Yes, there are different types of grass out there you can have for your lawn. But not every one of them is suitable for every lawn.
The season and region play a great role to determine which kind of lawn grass will be perfect to have a healthy and lush lawn.
And, I think you should have a general idea of all those grasses. For new lawn enthusiasts, it is a must before you start working on your lawn.
Different Grass Types For Lawn
Here are the most popular grass types:
- Kentucky Bluegrass
- St. Augustine
- …and many more!
Apart from the above, I will talk about other grasses too. As most of the grasses can be broadly classified based on season, I will talk about the seasonal classification later in this article.
But first, let’s talk about common types as listed above first:
- Bermuda Grass
If you ask me what’s the most popular grass type in the U.S., I would say Bermuda grass. Yes, it requires a lot of maintenance but the majority of the residential lawns across the U.S. have this grass.
Unlike Bentgrass, this is warm-season grass and another favorite choice for the golf course. And plenty of homeowners prefer Bermuda grass for their lawns as well.
If you live in California, I know what I am talking about, right?
The reasons behind its huge popularity are the dense texture and deep green color of the grass. Besides, you can mow it to a very low height which is ideal for homes with pets and kids.
As it can withstand being cut very low, it’s highly popular in many golf courses and you can see it in the southern region of the U.S.
Now, if you live in the central states like the southern part of the Midwest, you can still have this grass. It can tolerate both high temperatures and colder temperatures.
You can spread and seed it above the ground and below the ground as well. Also, due to its deep root system, it is very dense and extremely durable.
Just keep in mind that, Bermuda grass also requires high maintenance like frequent watering, fertilization every year, watering, regular mowing, and so on.
If you are interested in this grass, you can also read the difference between Bermuda grass and St. Augustine.
- Kentucky Bluegrass
The greenish and sometimes bluish color is very eye-catching and if you touch the Kentucky bluegrass, it will feel its dry and coarse texture.
It grows well anywhere with moderate temperatures. So, you see them a lot in the northern region of the U.S.
The reason it is very thick and durable in nature is because of its deep root system.
The deep root system allows it to withstand severe damage. That’s why you see them a lot surrounding the walkways, around the driveway, and steps where these grasses are prone to wear and tear.
However, such grasses need water and sunshine to grow successfully. And they don’t grow well in extremely drought-prone areas.
So, naturally, Kentucky bluegrasses are very popular in the northern part of the U.S.
Bentgrass is familiar with many other names like Spreading Bent, Creeping Bent, Redtop Bent, Seaside Bentgrass, and so on.
It’s a cool-season grass ideal for the golf course because of its soft texture and low growth features. Even though its saturated color looks good, it’s not ideal for residential homes.
Let me explain why…
Bentgrass requires high maintenance like daily watering, lots of mowing, fertilization, using fungicides, and so on.
But as it can tolerate low mowing and survive well in wet and cold climates, this is definitely worth having on the yard for a beautiful green color.
You can see Bentgrass a lot in the northeastern U.S. because it can easily adapt to cool and humid climate conditions.
Yes, it’s a high-maintenance grass but you will be spending far less on fertilization and pesticides than other lawn grass types.
It needs a huge amount of sunlight to grow well. That’s why Zoysia grass is widely available in the central U.S. along with other regions like North and South Carolina.
Also, there are various types of Zosia like Emerald Zosia and Zeon Zoysia. Picking the suitable one is important.
It takes a full year for them to develop fully from the seeds. When fully grown, it has stiff leave blades and they are very prickly.
Don’t let the word ‘prickly’ discourage you from having this grass. Because of this feature, it can withstand drought, heat, heavy foot traffic. It does not require daily watering too for that reason.
The texture of the grass has made it completely different than other home grasses and if you have patience, the result with worth the wait.
You may already know that Zosia grass has a very low growth rate which is true, but once fully grown, it becomes very dense, thick, and robust. Your dense lawn will feel really good barefoot.
Many people even call it the carpet-type variety of lawn grass!
