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Choosing the Best Type of Grass for the Jacksonville, FL Area

by Kelly Richardson, All About Lawns Columnist

Growing healthy grass in the state of Florida poses several unique challenges that Northern states don't necessarily have to contend with. Climate, soil, and application issues can get a bit tricky. Here are some grasses that work best in Jacksonville, Florida.

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Jacksonville residents looking for the right type of grass to plant in their lawns should consider a variety of factors:

  • Climate. Your grass should be resistant to drought and tolerant of heavy rains and salt water.
  • Use. You should consider how much traffic your grass will see. If you're a homeowner with kids, choose a type of grass that accepts heavy foot or motorized traffic.
  • Maintenance. Do you have a great deal of time to spend on your lawn? If not, you'll want to choose a type of grass that doesn't require a lot of care.

What Types of Grass are Best?

  • Bermuda. Bermuda grass is the popular choice for golf courses, playing fields and public parks. But it is also a great type of grass for your lawn. Bermuda is drought-resistant, holds up under heavy use, and grows well in tropical climates.
  • Paspalum. For residents on the Jacksonville coast, paspalum is one of the better choices. It thrives on salt water and can even grow on ocean water with the right management practices. Recycled water is also a popular way to develop paspalum.
  • Bahia. This warm season grass has an excellent resistance to drought and insect attacks. Bahia roots extend to eight feet, which means it is a reliable type of grass in many areas of Florida. 
  • Zoysia. Also known as "Japanese lawn grass," Zoysia resists extreme drought and holds its color quite well throughout the year. As Zoysia is highly salt-tolerant, it is another useful type of grass for those on the coast.
  • Centipede. Centipede grass is a popular lawn type due to its low maintenance requirements. The only drawback to this type of grass is that it's not very tolerant to low temperatures--but that's not often a problem in Florida!

About the Author
Kelly Richardson has obsessive compulsive lawn disorder and is afflicted with the need to share his knowledge with the world. Kelly writes lawn columns for a variety of home and garden magazines and e-zines.

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