Grass is used for turf because it grows fast and can quickly regenerate. Grass is highly adapted from herbivores eating it all day, such as cows. Picking and maintaining the grass in your yard can make all the difference (and your neighbors jealous)
The main type of grass used in Golf courses and most homes is Creeping Bentgrass, (Agrostis stolonifera). Your yard probably has this grass growing in it making it nice and green. Creeping Bentgrass is found in more than 80% of Golf courses in the world.
Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua)
The other grass that makes up that 20% or so is Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua). This Bluegrass is a super weed! It can adapt to almost any environment. This grass is the number one grass found in New York City sidewalks. It can quickly adapt to herbicides making it a major pain for golf courses. The ironic part is that for the older golf courses it is the turf. It can shrink itself below the mowing height and make an acceptable golf course. You can not buy commercial seed bags of Poa annua, but you can buy it’s relative Poa supina. Poa supina is used often for soccer fields.
Bermuda Grass (Cynodon dactylon)
If you live in the Southern United States you probably know Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon). It not actually native to Bermuda, but is an invasive species there. Be careful this grass is fast growing and can take over other areas you might have wanted grass free. Bermuda grass is very hardy and can stand high humidity and temperatures.
For non-grass alternatives for your yard consider your climate first. Ask yourself what type of biome do you live in? Do you live in a forest? Near the sea? A desert? Meadows? After you have an answer then look at what plants typically live there.
For forest consider seeing what happens if you don’t mow a piece of your yard. Trees will probably start growing. A forest area could have ferns instead of grass with more trees in the yard.
A beach home would be able to grow succulent plants and bushy plants like California sagebrush (Artemisia californica).
Desert homes could grow cactus on their yard. Just be careful where you step with your Cactus Yard.
If you live in a meadow area then consider planting wildflowers.
Each yard is a unique collection of species that represent the local environment around them. For a more beautiful yard look for around for nature’s solutions and you’ll be guaranteed to have a wonderful lawn.
Look at what type of environment you live in and consider one of these types of plants for it. Here is the list we suggest:
- Creeping Bentgrass
- Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua)
- Bermuda Grass (Cynodon dactylon)
- California sagebrush (Artemisia californica)
- Local wildflowers.