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Lawn & Landscape Management
Grass Varieties

When it comes to grass and lawns, variety is the "spice
of life." There's no one grass on the market suitable for
all locations and applications. Instead, there are more
than 100 varieties from which to choose. Using three or
more varieties will combine the best characteristics of
several grass types to produce a lush, healthy lawn.

Zoysia is one of the earliest grass species to be used as turf. It is native to Australia, China,
Japan, Korea, New Zealand and the Philippines. Zoysia is a slow growing, sod that forms a
dense uniform turf in full sun and light and open shade. Its leaves and stems develop from nodes
on stolons and rhizomes and grow upright at an angle of about 90 degrees. Because the leaves
are very stiff and stems are tough, zoysia has excellent wear resistance. Zoysia in general
exhibits excellent heat and salinity tolerance.

Palisades Zoysia

*Palisades Zoysia japonica is vegetatively produced, medium broad textured, high density turf
noted specifically suitable for home lawns, golf fairways and roughs, sports fields, industrial
parks and highway medians.

Palisades is noted for its tolerance to shade, salt, heat, and cold. It also has low water, fertilizer,
and pesticide requirements. Palisades is resitant to chinch bugs, mole crickets and sod
webworm. It will tolerate mowing as close as one half inch with good weed competitions. Ideally
for home lawns, mowing heights can ranges as high as two to two and a half inches .

Palisades grows both from stolons and rhizomes providing rapid re-growth and repair
capabilities. Palisades has few seed heads, a low thatching tendency, and is less less invasive
requiring little or no edging.

Crowne Zoysia

*Crowne Zoysia japonica is vegetatively produced, medium broad to course textured, high
density turf noted specifically suitable for home lawns, sports fields, industrial parks and highway
medians, and low maintenance areas where competition against weed invasion is important.

Crowne is noted for its tolerance to shade, salt, heat, and cold. It also has low water, fertilizer,
and pesticiede requirements. Crowne is resitant to chinch bugs, mole crickets, zoysia grass mite,
and sod webworm. It will tolerate mowing as close as one half inch and as high as two to two and
a half inches .

Crowne grows both from stolons and rhizomes providing rapid re-growth and repair capabilities. It
has few seed heads and a low thatching tendency. When compared to St. Augustine, Crowne
has a higher shde tolerance and develops into a thicker, denser turf.

Cavalier Zoysia

*Cavalier Zoysia matrella is a vegetatively produced, fine textured, high density turf with long
slender leaves noted specifically for high quality uniformity of appearance and distinct summer
presentation. It is a suitable replacement for Emerald Zoysia as it has a less tendency to scalp.
Cavalier is suitable for sports fields, fairways, tee boxes, and home lawns.

Cavalier demonstrates tolerances to shade, salt tolerance, temperature extremes, and low soil
fertility. Cavailer is resistant to tropical sod webworm, fall armyworm, tawny mole cricket, hunting
billbug, and differential grasshopper.

Royal Zoysia  

*Royal Zoysia matrella is a vegetatively produced, fine textured, high density turf with long
slender leaves. Royal is suitable for sports fields, fairways, tee boxes, and home lawns.

Royal has moderate to low water requirements. It develops a dense canopy offering excellent
competition to weeds.

Emerald Zoysia

* Emerald Zoysia, a hybrid cultivar between Z. japonica and Z. matrella released in 1955, is
particularly popular in subtropical climates of North America. Emerald is a thin bladed, very slow
growing, dense turf, with has a soft fine texture that when left unmowed, forms a lumpy
convoluted surface which is sometimes used in oriental landscapes.

Emerald is drought tolerant due to its deep root structure, however browning can occur in triple
digit heat. Irrigation will generally restore its vibrant green color in a matter of minutes. The grass
exhibits a dense creeping growth, rather than an aggressive upward, growth. The blade density
is much higher than other grasses, giving a very dense, carpet-like look. Emerald can have a
tendency to thatch if not mowed at regular intervals.  

