Secret To Grow Bermuda Grass

The popularity and application of Bermuda grass lawns remains almost unrivalled amongst other warm season grasses in many of the warmer regions of the world. Compared to other warm climate lawn options, Bermuda grass is very inexpensive to purchase, has a fine soft leaf and pleasing appearance, and withstands wear and tear very well. However there are also some equally compelling negative traits which should be taken into account prior to a final decision being made as to whether or not to purchase and install a new Bermuda grass lawn for our homes.

Positive Traits Of Bermuda Grass Lawns

Bermuda grass is one of the most economical turf choices when deciding on a new lawn type. This lower cost is due to how quickly a turf farm can grow a new crop of this grass variety and how many crops they can produce each year when compared to other lawn types suitable for warm climates, rapid growth rates mean cheaper prices for the customer.

Overall, Bermuda grass is a dependable and rugged lawn type, it can take quite a bit of neglect and still be restored back to health with relative ease, this dependable grass can resist and fight off many types of lawn pests and diseases and can be treated for pests and disease with almost all available weed, pest and fungus treatments, whereas many other lawn types may not be suitable for treatment with these same cures.

Lawn mowing heights can vary when growing Bermuda grass in different environments, it can be mowed higher in shade to make the lawn a little more shade tolerant, or it can be mowed very low with a reel mower when grown in full sun. With this said, this lawn type will not look its best nor will it keep well over time if the height of the lawn is kept too high.

Further, Bermuda has a beautiful soft and fine leaf which is suitable for children and pets to play on and is pleasing to the eye. Any damage from play will usually be self-repaired fairly quickly if the lawn is being kept in good overall condition, so backyard sports and a bit of mischievousness by the family dog will not trouble this lawn at all.

Drought tolerance of Bermuda lawns can be very high if the lawn is trained correctly to grow a deeper root system, via less frequent watering schedules.

Negative Traits Of Bermuda Grass Lawns

Along with all the positive traits of this highly popular lawn variety are some negative aspects which must also be taken into account and considered before choosing this lawn type. Keeping in mind also that there is no such thing as a perfect grass type, only a grass which is best suited to our own needs and requirements.

A Bermuda lawn which is regularly mowed at higher heights will be prone to thatch. De-thatching the lawn may be required every so often to keep this thatch level under control. Each lawn will be different as to any thatch buildup, with some lawns requiring de-thatching every year, and others once every several years or perhaps never.

Bermuda grass is a full sun turf, which will always perform at its best in full sun or high sunlight conditions. The more shade is apparent, the more likely the lawn will die off in these affected areas. So hoping that our Bermuda grass lawn will nicely grow from a full sun backyard and all the way under our favorite willow tree, may not be a reasonable assumption, that willow tree may just need to have some other type of shade tolerant ground cover under its drooping branches.

This lawn variety is also susceptible to almost all lawn weeds, pests and diseases. A healthy lawn will more naturally resist any infestation of these lawn problems, and almost all treatment options for weeds, pests and diseases will work very well with Bermuda turf.

Lastly, if the lawn is kept in good condition, this will mean that Bermuda grass will require more frequent lawn mowing due to its sometimes rapid growth rates during the warmer growing seasons. Which can be somewhat controlled by applying a little less fertilizer and water to the lawn. This same healthy growth rate can also see Bermuda grass runners creeping into surrounding garden beds a little more quickly than other grass types.

Conclusion

As previously stated, there is no one perfect lawn type for everyone or for every yard, every type of turf has positive and negative traits, and it’s up to us as homeowners to choose carefully and wisely which grass will be the best choice for our homes and our requirements. There are very good reasons why Bermuda grass is one of the most popular lawn varieties in the warmer parts of the world, and there can be major differences between the varying brands of Bermuda turf which are available for homeowners to consider. A little research and homework will ensure we choose the best turf for our needs.

 

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How To Mowing Your Own Land

There are many reasons why lawns are left to become overgrown, the property may have been left vacant for a long period of time, the property may be rented and the gardens not cared about by either the owner or the tenant, a busy lifestyle may just push our lawn care routines so low to the bottom of our list of priorities that we realize one day we have a real problem with an unsightly overgrown yard that now needs to be dealt with.

