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Mr. Smarty Plants - Short native turf grass for Texas lawn

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Saturday - January 31, 2009

From: Cedar Creek, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Turf
Title: Short native turf grass for Texas lawn
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I would like a native grass mix that doesn't get too tall. It is mostly sun with afternoon shade. Mowing wouldn't be a problem, but not necessary. The soil is pretty good but shallow.I hate the bermuda grass and with the drought we have no grass. It can be protected from foot traffic for as long as needed. All mixes have bluestems that are too tall and coarse for this area. It's my front yard or whats left of it.I've removed all the existing grass and have made large flower and shrub beds. This is a small area that I'd like to be restive after all the other plantings around it.

ANSWER:

Please go to the web site of Native American Seed in Junction Texas and see their Native Sun Turfgrass mix, a combination of 66% Bouteloua dactyloides (buffalograss) and 34%  Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama).  Both of these grasses have a maximum height of less than a foot, require little water and need little or no mowing.  Both grasses do best in full sun, but it sounds like you might have enough sun to make them happy.  Also, on the Native American Seed site, check out their Planting Tips for Native Grasses and on our Wildflower Center site, please read Native Lawns:  Buffalograss.  If you find that the shadier areas of your lawn aren't doing as well you would like, you could consider putting sedges there.  Here are two possibilities that grow less than a foot high and are evergreen:

Carex planostachys (cedar sedge) grows in part shade.

Carex texensis (Texas sedge) grows in sun and part shade.


Bouteloua dactyloides

Bouteloua gracilis

Carex planostachys

Carex texensis

 

 

 

 

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