Centipede (Eremochloa ophiuroides)

*Centipede, a warm season grass popular along the east and southeast coastal regions of the
United States, is native to China. It was introduced to the U.S. around 1916. Centipede has a
good tolerance to low soil fertility, has a natural light green color, and grows best in acidic soils
whose pH is between 5.0 to 6.0. Centipede is a creeping grass that spreads horizontally by
stolens (above ground runners). It has leaves that are wider than bermudagrass but narrower
than St. Augustine and grows well in full sun and light shade.

Typically Centipede is a slow growing grass. It can be mowed with a rotary mower with sharp
blades at 1 to 1-1/2 inches. During periods of drought, or in shaded areas, the mowing height
should be raised about 1/2 inch. Mow often enough so only 1/3 of the plant height is removed.
High or infrequent mowing encourages thatch.

TifBlair Centipede

*TifBlair Centipede is the product of over 25 years of research and genetic engineering by the
turfgrass breeding program at Tifton, Georgia. TifBlair was developed to provide the landscape
industry a superior centipede with a patented pedigree.

TifBlair will grow in soil pH levels down to 4.2, giving it a much wider range of application than
Common Centipede. TifBlair is more shade tolerant and has improved cold tolerance. TifBlair's
root system is deeper and stronger, 2-3 times larger than Common Centipede and adapts well to
dry conditions. TifBlair produces more stolons with more leaves faster and late season color
retention is superior to Common Centipede. In tests conducted in Alabama, Oklahoma, and
Georgia, TifBlair consistently out-performed the other tested centipede varieties.

With a superior pedigree, TifBlair provides reliable performance and consistency every time.
TifBlair is grown and sold under a rigorous set of rules and guidelines designed to promote on-
going quality, purity, and uniformity. TifBlair is available only through a select group of qualified,
licensed producers.

St. Augustine (Stenotaphrum secundatum)

*St. Augustine grass, a coarse textured, stoloniferous, vegetatively propagated species that roots
at the nodes, is commonly referred to as ‘carpet grass’. It is a widely used lawn grass along the
coastal regions of the United States, found from the Carolinas to Florida and westward to
California. St. Augustine thrives in high temperature areas that have mild winters. St. Augustine
grass is native to the Gulf of Mexico region, the West Indies and Western Africa.

St. Augustine grass tolerates moderate shade, as good or better than other warm season
grasses. Under densely shaded conditions, St. Augustine grass develops thin, spindly turf. So
long as fertility and drainage are adequate, St. Augustine grass tolerates a wide range of soil
types. St. Augustine grass grows satisfactorily at a pH range from 5.0 to 8.5, but develops a
chlorotic appearance in highly alkaline soils (above pH 7.5). It does not tolerate compacted or
waterlogged soil conditions. St. Augustine grass is highly tolerant of soil salinity, producing
satisfactory growth at salt levels as high as 16 mmhos.

St. Augustine grass is used primarily for lawns as it does not tolerant traffic as well as some other
warm season species. It produces satisfactory turf at moderate levels of maintenance, effectively
competes with weeds and other grasses and has only a few serious pests.

In moist, warm climates St. Augustine grass maintains a satisfactory turf cover with only
occasional mowing. In drier climates (below 30 inches annual rainfall) it survives with
supplemental irrigation. At higher maintenance levels, St. Augustine grass produces a thick, lush,
dark green turf that is highly preferred by homeowners.

Raleigh St. Augustine

*Raleigh St. Augustine grass was released by the North Carolina Experiment Station in 1980 as
a cold tolerant, SAD resistant strain. Raleigh is finer textured than Floratam and develops a
dense turf much like the Texas Common strain of St. Augustine grass. Raleigh is also more
shade tolerant than Floratam. But, unlike Floratam, Raleigh is not resistant to lawn chinch bugs.

Texas Common St. Augustine  

*A strain of St. Augustine grass grown and produced commercially in Texas since 1920 is called
Texas Common. Texas Common is typical of the white stigma type reported to be native to the
Gulf-Caribbean-West African region. Texas Common was found to be a fertile diploid with 18
chromosomes. Seedling progeny from this white stigma type show wide variations in
morphological characters. However, since the strain has been propagated vegetatively for over
100 years, only a few variations in the grass have been produced. Natural variants of the
common strain are found throughout the state. It is assumed that these variants developed from
seed produced by the common strains of St. Augustine grass.  

