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A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Wednesday - September 03, 2008

From: Huntsville, AL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: TIF 419 Bermudagrass vs. Zoysia
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I'm currently faced with the decision to sod my yard with TIF 419 or Zoysia. Zoysia is double the price so my knee jerk reaction is to go with Bermuda. Proponents of Zoysia claim it requires less mowing then other grasses and will choke out weeds. Does TIFF 419 posses similar characteristics in regard to infrequent mowing and a reasonable ability to choke out weeds once established? Thanks for your time.

ANSWER:

Sorry, you came to the wrong place to ask about that. Both grasses are non-native to North America. At the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center we specialize in the use and propagation of plants native to North America and to the area in which they are being grown, because they will need less water, fertilizer and maintenance. For possible alternatives, please see our How-To Articles on Using Native Plants and Native Lawns. If you decide to "go native" get back to us and we'll see what other help we can offer you.

 

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