Don’t despair, though, there are several varieties of grasses for zone9 lawns that can survive these stressful conditions. Warm season grasses usually cannot survive the cool winters of areas in the north.
Likewise, cool season grasses usually cannot survive the intensely hot summers of the south. In warm arid areas, maintaining a year-round lawn requires a lot of watering.
Some zone9 lawn grasses may turn yellow or brown if winter temperatures get too long. Rye grass, even the perennial variety, will grow as an annual grass in zone9, meaning it will die out when temperatures become too high.
Much depends on what type of grass you choose, and if you choose the “wrong” type for your area, you’re in for high water bills, lots of mowing and possibly an unhealthy landscape environment. It’s also adapted to a wide range of soil types, does fairly well in moderate shade and provides good coverage with minimal mowing.
St. Augustine is a “carpet” grass that creates a great low-profile lawn with high heat tolerance. Augustine does not handle high foot traffic well and is not recommended for areas with drought issues. Suggested varieties: Flora tam, Raleigh, Seville.
This warm-season perennial grass thrives in the absence of high irrigation and fertilization, needs little mowing and is perfect for those wanting a more low-maintenance native or meadow look. Buffalo grass is native to the Great Plains and adapts widely to other warm climates.
In southern climates it performs fairly well in semi shaded areas, but the farther north you go, it’ll need more sun. It’s an extremely drought-tolerant grass, and although it will turn straw colored during severe drought conditions, it will respond very favorably to subsequent irrigation.
This grass has excellent wear tolerance, making it perfect for lawns, golf courses and play areas. Because of the slow growth rate, Zosma has poor recuperative potential when it’s been damaged or overused.
Although not native to the United States, it is well adapted and widely found in low-lying pasture areas of the Pacific Northwest and South. Tall rescue should not be used in areas that require grass to be mowed to less than 1½ inches during the summer.
Bluegrass is a cool-season grass that grows well in the fall, winter and spring but will go dormant in the hot summer. It should be noted, however, that there are a number of different varieties of bluegrass with varying levels of drought tolerance and mowing requirements.
One of the main features that makes bluegrass such a popular choice is that it is adapted to a very wide variety of uses: lawns, play areas, golf courses, sports fields etc. Kentucky's bluegrass will not perform in areas of deeper shade, and will need regular fertilizing to look its best.
The grass types contained in each group have their own climate preferences and growing abilities according to temperatures. USDA Hardiness zones 1 and 2 comprise the southern reaches of Canada, Alaska and a small part of northern Minnesota.
These are the coldest zones in the United States, with minimum winter temperatures falling below -45 degrees Fahrenheit. USDA Zone 3 (minimum temperatures of -30 to -40 degrees Fahrenheit) includes small northernmost portions of Maine, Vermont, New York, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Montana, as well as most of North Dakota and small, high-elevation parts of Wyoming, Colorado and Idaho.
The best grass types for Zone 3 are blue grasses, perennial rye grass and creeping red rescue. Perennial rye grass creates a medium-textured, low-maintenance lawn, while creeping red rescue is a fine-textured grass with moderate maintenance demands.
USDA Hardiness Zone 4 (-20 to -30 degrees Fahrenheit) encompasses the middle regions of Maine and New York, most of New Hampshire, Vermont, Wyoming, South Dakota, Montana and Wisconsin, the northern half of Iowa and Nebraska, the northernmost tip of Michigan, large parts of Colorado and Idaho, as well as small mountainous areas of New Mexico, Nevada and Oregon. USDA Zone 3 (minimum temperatures of -30 to -40 degrees Fahrenheit) includes small northernmost portions of Maine, Vermont, New York, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Montana, as well as most of North Dakota and small, high-elevation parts of Wyoming, Colorado and Idaho.
USDA zones 5 and 6 (0 to -20 degrees Fahrenheit) include the southern parts of Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Michigan, Iowa and Nebraska, the lower-elevation portions of Colorado, most of inland Washington and Oregon, most of Nevada and Utah, northern Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and Virginia, as well as all of Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Zone 7 (0 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit) includes most of Virginia and North Carolina, southern parts of Tennessee, Oklahoma and New Mexico, northern South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas and Texas, as well as small areas of Arizona, Utah, Nevada, California, Oregon and Washington.
USDA zones 5 and 6 (0 to -20 degrees Fahrenheit) include the southern parts of Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Michigan, Iowa and Nebraska, the lower-elevation portions of Colorado, most of inland Washington and Oregon, most of Nevada and Utah, northern Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and Virginia, as well as all of Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. USDA Hardiness Zone 8 (10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit) includes coastal North Carolina, South Carolina, New Mexico, Washington and Oregon, southern Nevada, Arizona, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Texas, most of Louisiana, northern Florida, as well as many parts of California.
St. Augustine grass is coarse with a moderate care level, and it is usually only grown from sod, not seed. USDA Hardiness Zone 8 (10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit) includes coastal North Carolina, South Carolina, New Mexico, Washington and Oregon, southern Nevada, Arizona, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Texas, most of Louisiana, northern Florida, as well as many parts of California.
This is determined by the season of the grass type's active growth period. This critical information applies to lawn, sports turf and pasture grass.
The Climate Zone Map is a color coded map for the selection of grass types based on CLIMATE (rainfall, etc) and TEMPERATURE. This number will be used in the grass zone chart below to indicate the best types of grass for the location selected.
Match your location color with the Number from the chart, on the right of the map. Then locate your area on the grass type zone table below.
7-10 Oversee St. Augustine 9 -101/2 – 11/4” to 1/2”Spring & April-August8 to 10 Zoysiagrass 8 – 9 -10-11-121-2 (raw seed) 2-3 (coated)1/4” to 1/2”Spring & April-Augustlower 5 to 10 Please find below an alternative climate map that displays the actual five primary climate regions of the USA. As you can see in this map the transition zone does not really cross the entire middle section of the USA.
Zosma grass is also grown in the western and most southern parts of this zone. Bermuda grass is the most common species used but can suffer winter damage in the most northern areas.
Zosma grass is widely used here and in the northern parts of this zone. Because the transition zone has cold winters that can kill warm-season grasses and hot summers that can kill cool-season species, this zone is the most challenging in which to grow turf grass.
Many turf experts recommend tall turf type rescue grass for the transition zone as it is the most drought tolerant of the cool season grasses, and it is tolerant of cold winters as well. Showy and easy to grow, these native U.S. grasses combine handsome, slender leaves with eye-catching flower plumes that typically appear in late summer and fall.
Plants tolerate heat and drought, but they look better and grow larger if given supplemental water. Dark green foliage forms a mound to 34 feet tall and at least as wide.
Very showy flower plumes, like puffs of rosy red smoke, rise 2 feet above the foliage in early fall. Resembles bamboo, with slender, pendulous, woody stems set with narrow, bright green leaves up to 3 inches long.
From summer into fall, reddish or purplish flower spikes rise 23 feet above the foliage; they fade to cream with age. Considered by some to be a variety of Muhlenbergia capillaries, this plant is shorter and blooms a little later in the year.
Narrow, dark green leaves form mounds 23 feet tall and wide. Rosy purple, wispy plumes rise an additional 2 feet in mid- to late fall.
Young leaves are used by the Gullah people of South Carolina to make traditional baskets. Called sweet grass because of its pleasant fragrance, which some liken to the scent of freshly mown hay.
Blooms of the species fade to gray; those of 'Amber Glow' turn yellow in fall. Bright green leaves form a dense, tight clump to 4 feet high and wide.
Slender yellow or purplish flower spikes rise 2 feet above the leaves in autumn; they are erect at first, then leaning.