Shade-tolerant lawns

Having a garden with lots of shade can be fantastic in the hot summer months. Shady spots offer a place to retreat from the harsh heat and are great for entertainers who tend to spend a lot of the summer outdoors. But shade can cause issues for many types of lawns. Often, lawns need a certain amount of sunlight during the day, and if you have a lawn that isn’t shade-tolerant, you may notice spots that receive less sun begin browning, struggling and dying off. 

In this article, we take a look at two different types of shade-tolerant lawns that you may wish to consider if you have a garden that receives a lot of shade during the day. 


Buffalo grasses are very good at tolerating shade, and there are many different varieties to choose from! Varieties such as Sir Walter Buffalo offer a soft-leaf, shade-tolerant grass that is also tolerant of drought, frost, wear, and full-sun, making it a versatile option for those who have a yard with varying levels of shade. Sir Walter grass can grow while receiving as little as three hours of sun each day, and its ability to self-repair quickly makes it a low-maintenance option. 

Another shade-tolerant buffalo variety is Palmetto, which is a low-maintenance grass, known for holding its colour during the winter months. Palmetto is also frost and drought-tolerant and is good at handling wear.  It has a soft leaf and requires just three or four hours of sun each day, and has a deep root system which contributes to its hardiness. 


Zoysia is another broad category of grass with varieties that are good at tolerating shade. One example of this is Sir Grange. Sir Grange is another low-maintenance grass that has a high tolerance for shade. This grass also has a good resistance against drought, making it well-suited for areas across Australia that experience such conditions. Sir Grange is a fine leaf grass that is versatile and can also handle full sun and frequent wear. While it can handle additional levels of sunshine, Sir Grange only requires three hours of sunlight a day to survive. 

Another variety of Zoysia that can tolerate shady yards pretty well is Empire Zoysia. Empire Zoysia is a fine leaf grass that can handle drought and wear and can grow in less-ideal soil types like clay and sandy soil. Empire Zoysia also has a tolerance for salt, making it a variety worth considering for those that live along Australia’s coastlines. Requiring just four to five hours of full sun a day, Empire Zoysia is a variety of grass that is relatively tolerant of shady spots. Having a shady yard doesn’t mean you have to settle for a lawn with dead patches. There are many varieties of lawn out there that have been bred to handle shade conditions. If you have a garden which experiences large patches or frequent amounts of shade, it can be worth doing some research on the best type of lawn for your yard.

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