Growing an Uncommon Lawn in Your Area

I have grown a Hybrid Bluegrass Turf-Type Tall Fescue blend for years in PHOENIX! It grows well everywhere until July 4th. It then declines, especially in full sun. I then reseed in the last weekend of September or the 1st weekend of October. It does so well in shade that there are areas I don’t even need to seed at all in the fall!

I highly recommend over-seeding with Hybrid Bluegrass and/or Turf-Type Tall Fescue INSTEAD of Ryegrass in areas too shady for Bermuda. Hybrid Bluegrass and Turf-Type Tall Fescue are similar to Perennial Ryegrass as they are both cool-season grasses. However, they both have more heat tolerance than Ryegrass. Think of it as a ryegrass substitute that is green year-round in shady spots.

It takes 6-21 days to germinate. For best results, core aerate any hard, compacted soil, use starter fertilizer, and apply a thin layer of soil on top of the seed.

You MUST maintain the Hybrid Bluegrass and Fescue at 2.5” MINIMUM mowing height, preferably 3” or higher for better heat and drought tolerance. It will need MORE watering than Bermuda, but LESS than Ryegrass.

Alternative Options:

St. Augustine looks a little like crabgrass
Zoysia looks more like Bermuda, but it is really hard to find and grows really slowly.

St. Augustine and Zoysia grow well in the summer, but go dormant in the winter like Bermuda, and DON’T tolerate over-seeding.

Another option is artificial grass