The 13 Best Grass Types for Your Lawn

Are you overwhelmed with the large selection of grass seeds when you walk into your garden center? Choosing the right type of grass for your lawn can be tricky. In this article, gardening expert Jill Drago will break down 13 types of grass for your lawn and help you decide which might be best for you.

A lush green lawn glistens under the radiant sunlight, creating a serene and inviting atmosphere. The blades of grass sway gently, promising a relaxing outdoor experience.


Growing the perfect lawn can be a tricky business! There is much to consider, such as where you live, how you plan on using your grass, and how much sunlight it will get. 

One of the number one reasons homeowners have difficulty growing a successful lawn is because they are just choosing the wrong species for their space. More often than not, it is beneficial to plant a seed mix. These mixes typically have a few types of seeds within them. If you prefer a non-traditional lawn, check out our list of low-maintenance alternatives.

In this article, I will list 13 of the best grass types for your lawn. You will also find maintenance tips and other helpful tidbits to make growing your best lawn easier. 

Bermuda Grass

A close-up reveals the beauty of Bermuda grass, with its vibrant green color and a hint of moisture glistening on its blades. Each blade stands tall and proud, showcasing the resilience of this grass variety.
Due to its warm-season nature, this species doesn’t fare well in cold winters.
botanical-name botanical name Cynodon dactylon
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun
height height 4-12 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 5-10

Bermuda grass is a low-maintenance type of turf. This is a great variety to grow if you live in the Southern part of the United States. If you are very active on your lawn and do not want to spend all your free time maintaining it, this is a good option for you. 

Bermuda grass is a warm-season species, which means it tolerates summer heat and humidity but is not hardy in cold winter temperatures. It spreads via rhizomes and stolons, making it an aggressive grower. It is listed as a noxious weed in Utah and Arkansas. This can be tricky to maintain and keep in control. 

Seed or overseed with Bermuda grass in late spring or early summer when your soil temperatures are about 65 to 70 degrees. When mowing, keep it at a length of 1 to 1 ½ inches. Aerating and dethatching are essential with this turf type. Because it’s an aggressive grower, it will create a large amount of thatch, which should be removed for the best results. 

Buffalo Grass

Buffalo grass, with its distinctive broad leaves, graces the scene. The leaves are a rich green hue and bear a slightly wavy texture, adding character to this hardy and native grass species.
Consider planting buffalo grass for erosion control in less-used lawn sections.
common-name common name Bouteloua dactyloides
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun
height height 4-8 inches 
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 4-8

Buffalo grass may not be the first type that comes to mind, but it has a purpose in some lawns. This variety is heat-loving and low maintenance, requiring little water or fertilizer. It is native to North America and grows nicely without mowing. 

Buffalo grass is a warm-season grass that will turn brown and dormant in the wintertime. The blades will be greyish-green during the spring and summer months. If you wish to grow buffalo grass, it is best done by sod rather than seed, as it is tricky to establish. 

The downside is that it does not tolerate high traffic. But if you have an area you don’t use much, buffalo grass could be the perfect option. If you require erosion control, you can also plant it for that purpose. 

Chewings Fescue 

Chewings Fescue basks in the warm sunlight, illuminating its fine, emerald-green blades. This grass variety appears soft and delicate, yet it thrives under the gentle caress of the sun's rays.
While fertilization can enhance lushness, it’s not necessary for this hardy variety.
botanical-name botanical name Festuca rubra ssp. commutata
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to shade
height height 12-24 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones Zone 3-7

Earning its reputation as a low-maintenance grass, chewings fescue has become a very popular addition to low-maintenance and shade-loving seed mixes

Chewings fescue is a fine fescue with nice narrow blades that grow in clumps or bunches. This makes it slow to spread, but it will establish itself nicely over time. 

When mowing your chewings fescue, aim for a height of two to four inches. Because chewings fescue is drought tolerant, you do not need to worry too much about irrigating. If you are seeking a lush green lawn, by all means, fertilize on a nice tight schedule. Chewings fescue does not require fertilizer to grow happily in your yard. 

Creeping Bentgrass

Under the golden sunlight, Creeping Bentgrass displays its fine texture and vibrant green color. Its blades sprawl gracefully, creating a lush carpet.
Its aggressive growth makes this type an adaptable choice for various garden areas.
botanical-name botanical name Agrostis stolonifera
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade 
height height 2-7 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 3-6

If you want your lawn to look like a golf course, creeping bentgrass is your turf! Now, don’t get too excited. This is a very high-maintenance lawn and should only be attempted by experienced lawn growers with lots of extra time on their hands. 

Creeping bentgrass is a cool-season grass. Spreading by stolons, it is an aggressive grower known to make its way into flower beds.  

