The Lowdown on Buffalo Grass: Everything You Need to Know

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Are you considering planting buffalo grass in your yard or commercial property but don’t know much about it? Look no further than this article! Buffalo grass is a hardy, drought-resistant grass that is becoming increasingly popular among homeowners and landscapers alike. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive into everything you need to know about buffalo grass, from its characteristics to how to maintain it.

What is Buffalo Grass?

Buffalo grass (Buchloe dactyloides) is a warm-season turfgrass native to North America. It grows naturally on the Great Plains and is commonly found in Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. Buffalo grass has broad, curled leaves that are blue-green in color and a distinctive wispy texture. It is a low-growing grass, often reaching a maximum height of six inches.

Characteristics of Buffalo Grass

– Drought-resistant: Buffalo grass has a deep root system that allows it to withstand drought conditions better than many other grasses. During periods of drought, buffalo grass will go dormant and will resume growth when sufficient moisture returns.
– Low-maintenance: Buffalo grass requires less water and maintenance than other grasses, such as fescue or bluegrass. It is ideal for those who want a lush lawn without spending a lot of time or money on upkeep.
– Good for erosion control: Buffalo grass’s deep root system also makes it an excellent choice for erosion control on slopes and hillsides.
– Tolerates heat: Buffalo grass is well-adapted to hot, dry climates and can tolerate temperatures up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
– Sensitive to shade: Buffalo grass requires full sun to thrive and will struggle in areas with more than 20 percent shade.

How to Plant Buffalo Grass

Before planting buffalo grass, it’s important to prepare the soil correctly. Ideally, the soil should be tilled to a depth of at least six inches. Remove any debris, rocks, or large clumps of soil. Then, rake the soil to create a smooth, level surface.

There are several methods for planting buffalo grass, including seeding, sodding, and plugging. Seeding is the most common and cost-effective method, but it requires the most patience since it can take up to two years for buffalo grass to fully establish from seed. Sodding and plugging are faster methods but are typically more expensive.

How to Maintain Buffalo Grass

Once established, buffalo grass requires very little maintenance. The most important thing is to water it deeply once a week to encourage deep root growth. Fertilization should be done sparingly, as buffalo grass prefers lean soil. Mowing should be done regularly, but never remove more than one-third of the grass blade length at a time.

Concluding Thoughts on Buffalo Grass

Buffalo grass is an attractive, low-maintenance grass choice for those who live in hot, dry climates. Its deep roots make it an excellent choice for erosion control, and it requires minimal upkeep compared to other grasses. While it may not be the best choice for those in shady areas, it is an excellent choice for those seeking a lush, low-maintenance lawn.

FAQs About Buffalo Grass

Q: Is buffalo grass good for high-traffic areas?

A: Yes! Buffalo grass is a durable grass that can handle moderate foot traffic without a problem.

Q: Can I plant buffalo grass in the fall?

A: Yes, fall is a great time to plant buffalo grass. The cooler temperatures and more frequent rainfall will help the grass establish faster than during the hot summer months.

Q: Can buffalo grass be planted in clay soil?

A: Yes, buffalo grass can be planted in clay soil, but it will require more frequent watering to establish.

Q: Does buffalo grass attract pests?

A: No. Buffalo grass is relatively pest-free and requires few pesticides or herbicides.

Q: Can I plant buffalo grass in an area with partial shade?

A: Buffalo grass requires full sun to thrive and will struggle in areas with more than 20 percent shade.

In conclusion, buffalo grass is an excellent choice for those seeking an attractive, low-maintenance lawn. Its deep roots make it well-suited for drought conditions, and it is relatively pest-free. If you live in a hot, dry climate and are looking for a low-maintenance grass, buffalo grass may be the perfect choice for you!


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