No matter the reason why our turf may have become overgrown, it’s now time to deal with the problem and to bring our lawns back into full health and control once more. However, mowing an overgrown lawn can bring risk of damage to the lawn if we’re not careful in how we go about cutting back the excess growth, as mowing an overgrown lawn can actually result in severely damaging the lawn or perhaps even killing the lawn if the mowing is not done correctly.

Why Mowing An Overgrown Lawn Can Cause Damage

All growth of lawns comes from a part of the grass called a crown. It is from these crowns which spring forth new runners in warm season grasses, as well as new lawn leaf material in all grasses. If these crowns are damaged or removed during lawn mowing then it becomes impossible for new lawn growth to occur at all, which in turn can kill the grass in any affected turf areas where this occurs.

In cool season grasses, if we kill the crowns the entire affected area of turf will also die as a result. However for some warm season grasses such as Zoysia and Bermuda grasses, these lawn types also have underground runners which can repair a lawn where the above surface lawn has been killed or had its crowns removed with lawn mowing. Though it is not a guarantee that all warm season lawns will repair when they are severely damaged.

The problem we have with overgrown turf is that these crowns can raise far higher above the soil level whenever the lawn becomes overgrown. Then when we mow the overgrown lawn at our regular lawn mowing heights, we can in fact be removing the now raised crowns in the lawn mowing process, thus severely damaging or even killing the lawn in the affected area where this has occurred.

We therefore need to adjust our mowing practice whenever we are tackling an overgrown lawn to bring it back into an orderly state.

Mowing An Overgrown Lawn Safely

If we are going to begin to mow our yards more frequently from now on, then the very best solution for us in managing an overgrown grass is to slowly reduce lawn mowing heights over time. Not taking too much leaf material off in the first lawn mowing, and then perhaps slowly reducing lawn mowing heights at every third service, until slowly we get our lawns back to their optimal mowing heights.

This method is the safest of all, and while it does take some time to bring our lawns back to their best appearance, it will never risk damaging the turf. What is happening in this process is two-fold: firstly we are never removing these crowns while lawn mowing, so the grass doesn’t die off; secondly, as the turf is slowly being lowered over time, the turf will adjust itself to this new growing environment by continuously growing all its new crowns at the lower heights that we have introduced. Slowly, over time, we have safely lowered the lawn height and safely trained the lawn to grow all new crowns lower and closer to the soil level where they belong.

Mowing An Overgrown Lawn In A Single Lawn Mowing

As already discussed, this will be safer to do with a warm season lawn than with a cool season lawn, so the risk and results of this remain with the lawn owner or whomever is mowing the overgrown lawn.

If this is a single lawn mowing meant to quickly tidy up an overgrown lawn, then it would also be expected that we wouldn’t want to kill the lawn in the process. Therefore the best method of mowing an overgrown lawn which is not going to be regularly mowed thereafter would be to mow the lawn at the highest height possible which is acceptable to the lawn owner.

By mowing at this higher height we are doing our very best not to be damaging or removing too many grass crowns during the lawn mowing process, therefore this will give us our best result to maintain a lawn which remains alive and in the best possible health after this lawn mowing. While the lawn will not look at its best, it is the safest possible option for us in this situation and to ensure the ongoing survival of the lawn.

Final Notes About Mowing Long Grass

There are often hidden obstacles in long overgrown grass, this could be anything from rocks, toys, glass, tools, or any manner of things. Such objects could become dangerous if hit with lawn mower blades, creating a projectile which risks damage to people or property. Therefore all long grass areas should be carefully checked prior to any lawn mowing taking place.

Finally, whenever we remove a lot of grass leaf material with a single mowing, we are going to be cutting into the brown thatch layer of the turf, and the longer the lawn becomes, so too will the thatch layer increase in height also. Therefore we should expect a browning off on the grass wherever a lot of green leaf has been removed at once. As long as the lawn is properly watered and cared for after the lawn mowing, this thatch layer should decrease over a short period of time and new green leaf grown by the lawn.

 

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