Pro Tips From Central Florida Sod & Turf Experts

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What Are Warm Season Grasses? Understanding Florida Sod Types

Nov 30, 2018 | Turfgrass Products

Warm season grasses originally come from tropical regions, which is why they thrive so well in the high temperatures and bright sunshine here in Florida. These grasses grow best when temperatures are between 75-90°, meaning they do most of their growing in the summer. During the cooler months, after heavy freeze or frost, they go dormant and turn brown, returning to their green brilliance once it’s warm again in the spring.

The major grasses in this category are Bahia grass, Bermudagrass, St. Augustine grass, and Zoysia grass.

Bahia and St. Augustine grass are really popular in Florida and other Gulf states where the soil is often sandy. Bermudagrass and Zoysia are also very popular but can also be found in the “Transition Zone” – the area between North and South where both cool and warm season grasses are found.

Warm Season Grasses During Winter

Since most warm season grasses go dormant and turn brown during the winter, some people choose to overseed with annual or perennial ryegrass.

Ryegrass is a cool season grass that will stay green throughout the cool winter months in the south while the warm season grasses turn brown. In the spring when the warm weather returns, the warm season grass will green up, and eventually when the temperatures get warm enough, the ryegrass will die off. This is just another option for homeowners looking for a green lawn year-round.

Laying Warm Season Grasses

We’re very lucky in Florida to never really have extreme cold weather, meaning sod can be laid throughout the year. Even if you choose to lay your sod in the cooler months, by spring you will have a lush and green yard ready to be used for outdoor activities.

Likewise, you can lay warm season grass sod down during the summer, but you’ll have to make sure that you maintain enough moisture. 

Interested in Warm Season Grass for Your Florida Lawn?

Lake Jem Farms has spent years growing the best grass types for our Florida weather.  These turfgrasses include:

  • Zoysia Turf
  • Celebration Bermudagrass
  • Tifway 419 Bermudagrass
  • ProVista
  • Palmetto St. Augustine
  • Bitterblue St. Augustine
  • Seville St. Augustine
  • Floratam St. Augustine
  • Bahia Grass

You can explore the difference in these varieties here.