Grass Guide: Spring Planting Tips

Anyone who’s lived in Central Texas through the hot spring and summer knows what a challenge growing grass can be. A lush, green patch of grass is a thing to envy. It’s a labor of love. But if you lay a good foundation and get grass off to a good start it will be a lot easier to maintain through the oppressive heat in the coming months.


Know What Type of Grass to Grow in Central Texas

You can set yourself up for failure or success simply based on the type of grass you choose to grow. There will be two factors you’re likely to battle with – heat and dryness. The type of grass you choose needs to be able to handle both. Another thing to consider is how thick the grass will grow. Thicker grass doesn’t suffer from wear and tear as easily.

Here are a few types of warm weather grasses that work well on a Texas lawn when planted in spring:

  • Bermuda – handles heat well but needs lots of sunlight and can also creep into your flower beds
  • Centipede Grass – grows dense and can handle moderate shade
  • Buffalo Grass – heat and drought resistant and doesn’t need much mowing
  • Zoysia Grass – slow growing but can become dense in sunny areas, tolerates partial shade and needs less water
  • St. Augustine Grass – very shade tolerant, grows low and dense

It’s worth mentioning that many of these come in a number of varieties, especially the Bermuda and Zoysia.

Seed or Sod – The Big Question

Homeowners are faced with a big decision when it comes to planting grass – seed or sod. The answer lies in what type of grass you are growing. Some varieties do better when started as seed, while others should be laid down as sod and some could swing either way.

  • Bermuda – Can be grown by seed, sod or plug.
  • Centipede Grass – Centipede grass can be planted by seed or sod.
  • Buffalo Grass – This type of grass can be grown as either seed or sod.
  • Zoysia Grass – Zoysia can be plugged, sodded or seeded.
  • St. Augustine Grass – St. Augustine is planted as plugs or sod not as seed.

If you’re going with a type of grass that can be grown either way below are a few things to keep in mind.

  • It will take seeds longer to grow whereas sod is rooted within a few weeks to a month.
  • Sod can be much more expensive than seeds.
  • Seed planted grass will have a more natural look when it grows in.
  • Growing from seed requires a little more prep and maintenance.

If you’re not experience in planting grass by seed it could be worth it to hire a landscaper to do the work for you. It will still be cheaper than sod and laying down a good foundation is critical for growing grass by seed.

Tips for Keeping Your Grass Healthy and Green

After you get your grass seeds planted or your sod laid down the work isn’t over yet. Now you’ve got to maintain your lawn to keep it lush and green during the spring and summer.

  • Weed early and often.
  • Water in the early morning or the late afternoon/early evening.
  • Lay down compost dressing in spring and fall – about a quarter inch or less.
  • Fertilize in the spring, but don’t go overboard.
  • Don’t cut the grass blades too short.

No matter what type of grass you choose to plant this spring the steps above will help you grow your lawn greener and healthier even in the Texas heat.

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