North American Grass Types for Gardening

Posted on Mar 16 2016 - 9:45am by Lilies and Daisies

Garden Grass in MinnesotaNorth America is home to a number of grass species. When choosing grass for your garden, why not try something that’s completely different? You can choose from rugged native grasses or go for exotic ornamental varieties. Each type requires a different kind of maintenance regime to keep them healthy.

Generally, you will want to trim your lawns regularly to keep them thick and uniform. Regularly watering them with a sprinkler system also helps, but different types of grass will require varying amounts of water.

You will also occasionally need to dethatch dry patches to prevent bald spots from occurring. According to The Lawnsmith, thatch is a brown layer of detritus made from old stems and runners, which prevents new grass from taking hold.

Cool Grasses

The U.S. has varying climates, ranging from temperate to tropical regions. As such, some grass types work well in cooler climates, while others work well in warmer climates. Several garden-variety grass species grow better in the cool season:

  • Kentucky bluegrass – a fine meadow grass originating from Europe
  • Fine Fescue – drought resistant, with a very fine texture
  • Ryegrass – a medium-coarse grass and popular for pastures
  • Tall Fescue – Hardy medium-course grass perfect for sports fields
Warm Grasses

Some grasses, on the other hand, are better suited for warm climates. Tropical and desert regions of the United States are well suited for hotter climates:

  • Zoysia – creeping coastal grass originally from Asia
  • Bermuda grass – short, densely woven grass that grows in thick patches
  • St. Augustine grass – broad-leafed grass that forms a thick carpet of leaves
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Native Grasses

Native grasses are not so attractive for lawn use, but are gaining popularity among natural landscaping enthusiasts. Many native grasses have tufted heads and grow in attractive bunches:

  • Big Bluestem Grass – bunch grass that forms little hill shapes
  • Blue Grama Grass – a tufted, decorative plant used for erosion control
  • Indian Grass – a prairie grass that looks golden in the sun and is found throughout America
  • Mexican Feather Grass – This native grass found throughout Mexico and Texas has beautiful tufts that resemble feathers

The right kind of grass for your garden makes all the difference.