Floratam St. Augustine

*Floratam St. Augustine grass was released by the Florida and Texas Agricultural Experiment
Stations in 1972 as a SAD virus and chinch bug resistant selection. Floratam has a purple stigma
color and is sterile. Stolons of Floratam are large, purplish-red in color with internodes averaging
3 inches in length. Leaf blades are wider and longer than common St. Augustine grass.

Floratam is not as cold tolerant as the common type found in Texas. Its use should be restricted
to the South Texas and Southern Florida coastal zones. Floratam also lacks the degree of shade
tolerance that other St. Augustine grass varieties possess.

Bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon)

*Bermudagrass is native to north Africa, Asia, Australia and southern Europe and is widely
cultivated in warm climates all over the world between about 30° south and 30° north latitude. It is
very aggressive, crowding out most other grasses and invading other habitats. The name
"Bermuda Grass" was derived from its abundance as an invasive species on Bermuda; it does
not occur naturally there.

Bermuda's blades are short and narrow with a greyish green color and rough edges. It produces
seed heads in clusters of 3 to 7 spikes. Its deep root system, which enables it to set roots to a
depth over 6 feet in penetrable soil, makes it a very drought resistant grass. Bermuda reproduces
by seeds, runners, and rhyzomes. Bermuda will root wherever a node of a runner touches the
ground, forming a dense mat.

Bermuda grows best in full sun and is retarded by full shade. For denser turf, Bermuda should be
kept mowed low, as it tends to become spindly if left at heights above 3-4 inches.

Common Bermuda

*Common Bermudagrass is used for lawns, athletic fields, erosion control, roadsides, commercial
landscapes, general purpose pastures, and many other uses. It is adapted for a wide range of
soil types from sandy to clay soils; best adapted to the lower 1/3 of the US on well drained sites.
Common is very drought tolerant but still can stand flooding for short periods.

419 Tifway Bermuda  

*419 Tifway is characterized as having a dark green color and leaves that are medium fine
textured. It is a hybrid bermudagrass released in 1959 and for many years has been the turfgrass
standard for fairways, sports fields, home lawns and other areas where fine-textured, dark green,
dense, weed-free, warm-season turf was desired. It is low growing and spreads rapidly. Its
density, fine texture and soft blades provide a soft cushion in which to walk and play.

Tifway grows best in full sun and has a light shade tolerance; grows best in hot climates and may
become dormant after frost but recovers quickly when temperatures warm; will tolerate sustained
periods of drought if well established and responds well to irrigation during dry conditions; has
good injury recovery and spreads rapidly by rhizomes in warm season; and grows best when soil
pH is between 6.5 and 7.2.

Celebration Bermuda

*Celebration has a striking blue-green color and soft texture. It tolerates drought and cold, and
has a higher degree of shade tolerance than other bermudagrasses. Celebration offers
specifiers, landscapers, golf course designers, sports-turf managers and homeowners
exceptional performance across a wide spectrum of applications. Celebration requires less
mowing and water than typical bermudagrass varieties. It has tight runners, rhizomes, and deep
roots that provide excellent sod strength.

Celebration is provides a dense weed free turf that is soft to touch; has a deep blue-green color;
has excellent spring greenup and excellent fall color retention; will grow in a wide variety of soils
(sand, sandy loam, clay or muck); has rapid horizontal growth from stolons/rhizomes providing
excellent wear and injury recovery; and has good resistance to insects and diseases.

Celebration ranked number 1 in Bermudas in a 2 year drought tolerance study conducted by
Texas A&M and SAWS (San Antonio Water Systems). Research also shows that Celebration’s
fertilizer requirements are much lower than other bermuda grasses.

Making the right choice. The type of grass most suitable for your lawn depends on the
variety of factors, including where in the country you're located, how you want your lawn to look
and how you'll be using your lawn.
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