Can You Grow Buffalo Grass from Seed?

Buffalo Grass

You might have fallen in love with the idea of having buffalo grass growing in your garden, but are looking for a cheaper alternative to turf. So, can you grow buffalo grass from seed? The answer is technically yes… but it can be a little tricky and tedious to do so (and you’re probably better off using turf!). 

Want to learn more about buffalo grass, the common varieties available, and some reasons why growing them from seed proves difficult? Read on!

Problems with growing buffalo grass from seed

While buffalo grass can technically be grown from seed, it can be a very tricky process. In fact, it can be tricky to even locate buffalo grass seeds, let alone undertaking the growing procedure. Some of the issues surrounding growing buffalo grass from seed include: 

Lack of seeds available

Before you even think about planting, you’ll want to source your seeds. It can be quite tricky to find buffalo lawn seeds in Australia. Many popular varieties have actually been bred to be sterile, and do not produce seeds. This means that even those who breed turf tend to keep buffalo varieties going from a strip!

Poor return for effort

Buffalo grass seeds just aren’t that good at germinating. You could spend all day outside, sowing seeds, and still only have a small number sprout. This means more seeds need to be sourced in order to account for those that will not grow, costing more money, and taking more time. 

Tips for growing buffalo grass

So, now you might be wondering just how to grow buffalo grass. Well, the most popular option is growing it from turf. Growing buffalo grass from turf is a lot simpler than trying to grow it from seed. Below are some of our tips for growing and caring for buffalo grass. 

Plant in the spring or autumn if possible

The milder seasons are a good time to plant your buffalo grass turf, as they provide a good condition for the turf to become established. During the summer, newly planted grass will need to be watered regularly in order to keep hydrated, and you might find yourself needing to give your new grass a drink multiple times a day. The winter can also be a tricky time for the plant to become established due to the cooler weather, although this may be less applicable in hotter spots across the country. Choosing autumn or spring as the time to plant your buffalo grass is ideal.

Keep an eye on the thatch

Some varieties of buffalo lawn can be susceptible to thatch build-up. If you notice this happening with your grass, try mowing the lawn lower than you normally would a couple of times each year. Alternatively, you can call in the experts to perform a process known as vertimowing.

Fertilise

If you want your lawn to be looking its best, it’s a good idea to ensure you regularly fertilise it. You can fertilise your buffalo lawn around once every two months to keep it looking its best. Those who wish to do less maintenance may prefer to fertilise more infrequently, however, the colour of the grass may be less vibrant.

Why choose buffalo grass?

Buffalo grass is a gorgeous green turf that is low maintenance. It can grow well in both shady and sunny spots. This type of grass is also tolerant of drought conditions, making it ideal for hot Aussie summers when there can be little rain about. Those who prefer to be more hands-off about their lawn may choose buffalo grass due to its hardy nature and density (which means weeds can often struggle to take hold). There are several different varieties of buffalo grass available on the market, allowing you to choose one that best suits what you wish to get from your lawn.

Common varieties of buffalo grass

Here’s a little rundown of some of the more common varieties of buffalo grass:

Prestige Buffalo Grass

Prestige is a soft leaf buffalo grass that is low thatch and has a good tolerance to wear. This tolerance means it can be great for those who love to entertain or have kids (or pets!) who enjoy frequently running about on the lawn. This variety of buffalo grass has a dark green colour that remains in the leaves all year round, meaning you can impress the neighbours with your lawn with minimal upkeep! 

Sapphire Buffalo Grass

Sapphire is another low maintenance variety of lawn that can hold its colour all year round. Sapphire buffalo grass grows well in shade, making it a good choice for gardens that have plenty of tree coverage. The leaves of Sapphire grass are very fine, and fold to create a gentle, wispy blade once they have matured.

Palmetto Buffalo Grass

Sometimes referred to as Palmetto St Augustine, this variety of buffalo grass is tolerant of both frost and drought. It can handle moderate shade or full sun and has a soft leaf. Palmetto is low maintenance and tends to require less mowing than many other grasses. It is also good at holding its stunning emerald green colouring throughout the winter months. 

Sir Walter Buffalo Grass

Sir Walter buffalo grass is a highly popular grass found across many Australian lawns. It is good at tolerating drought conditions, plus can handle shade well, requiring just 2 or 3 hours of full sun each day to thrive. This low maintenance lawn also tolerates wear, making it ideal for families who like outdoor activities and socialising. 

Other common varieties of buffalo grass include Matilda and King’s Pride.

If you are set on growing your lawn from seed, it would be best to choose a different type of grass such as Couch, Kentucky Bluegrass of Kikuyu. Still love the idea of having buffalo grass as your lawn? Why not consider installing buffalo grass as turf? If you need help doing so, you can always contact your friendly, local team from Jim’s Mowing to lend a hand! 

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