There is some problem growing Zosia on your lawn as well. As it produces a huge amount of seeds when now mowed regularly, it can be a problem.
Those excessive seeds will make your lawn grass very thick and it is out of control pretty soon. So, to keep your lawn with Zoysia grass healthy and beautiful, regular maintenance is a must!
Also, since Zoysia is actually a warm-season grass, it turns brown very quickly during the cold season. So, consider the environment as well!
Now, watch this video to learn how to grow thick Zosia from Dr. Rodney St. John!
Also known as Muhly grass which is basically one type of ornamental grass because of its beautiful color.
Muhly grass is highly popular among lawn owners who want to add more color variation to their lawns with a great mixture of pink and purple.
Does it require high maintenance?
No! It requires a little maintenance and it can be grown in a wide variety of soils.
However, you need to ensure an ample amount of sunlight. So, choose the locations wisely!
To ensure that each plant gets enough sunlight, you need to keep enough space between them. This space will also ensure that Muhlenbergia grass can grow to its full capacity.
Not so popular across the U.S. but if you live in an area with harsh weather conditions like drought, flood, or hurricane, Silvergrass can be an excellent choice for your lawn.
This ornamental grass type can handle different types of weather conditions and it requires fewer maintenance works than most other grasses.
It does not even require a lot of water to grow fully and you will find it extremely easy to manage Silvergrass. More so, it can prevent insects and pests from invading your lawn.
As a bonus, the flower of Silvergrass will bloom in the late summer and early autumn to add extra beauty to your lawn.
With fine and thin blades, Fescue is very common in the northern region of the U.S. The texture of Fescue is very similar to hair.
Fescue grass has multiple types of its own like hard fescue, chewing fescue, sheep fescue, and red fescue. But for the northern part of the U.S., tall and fine fescue grasses are common.
Tall fescue grass can tolerate high temperatures but it’s classified as a cool-season grass too. Some people even call it the weed grass type!
The reason it is sometimes classified as a weed type of grass is that it can stick out in uneven patches. Some portion of fescue can grow taller than other portions of the same grass!
When it comes to sprouting lawns, it’s not recommended to mix the tall fescue with other seeds to avoid the uneven look of the lawn as well.
Another fescue grass type is fine fescue. It is hugely popular among areas where there are large shaded areas.
They grow well under the shades of large trees, tall structures, or any such areas where direct sunlight is not available. And if your lawn does not get enough sunlight, this is the type of grass you want.
However, unlike tall fescue, fine fescue can’t tolerate warm or hot weather. So, keep that in your mind.
If Fescue grass seems promising to you, make sure to read the difference between Fescue grass and Bermuda grass.
- Fountain Grass
When you need more height for your lawn and garden, you need the Fountain Grass. Growing Fountain Grass in bunches with each other is very popular in drought-prone areas of the U.S.
Yes, you heard it right. Fountain grass can withstand harsh conditions like drought and other variety of severe weather conditions.
There various types of Fountain grass-like Redhead and Hameln and all of them grow well in various types of soil.
Among the two, the redhead fountain grass is pest and disease-resistant. It requires low maintenance as well. But it can dazzle your neighbors with its bottlebrush plumes when fully bloom.
The shiny texture and visible veins on their blades have made Ryegrass very popular among lawn enthusiasts.
There are various types of Ryegrass but the most common type is Perennial Ryegrass in the U.S.
If you need to mix different types of grasses in your, this type of Perennial Ryegrass is most recommended.
Because it grows FAST and the aesthetic appearance is simply awesome!
However, if you do love them too, be careful while mowing them. Because you need sharp blades of the mower to keep the health of Ryegrass good.
When you mow Ryegrass with your mower with sharp blades, you will see a white color on top of the blades of such grasses.
If your mower has dull blades, mowing Ryegrass with such a mower will make them shred.
Whereas most of the grass types have blades, Dichondra has round leaves instead. That’s why it’s so easy to identify! In Arizona and California, you can see them a lot.
