When you are planting your yard or inter-seeding your thin lawn, it is important to use the seed that is right for your environment.

When shopping for seed, keep in mind that you’ll need to use seed suitable for your specific temperate climate zone. Look at cultivars and or species that have the best characteristics for your environment. It is good to consider cultivars that are disease resistant, drought tolerant, shade tolerant, etc.

Most turfgrasses will need ample sunshine and consistent irrigation to perform. Adding fertilizer will help support a healthy stand over the growing season. In addition, checking the soil pH to make sure it is between 6.0 and 7.0 will make sure the correct nutrients are delivered to the plant.

What seed is right for you?

Kentucky Bluegrass – This is an option for a large population in the cool season parts of the United States.  Kentucky Bluegrass makes a beautiful lawn when it has the right conditions and care.  In general, KBG provides a dark, lush, and traffic-tolerant lawn. KBG requires a higher level of maintenance and more water than perennial ryegrass and turf type tall fescue.

  • Cold-season grass with excellent winter hardiness
  • Prefers sun, some varieties have shade tolerance
  • Northern US zone
  • Will go dormant if subjected to heat and drought conditions for a lengthy time
  • Moderate to high water and maintenance requirements
  • Lush, traffic-tolerant, aggressive repair

Turf Type Tall Fescue – Tall fescue is becoming more popular because of its ability to adapt to many climates. TTTF is known for its cold, drought, shade tolerance, and disease resistance.  Growing TTTF in the right zone will produce a stand that is drought tolerant and durable.

  • Performs well in both northern and southern transition regions
  • Tolerant of drought, cold, heat, and shade
  • Disease resistant
  • Bunch type grass, thus, mixing it with 10% KBG will help knit the stand together

Perennial Ryegrass – PRG is used throughout the United States.  It is most often used for overseeding landscapes and golf courses in the southern zone. PRG is also a strong permanent turf in the Northern US. PRG does well when summer temperatures are moderate, and winter temperatures are cool.

  • Fast germination
  • Used for permanent and temporary turf
  • Good cold tolerance
  • Heat and drought tolerance varies by variety
  • Some shade tolerance

Fine Fescues – Fine fescues have become more popular in low-maintenance areas and reclamation projects. When mixed with KBG or PRG, it will produce a stand that does well in challenging environments. Mixing Creeping Red Fescue, Sheeps Fescue, Hard fescue, and chewings fescue can help create a stand that is great in shade, requires low maintenance, and uses less water.

  • Low maintenance
  • Shade tolerant
  • Fast germ
  • Drought tolerant
  • Blends well with other species like PRG and KBG

Kelly Lynch
Pure Seed Regional Manager