Grass for South Florida - Knowledgebase Question

Punta Gorda, FL
Question by bjw6
February 9, 1998
I have 5 1/2 acres with about a quarter in part shade. My lawn is now very thin and a mixture of everything. What will grow well in this area and not cost a fortune to plant?


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Answer from NGA
February 9, 1998

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With such a large place, it would be to your advantage to plant Argentine Bahia. Argentine Bahia does not have as many seed heads as does other Bahia varieties. Argentine Bahia can be grown from seed which is abundant and relatively inexpensive.

Once established these grasses develop an extensive root system, which makes them one of the most drought tolerant of the lawn grasses. Mole crickets would have to be controlled. They are the biggest problem for bahia. Bahia needs full sun. It will not do well at all in shaded areas.

No grass can grow in dense shade. Some St. Augustine varieties will do well in part shade. St. Augustine grass is always vegetatively propagated. There is no seed available for St. Augustine. You will need to sod, plug or sprig it. Some varieties that will tolerate some shade are:
Bitterblue
Delmar
Floratine (probably the best for shade)
Jade
Seville (next best)

If you have areas of deep shade, I would suggest using a groundcover such asmondo grass or ivy.

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