In the warmer region of the U.S., a lot of homeowners prefer Dichondra simply because of the dense ground cover it can provide.
By providing you a soft greenery carpet-like look, Dichondra can offer you a great landscaping look for your entire house!
However, I would be careful because Dichondra grass is very prone to insects and diseases. It also requires regular watering and fertilization.
- Centipede Grass
With short blades, it grows horizontally. Because of these characteristics, Centipede grass can keep your pets away from your lawn.
If you live in a warm and humid region, you can grow Centipede grass on your lawn too.
Also, if your lawn soil has a higher level of nitrogen, it will grow better where other grass types won’t grow well. Yes, it prefers the sunlight but Centipede grass can survive under the shade too.
But it won’t grow where the climate is dry and hot as it requires lots of moisture to grow healthy.
That’s why Centipede grass grows well in the Southern side of the U.S.
Yes, it needs a lot of moisture to stay healthy but it requires low maintenance from your end. It does not require fertilization at all!
However, it needs watering when the drought situation arrives as they grow relatively shallow roots. And keep in mind that, it can’t survive the heavy foot traffic as well.
It has a very close resemblance to turfgrass because it can spread and multiply in the soil above the ground. The thick texture and the light green color look great on any lawn.
According to many homeowners, Centipede grass forms the right backdrop for any garden with its thick carpet of light green blades.
Bahiagrass can retain color during the growing season and you will love the light to medium green color. The texture is very coarse and such grass has pointed tips.
When overgrown, you can quickly recognize Bahiagrass when fully grown. The flat and folded blades usually taper to a point and that feature has made them easily recognizable.
I am not saying it’s a very attractive-looking grass, but if your soil has a very low pH level, you can consider growing Bahiagrass there.
Besides, this warm-season perennial grass is suitable for any soil type you may have.
With its deep root system, it is a drought-resistant grass that many people prefer to plant on their lawns to fight the adverse environment like extreme heat.
Being a dense turfgrass, this slow-growing grass can withstand a lot of foot traffic
Also, you will need only a limited number of irrigation and fertilization with minimum maintenance requirements.
To have a better-looking green lush lawn, you can plant Bahia grass with cool-season ryegrass too.
You can see Bahiagrass a lot on the coast of the Gulf states and in the Southeast because of the ideal growing conditions there.
- St. Augustine Grass
Being warm-season grass, St. Augustine grass is as popular as Bermuda grass. The leaves are broad and coarse that look almost like centipede grass.
If you are living in a hot region, you have seen this grass a lot. With rounded blade tips and broadleaf, it’s easy to identify it.
There are plenty of reasons why St. Augustine grass is so popular among lawn owners. First, it’s a fast-growing grass that can offer a lush green lawn in the shortest possible time.
Just because of its lush appearance, it is highly popular in hot coastal regions like Florida and so on. As the sod can grow in various soil types, it is a highly grown grass for any tropical area.
Yes, it’s true it requires a little more maintenance like fertilization, watering, mowing, etc. than the Bahia grass, the beauty of your lawn will simply supersede such extra hassle.
Also, it’s more durable than Bahia grass! But make sure to provide the ideal condition for it to have fast-growing St. Augustine grass on your lawn.
- Roughstalk Bluegrass
It’s wet-climate grass and can’t tolerate direct sunlight. So, if your lawn has a shady condition, Rough Stalk Bluegrass can be a good choice.
I have seen plenty of eye-catching lawns with a mixture of perennial ryegrass and rough stalk bluegrass
But keep in mind, any direct access to sunlight will lead to dead patches here and there on your lawn. During the summer, make sure to keep the soil wet.
Buffalograss is one of the hardiest types of warm-season grass that can tolerate drought, humidity, cold, and heat. You can identify it by its short blades.
It’s native to the arid prairie regions of the U.S. because Buffalograss needs lower water to survive. There is less rainfall in the west of the Mississippi River each year, it can grow there as well.
And it won’t survive and grow in wet states. The rainfall will cause the seeds to sprout fast.
