Selecting Appropriate Turfgrass Species

The lawn is generally a significant and permanent part of the home landscape; therefore, selecting the appropriate turfgrass species for the landscape is an important decision. Remember that regional differences exist in wear, drought, heat, and cold tolerance.

Turf species are often planted in mixes. Blends of cultivars or species increase genetic diversity which improves resistance to disease and pest problems.

When selecting turfgrass species, consider the following qualities:

  • Winter hardiness
  • Heat tolerance
  • Amount of sunlight
  • Water requirements
  • Fertilizer needs
  • Mowing requirements
  • Weed control
  • Diseases and pests
  • Soil conditions and type
  • Invasive qualities (spread into surrounding areas)
Turf grass species and maintenance for Florida
Video source: Your Florida Lawn – North Florida Lawns
a strip of turfgrass on a slope between two concrete edge walls
Somewhat water-wise turfgrasses, such as Zoysia, can contribute to a lush-looking landscape in hot humid climates. Photo credit: Dinesh Valke Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
close up of buffalo grass
Buffalo grass is a good water-wise choice for hot dry climates. It can be kept mowed or un-mowed for a more natural look. Photo credit: colorado art studio Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Additional Turfgrass Selection Resources:


Idaho: Types of Grass


Ohio: Selecting Turfgrass for Lawns
Missouri: Managing Lawns and Turfgrass


Arkansas: Choosing a Grass for Arkansas Lawns
Florida: Selecting a Turfgrass for Florida Lawns
Florida: Turfgrass Selection
South Carolina: Selecting a Lawn Grass


Texas: Zoysiagrass
Texas: St. Augustine Grass