
Kentucky bluegrass grows 18" - 24" tall if left uncut and is readily identified by its boat-shaped leaf tip. It spreads by rhizomes and tillers and forms a dense sod. New shoots (rhizomes and tillers) are produced primarily in the spring and late summer. Most shoots produced in the spring remain vegetative. Shoots produced in late summer often terminate in an infloresence the following spring.

Rough Bluegrass
Rough bluegrass is capable of forming a reasonable turf under certain limited environmental...
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