About Turf-Type Fescue Grass

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This article will provide you with information about turf-type Fescue grass.
by Terry O'Leary · Zone 3A · -40° to -35° F to Zone 9A · 20° to 25° F · Lawn Care · 0 Comments · August 27, 2010 · 9,946 views

Turf Type Fescue Lawn

Overview of Turf-Type Tall Fescue Grasses

Turf-type Tall Fescue is a cool season grass. Unlike the warm season grasses such as Bermuda, zoysia and Centipede, fescue remains green during the winter and thrives best during the cooler months. Although growing best in environments that receive regular rainfall, tall fescue has fairly good drought tolerance if not mowed too low during the warm season (no less than 4 inches in height).

In the South, tall fescue is best adapted to those states in the transition zone - Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia and northern parts of North Carolina, Georgia and Texas.

Turf-type Fescue cultivars are known for their more dense, upright and lower growth habit. Additionally, they have a finer texture and darker green color than other fescues such as Ky 31. Furthermore, turf-type fescues are more drought tolerant.

Like other fescues, the turf-types are a cool season grass, which means they thrive during the cooler months of the year and maintain green color throughout the winter.

Soil Preferences: Turf-type fescues thrives in fertile, well-drained, fine textured soils but will adapt to many soil types. It is tolerant to low soil pH but is most productive when the soil pH is 5.8 to 6.5. If you have clay-type soil that does not crumble when squeezed in your hand, add organic soil ammendments to existing soil at time of installation. Or, for existing lawns that are hard-packed, aerate and apply gypsum and/or organic soil ammendments to enhance soil porosity.

Light Requirements: Tall Fescue grass can be grown in sun or shade however thrives in partial shade: morning sun with afternoon shade is preferred.

Climate Preferences: Tall Fescue grass has demonstrated excellent heat and cold tolerance. Its growing range extends from USDA hardiness Zones 3 through 8.

Irrigation: Though drought tolerant, turf-type fescues appreciate at least a once-a-week deep watering during prolong periods of dry weather. Do not over-water (avoid standing water for any period of time).NOTE: Always water during the early to late morning hours and never at night. Watering at night leads to fungal development.

When to Plant Fescue

In the South, the best planting season for fescue falls between Sept.15 through Nov. 1, depending upon your region. Planting early in the fall allows more time for seedlings to establish themselves before the hot summer weather sets in the following summer. Fescue lawns can also be planted and/or overseeded in the early spring - the earlier the better so as to establish a deeper root system before summer.

Terry O'Leary

Meet The Author

Terry O'Leary - Terry has been involved in golf course management since 1996. There isn't much he doesn't know about turf grass.

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Fescue Grass, Planting, Lawn, Turf-Type Fescue, Turf

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