If Bermuda grass does not sound tropical to you, I don’t know what else would. What is it doing in Kansas if it’s tropical? That’s a good question.
The answer is simple: Because it can. Northeastern Kansas has the unique distinction of being in the transition zone between the northern and southern zones (5 & 7).
What does this mean? Another great question.
In the 1500s, Bermuda grass was brought to America by the Spanish from Africa. This dense, attractive grass is also known as South Grass and is used for lawns.
It can also be found in pastures, in parks, on golf courses, and other areas.
Learn more about Bermuda grass planting and how to do it.
Info about Growing Bermuda Grass
Bermuda Grass posses a strong root system that can tolerate a variety of soils and is very durable. It is a great grass for sports fields because it can be quickly repaired.
You can grow Bermuda grass in full sunlight or a little shade. It doesn’t tolerate deep shade. It is spread by underground runners, called rhizomes, and above-ground runners called stolons.
It is a hot, sunny, stabilization turf for slopes. It is tough to control its growth habits, making it difficult to avoid flower gardens and other areas.
Bermuda grass can be mowed at any height from 1/2 inch to 2 inches, depending on how much maintenance you want to maintain.
Bermuda grass will form a dense, even turf if it is mowed twice per week at 1″ with a reel mower.
Bermuda grass requires less maintenance as it needs to be mowed at 2 inches. Higher turf will require less water and have fewer weeds.
When you need to mow higher than 1 in., a rotary mower is the best choice.
Bermuda should be watered more often than fescues, but not on an annual basis. The soil and turf should be monitored.
It would help if you watered when the soil is dry and hot. Watch out for signs of wilting. Wilting can be accompanied by a change of turf color from a bluish-gray to a yellowish-gray.
Allow the turf to soak to 6-8 inches. To prevent rooting in shallow areas, avoid frequent and light watering.
Apply fertilizer May-August. Apply 1 pound of fertilizer to 1,000 feet of lawn to avoid excessive growth. An analysis of the soil will determine what type and how many nutrients you should apply.
Bermuda lawns are generally free from weeds. However, weed invasions can occur in the spring and fall when Bermuda is still dormant.
Bermuda is unable to compete against these weeds. The main weed problems are chickweed and henbit.
These weeds are best controlled in the fall when they are still young. These weeds are winter annuals that will die in the summer heat.
Insect problems are generally not associated with Bermuda grass.
If the heat and humidity are not enough to make you feel tropical, grow warm-season grass. Then enjoy a refreshing drink with a small umbrella.
How to Grow Bermuda Grass
Bermuda grass isn’t picky about the type of soil and can tolerate salt spray. This makes it an attractive option for coastal areas. Bermuda grass can tolerate partial shade but will thrive in full sun.
Bermuda grass was once grown from sod or sprigs, but it is now readily available in seed form. Use 1 pound (0.50kg) of Bermuda grass for best results.
1 pound (0.50 kg) of hulled Bermuda grass for every 1,000 square feet (93 sq. m. The grass grows quickly and can be difficult to remove once it has started growing. Begin by raking the area that will be seeded.
Mix equal amounts of sand with seed. For smaller areas, the seed can be spread using a spreader or manually.
Spread half the mixture along the length of the lawn and half crosswise to avoid any skips.
Bermuda Grass Care
Bermuda grass care can be simple. While the grass is growing, it only requires light watering every day. After the grass has been established, you can reduce the frequency of watering and increase the amount of water required per session.
One inch (2.5 cm) of watering is required for the grass to grow. If there isn’t significant rainfall, the grass will need one inch (2.5 cm) per week.
When the grass grows to 2 inches (5 cm), it is ready for mowing. It can then be mowed using a sharp blade.
Mowing will encourage the grass to grow stronger and more evenly.
Six weeks after planting, fertilize with a slow-releasing complete fertilizer. Pre-emergence weed control should be applied in the fall.
Dark Side Of Bermuda Grass
Bermuda grass is not only a destroyer of native plants but also becomes a huge pain for anyone who unwisely opts to use it for an inexpensive lawn.
Right now, there is green up and down the alleys, in the washes, in the cracks in the sidewalks, and – if you’re really unlucky – in your flowerbeds.
Anyone who has tried to remove it from unwanted landscaping areas has learned the hard way that it is close to impossible to eradicate and takes repeated efforts to do the job totally.
So how does one have a lawn? Use hybrid sod that makes no seed. Yes, sod is more expensive than seed.
Since this hybrid grass makes no seed, it is grown from plugs, little sprigs of grass placed at intervals and carefully tended to make a thick continuous carpet.
That is cut into sod, which is laid like tile on your prepared area.
Your benefits are:
* Slow-growing grass needs much less mowing.
* No pollen is created, reducing allergy problems.
* No seeds are around to blow around your yard and around the desert, where it squeezes out more important plant life forms.