En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - June 27, 2013

From: Possum Kingdom lake, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Use of Turffalo in Possum Kingdom TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hello, we will be building a retirement home in the hillside area of Possum Kingdom Lake which currently has cactus, cedar, and some live oaks. Our intention is to keep most of the 8 acres natural with the hillside areas and have a lawn close to the house for our use and our two dogs. I recently saw an article on a grass called tuffalo. How does this compare to the native grass blends for our area of texas? It appears that we will need to add soil to plant once the house is built. There is what appears to be a sandy soil with lots of limestone rocks and it is almost totally sunny. we love the West Texas look. Is there hope for a dog, drought, low maintenance lawn for us?

ANSWER:

From Texas Tech University, developer of Turffalo, here is an article about this variation of Texas native grass Bouteloua dactyloides (Buffalograss), The Buffalo Reconfigured. When we searched our own Mr. Smarty Plants previous answers we found 11 questions and answers on this grass, beginning in 2007, with the most recent one in 2010. We especially noticed that most of the questions came in Spring, which is the appropriate time to plant grasses in Texas. Rather than try to summarize what we have said about this grass, here is a selection of our answers, by date.

March 12, 2007

April 7, 2007

March 5, 2008

March 17, 2008

June 26, 2009

Feb. 11, 2010

Before your question, that was the last time we were asked about it; we do not know the date of the article from Texas Tech. Now that you know all we know about Bouteloua dactyloides (Buffalograss), let us introduce you to Habiturf. You will notice in some of the articles referenced above that grasses that were a combination of three native grasses, including Buffalograss, made more sense and worked better as a lawn grass.

Here is some information on the new grass mix:

Habiturf - The Ecological Lawn This includes a video on planting and several more links

Native Lawns

We urge you to read all the material and watch the video. It was made while planting the lawn in the Homeowner's Garden at the Wildflower Center. You are thinking of this at a good time. You don't want to be putting in a lawn in the middle of the summer, and you certainly want all the construction equipment gone before you begin lawn preparations. You noted that you would probably need to put some soil on the area where the grass was to be planted, and there are recommendations for that in the articles, too.

 

 

 

More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Native xeric grasses for Colorado
June 24, 2010 - Tired of mowing - replacing western exposure full sun lawn with native xeric grass. Please explain the pros and cons of Bouteloua Gracilis (Blue Grama) and Bouteloua Dactyloides Bella (Bella Blue Gra...
view the full question and answer

Is there any bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum) in Austin, TX
August 10, 2011 - Hi there! Can you tell me if there is any Bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum) growing in the Austin area? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Turf grass for part-time home from Louisville KY
April 28, 2012 - We have a small yard at a remote location with cistern water, and need a turf grass for a yard, clay soil, which I am willing to amend. It will receive sporadic attention as my husband and I do not l...
view the full question and answer

Raised beds over lateral lines in Solgohachia AR
January 02, 2010 - I would like to build raised flower beds over my lateral lines. They would be planted with strawberries and perennials. Will this cause any problems with the absorption into the ground or not lettin...
view the full question and answer

Flowering plant for hillside in Brookings OR
April 16, 2009 - We live on the Chetco river and the bank in front of the house is on a hill. What would be a flowering plant that would maintain the integrity of the hill?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center