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What grass under trees??

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by David C., Mar 20, 2008.

  1. David C.

    David C. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 246

    Got a customer wanting me to seed some grass on his lawn

    Here's the skinny

    Burmuda survived last years drought and will recover out of dormancy

    Areas under trees are bear dirt---Sweet Gum, Pin Oak, Hickory---typically grass won't grow under these trees

    Any of you guys know what type grass I can either seed or sod out that will survive under these type shade trees??

    My area is Central Alabama---south of Birmingham---typical Summer temps---in the upper 90's and 100's a good bit of the Summer
  2. Mark Bogart

    Mark Bogart LawnSite Member
    Messages: 174

    How big are the trees? How much sunlight gets through the trees canopy?
  3. David C.

    David C. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 246

    6-12 inch diameter at the trunk base

    I believe enough sunlight gets through---its just that the tree roots have sucked all the ground nutrients from the soil---so that the grass has no nutrients to grow properly
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    When I was down in N.Cen. Florida a few months ago we noticed the greenest grass was under the large trees. We theorized that the canopy had protected then from the frost.

    Add some compost to the area that you want to seed under the trees. Because it is compost and not topsoil you will be able to go thick enough without suffocating tree roots.
  5. AUHort1990

    AUHort1990 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 137

    Probably will not be able to get any grass to grow. Zoysia might have a chance it the shade isn't to bad...but after a few years it will thin out.

    Might want to try Liriope or Ophiopogon as a grass like groundcover.
  6. Brown's LC & L

    Brown's LC & L LawnSite Member
    Messages: 30

    Ever try Creeping Red Fescue? It's supposed to do good in shaded areas. I planted some in a heavily shaded yard in the fall and so far so good.
  7. CALandscapes

    CALandscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 946

    St. Augustine should do pretty well.

    Ground cover would be your next best option (i.e. ardisia, asiatic jasmine, leriope, etc.)
  8. retrodog

    retrodog LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,429

    What about patriot bermuda? I heard that it favors shade.

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