This type can tolerate a low mowing height if you seek a carpet-style lawn. It’s high maintenance, requiring a lot of water and fertilizer. Keep your creeping bentgrass to about one inch high. Otherwise, it loses its carpet-like luster. 

Creeping Red Fescue 

A close-up of Creeping Red Fescue showcases its unique plumes. These slender, rust-colored plumes sway gently in the breeze, adding an elegant touch to the landscape.
While this grass can endure occasional drought, prolonged heat isn’t its friend.
botanical-name botanical name Festuca rubra
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade 
height height 6-12 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 1-7

Creeping red fescue is commonly found in seed blends due to its golf course appearance and its shade tolerance. 

Creeping red fescue spreads via rhizomes and will create a nice uniform surface without spreading too aggressively.  Even though it’s tolerant of occasional drought, it does not like extended periods of heat. 

As you will notice, like most fescues, creeping red fescue is very low maintenance. Tolerant of heat, drought, and shade, this variety could not be simpler to care for. To help keep weeds at bay, mow your creeping red fescue lawn from 2-4 inches in height. 

Hard Fescue

Amidst the brown soil, Hardy Fescue thrives, boasting slender leaves that appear almost thread-like. These leaves give the grass a delicate and wispy appearance, yet it thrives in challenging conditions.
Opt for hard fescue if low-maintenance lawns are your preference.
botanical-name botanical name Festuca ovina
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade 
height height 1-2 feet
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 4-8

Hard fescue is a fine fescue. This type is excellent for shady lawns but also performs very nicely in sunny yards. If you live in a coastal region, hard fescue will work nicely due to its salt tolerance. 

Fine fescues are different from tall fescues in appearance. They have finer, softer leaves than the hard fescues, making them a good choice for lawn growers who desire that soft, uniform lawn. 

This is a great grass type if you are not into lawn maintenance. Hard fescue is heat and drought-tolerant. It also does not require much fertilizer. Mow your tall fescue lawns at 3-4 inches high. This may be a bit longer than you are used to, but it will look healthy with minimal effort. 

Kentucky Bluegrass

A close-up of Kentucky Bluegrass, revealing its dense and velvety texture. The deep green blades of grass exude a sense of luxury, perfect for well-manicured lawns.
Kentucky bluegrass yields a uniform, attractive lawn thanks to its rhizome-driven sod formation.
botanical-name botanical name Poa pratensis
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade 
height height 4 inches to 3 feet
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 3-7

Kentucky bluegrass is among the most popular types homeowners select for their lawns. It is soft to walk on and great for playing. KBG is cold hardy, making it a great choice for Northern regions. 

Kentucky bluegrass creates a very lovely uniform lawn. KBG spreads into sod by rhizomes, making it resilient to damage. It’s slower to germinate than other cool-season grasses, but the deep emerald, nearly blue blades are worth the wait. 

If you plant KBG, be ready to fertilize! There are many options for lawn fertilizer. Select what is best for you, your conditions, and your lawn use needs. Mow the lawn to a 2 to 2 ½ inch height for best results. 

Perennial Ryegrass

A wide expanse of Perennial Ryegrass leaves forms a vibrant carpet. These leaves are slender, bright green, and densely packed, creating a lush and inviting setting.
Unlike annual ryegrass, perennial ryegrass returns each year and grows well in the Pacific Northwest.
botanical-name botanical name Lolium perenne
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade
height height 2-6 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 5-7

Perennial ryegrass is sort of the band-aid to all of your lawn needs. It is heat and cold-tolerant, germinates quickly, and keeps turf green. This turf type is excellent if you are outside a lot. It holds up very well to a lot of foot traffic.

You may have encountered annual ryegrass, which is excellent for quickly greening up your lawn. The perennial version does the same thing but will return year after year. This is an excellent type for those in the Pacific Northwest. 

Perennial ryegrass is a clump-former that spreads by rhizomes. This can make your lawn look a bit on the patchy side, but it blends nicely with other grasses. It’s a bit high maintenance and requires a lot of water and a good fertilization schedule.  Keep it mowed to about 1 or 1 ½ inches. 

Seashore Paspalum

Seashore Paspalum showcases its unique grass blades. They appear slender and slightly curled, adapting well to garden environments and lending a distinctive charm.
Apply all-purpose lawn fertilizer twice annually to keep seashore paspalum thriving.
botanical-name botanical name Paspalum vaginatum
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade
height height Up to 20 inches
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 8-11

Seashore paspalum is a low-growing turf that is excellent for warm climates. Grow this grass in an area that gets full sun or dappled shade. Too much shade can cause it to become leggy and ultimately fail. 

This type has greenish-blue leaf blades. Seashore paspalum is spread by underground rhizomes, quickly establishing itself in your yard.  