It can’t tolerate constant shades but it can tolerate cold states. But it’s a popular type of sod in warmer areas.
During the cold season, they go to the dormant state. The warmer season wakes them up and you can notice their grayish-green grass with fine texture.
Yes, people grow it as forage for the livestock but the improved varieties of Buffalo grass can be a good turf grass too.
The good news is that it takes a little maintenance and the fertilization requirement is very minimum. However, they don’t do well in heavy foot traffic areas.
So, if your lawn is located in a low rainfall area with access to plenty of the Sun, Buffalo grass is something you can consider having.
It’s actually one kind of St. Augustine grass with dark green color and coarse texture. It’s warm-season grass and people in the South really love it.
So, if you live in such conditions as Florida or Louisiana, you can consider having it on your lawn. The wide coarse-textured blades look good on any lawn.
They require a medium level of maintenance work! But it needs a lot of water and warm air to thrive fully.
- Wheat Grass
If your area is plagued with severe drought and your lawn is heavy foot traffic from your kids and pets, you can consider having Wheatgrass on your lawn as well.
Apart from that, you won’t be needing much fertilization as well. Being cold-seasoned grass, it’s worth having on your lawn if cold winter is a common phenomenon there.
It’s not allowed in some of the states. Even some countries in the world prohibited Kikuyugrass as many people consider it a noxious weed.
I don’t either recommend this because of its extremely invasive nature. It is probably the fastest spreading grasses that can replace all the grasses within a very short period of time.
- Brome, Timothy, and Orchard Grass
Occasionally, you may find them in home lawns but they are basically field grass and often used in roadside seed mixtures.
I don’t recommend these grasses as well because they don’t usually offer quality turf.
How To Pick The Right Lawn Grass Type?
Various lawn grasses require different lawn care, soil condition, climate condition, and so on. Having the wrong grass on the lawn will result in disappointment only.
So, if you need to have the best-looking lawn in your neighborhood, you need to get the right grass. Here are some factors to consider to pick your best grass:
- Consider Season
First, determine whether you need cool-season or warm-season grass. But if you live in a transition zone, you will be better off with Zoysia or Kentucky bluegrass.
- Access To Sunlight
If you are aware that some lawn grass needs plenty of sunshine to grow and thrive and some other types don’t need direct access to that.
So, if your lawn is located in a shaded area or if there are tall trees around the lawn, make sure the grass you pick can grow well in those shaded areas without access to the Sun.
- Foot Traffic Situation
Do you have pets and kids who love to play on the lawn a lot? If so, you might want to pay attention here.
Lawns with heavy foot traffic need durable and hardy grass types to withstand the abuse.
Having a lawn requires plenty of maintenance works. From irrigation to fertilization to applying pesticides, a lot of works have to be done in a timely fashion.
Without much effort the time spent, it’s hard to get a lush and pristine lawn. Your lawn grass may even dry and die without regular care.
But luckily, as you have seen above, some lawn grass can still survive and thrive well without much maintenance work from your side.
So, ask yourself whether you can ensure such care and investment and decide which grass will be the right pick for you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1) Northern: Kentucky Bluegrass. 2) Northern/Transition: Tall Fescue. 3) Transition: Zoysia/Bermuda Grass. 4) Southern: St. Augustine Grass.
For northern regions (cool-season), fescue or bluegrass; for southern regions (warm-season), St. Augustine or Zoysia is the best kind of grass.
Perennial Ryegrass, Hard Fescue, Kentucky Bluegrass, and Zoysia grass are the darkest green.
Bermuda & Zoysia are the toughest grasses.
Fescue, Bermuda, Zoysia, Buffalo, Bahia, etc. are the most low maintenance grasses.
Fescue grass stays green all year long.
All those different types of grass names can confuse considering you have so many options. But whatever lawn grass you pick, make sure it is compatible with the environment you live in.
Also, pay attention to the maintenance requirements as well. If you are a busy person, avoid the grass that requires high maintenance.