Sow bahia grass seeds using a broadcast seeder or throwing them by hand. Apply 1 pound of seed evenly over 100 square feet of lawn. For over-seeding, apply 1/2 pound of seed per 100 square feet, applying only to bare or thin spots. Rake the soil again, covering the seeds with a fine layer of soil.
Test the soil for the lawn area to determine required nutrients.
Rake the area smooth. Create a gentle slope away from the house. A level yard or a slope towards the house encourages water to stand or directs it toward the house’s foundations.
Apply a high-nitrogen lawn fertilizer such as 16-4-8 once the seeds sprout and again in midsummer. Apply 8 ounces of fast-release fertilizer or 16 ounces of slow-release nitrogen fertilizer per 1,000 square feet of lawn. Water the fertilizer in thoroughly to avoid burning the new grass.
Amend the soil as recommended by your soil test, adding lime, sulfur, potassium or phosphorus, if recommended, and bringing the soil pH to between 5.5 and 6.5. Wait to apply any recommended nitrogen after seeds sprout.
Bahia grass (Paspalum notatum) is a low-growing perennial grass suitable for planting on sandy soils, shaded lawns or high-traffic areas. Its deep roots make it more resistant to drought and able to withstand summer heat, once established. Bahia grass grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 11. Because it’s a warm-season grass, plant bahia grass seeds during the spring or summer for the best germination rates.
Remove existing grasses and weeds, if you’re planting a new lawn. Till the soil, breaking up large clumps and removing rocks and other debris. If you’re over-seeding with bahia grass seed, mow the existing grass closely and pull all weeds.
If you live in the challenging geographical area where Bahiagrass excels, this resilient lawn option may provide the advantage you need. At Pennington, we work to bring you the finest grass seed and lawn care products possible. We’re here to help you learn, grow and enjoy an attractive, healthy lawn — wherever you live.
Seeding and Overseeding Thin Lawns
As a warm-season grass, Bahia operates on a different timetable than northern grasses for month-by-month lawn tasks. But its limited range puts it on a different schedule than many southern grasses as well. Seeding is best done in spring as growth accelerates. Overseed existing thin Bahiagrass lawns at the same time. However, the warm, moderate winters in Bahia’s limited area offer some flexibility. Fall seedings in
Other Bahia Characteristics to Consider
SEPTEMBER THROUGH NOVEMBER
Seed or overseed your lawn with Pennington Pensacola Bahiagrass Grass Seed or Pennington Argentine Bahiagrass Grass Seed in late spring and early summer, before summer heat arrives. Bahiagrass germinates best once soil temperatures stay consistently in the 65°F to 70°F range.
Pennington Argentine Bahiagrass Grass Seed has a broader range, finer leaf texture and darker, more attractive lawn color. Its deep roots and drought and disease tolerance combine with very low growth and low maintenance needs.
Bahiagrass forms tall, unsightly seed heads throughout the spring, summer, and fall months that many find objectionable. This necessitates regular mowing to keep the stalks from becoming too tall. The seed stems are tough and can wear out mower blades, requiring frequent sharpening. Bahiagrass has few insect problems, but it is susceptible to mole crickets. It does not have good tolerance for shade, traffic, or saltwater. Bahiagrass grows in an open growth habit, which can result in weed encroachment into sparse areas. It has a coarse leaf texture and provides less cushioning for recreational activities than some other species. Bahiagrass does best in full sun.
A soil test should be done to determine soil pH and what nutrients are available to the lawn. The local Extension office has instructions and supplies for taking soil samples and submitting them to the Extension Soil Testing Laboratory for analysis. Refer to http://soilslab.ifas.ufl.edu/ESTL%20Home.asp for more information on obtaining and submitting a soil sample. In particular, phosphorus levels are best determined by soil testing. Since some Florida soils are high in phosphorus, it may not always be necessary to always add phosphorus to a lawn once it is established.
Note: Many popular “weed-n-feed” fertilizers for home lawns contain the herbicide atrazine or metsulfuron. Both of these herbicides will damage bahiagrass; therefore, they are not recommended for use on this grass.
Bahiagrass can be established as sod or seed. Advantages of planting from sod are rapid establishment of the lawn and fewer opportunities for weeds to invade. The primary disadvantages of this method are the expense and labor required to lay the sod. In contrast, seeding is less expensive and requires less labor than sodding, but bahiagrass seed germinates slowly and takes longer to form a uniform turf cover. Water, either from rainfall or from irrigation, helps promote faster germination of bahiagrass seed and improves the odds of successful establishment. Scarified seed, which has been chemically treated to enable faster germination, should be used when available.
Note that iron is not a substitute for nitrogen, which provides the building blocks for turfgrass growth and is required for turf health. While both iron and nitrogen deficiencies result in turfgrass yellowing, they are distinctly different deficiencies in plants. Applying iron does not cure yellowing due to nitrogen deficiency, and iron fertilizer is not a substitute for nitrogen fertilizer. Foliar iron fertilizers, such as iron sulfate or chelated iron solutions, help cure iron deficiencies, and nitrogen fertilizers applied according to BMPs cure nitrogen deficiencies.