Seashore paspalum is tolerant of wet soils but can also tolerate some drought. It is helpful to water seashore paspalum after you mow your lawn to give the plants a hand at recovering. Use an all-purpose lawn fertilizer twice a year on seashore paspalum.  

St. Augustine Grass 

A close-up of St. Augustine Grasses reveals their straight, slender, emerald-green leaves, providing a cool and inviting atmosphere to outdoor spaces.
This variety spreads less aggressively than its counterparts.
botanical-name botanical name Stenotaphrum secundatum 
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade
height height 6-12 inches 
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 7-12

St. Augustine grass might be the best choice for a lawn if you live in the south in a coastal region. It’s often called buffalo grass but is actually a different variety. 

St. Augustine grass is salt-tolerant. The blades of this grass are coarse when compared to other warm-season grasses. However, the upside to this grass is that it is easier to control its spreading than it is with other warm-season grasses. 

The perfect mowing height for St. Augustine grass is between two and four inches. Fertilize your St. Augustine lawn every 6-8 weeks with your choice of lawn fertilizer. 

Tall Fescue

Bathed in the sun's warm glow, Tall Fescue grass stands tall and robust. Its emerald-green blades exhibit a sturdy and dependable quality, making it a reliable choice for lawns.
Tall fescue grows in clumps and forms tillers, upright shoots originating from the plant crown.
botanical-name botanical name Festuca arundinacea
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade 
height height 4-12 inches 
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 3-8

If you have a shady yard, you know it can be tricky to maintain a turf-type lawn. Fescues are the most tolerant of shade out of any turf. 

Tall fescue is a clump-forming grass sometimes called “bunch grass.” This grass will produce rhizomes, but it spreads a bit differently. Tall fescue produces tillers, upright shoots that grow from the existing plant crown with a clumping growth habit. 

Another benefit to growing tall fescue is that it does not require a lot of fertilization to maintain its appearance. Tall fescue should be overseeded in the spring or fall to maintain an attractive-looking lawn.

White Clover

White clovers, with their delicate white flowers, interspersed with the grass. Their tiny leaves add a touch of elegance and diversity to the green landscape.
Besides attracting bees and pollinators, this lawn alternative offers the added benefit of nitrogen fixation.
botanical-name botanical name Trifolium repens
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun to partial shade
height height 2-6 inches 
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 3-10

White clover is not technically a type of grass, but it is gaining popularity as a lawn replacement, and for good reason. Not only does clover attract bees and pollinators, but it also works with microorganisms to fix nitrogen and grows very nicely in many different lawns.

Clover produces deep green mats of foliage and white or purple flowers. If you have kids, you will want to think hard about planting white clover due to the amount of bees it can attract. However, you can mow it regularly to prevent flowering. Microclover is another option because it grows nicely and stays more compact. 

White clover is native to Europe but has naturalized throughout the United States since colonial times. It does not require much maintenance. It does not need any fertilizer but grows best in moist soil. Mow your white clover just as you would mow the rest of your lawn. Most likely, the mower will remove only the flowers and leave behind the lush foliage. 

Zoysia Grass

Zoysia Grass features leaves that exude a unique charm. They are spiky, with a vibrant green color, and appear to have slightly coarse texture, making them ideal for both ornamental and practical use.
The ability to endure extreme temperatures makes this grass an excellent addition to your grass seed mix.
botanical-name botanical name Zoysia spp. 
sun-requirements sun requirements Full sun
height height 4-6 inches tall
hardiness-zones hardiness zones 5-10

Zoysia grass is well-loved in southern climates because it is tough and stands up well against heat, foot traffic, and drought. Zoysia grass is a great choice if you live in a transitional zone where you experience very warm weather and freezing winter temperatures. This grass is tolerant of heat and cold, making it perfect for your grass seed mix. 

Zoysia is a warm-season grass. It spreads both by rhizomes and stolons and can get quite aggressive. These seeds are best sown in late spring or early summer. The narrow leaves of zoysia grass are bright green and have pointed tips. As with other warm-season grasses, zoysia grass will turn straw brown in the winter. 

Aside from maintaining the spreading of your zoysia grass, your lawn will be very low maintenance, requiring little water or fertilizer.  Zoysia grass should be mowed to 1 or 1 ½ inches high. 

Final Thoughts

These 13 grass types are common and easy to find at your local garden center. When you have decided which grass you think might be best for your yard, head out to the store and look for a grass blend with a few seed types that you know will work well for your area and the type of lawn you wish to grow.

Get ready to water these little grass babies until they are a few inches tall, at which point you can begin to mow! Patience is key when perfecting your lawn. If turf isn’t worth the hassle, consider naturally low-growing ground covers. Either way, give yourself some grace. Your perfect lawn is right around the corner!