How long does it take for Bermuda Grass to Spread its Growth Rate?
Bermuda grass is the favorite grass for all those inhabiting warm weather areas. It’s popular and can be planted using seeds, sprigs, or sod. What makes it more preferred is that it’s fairly low maintenance once the roots are established, and can spread over a large area. So let’s check out How long does it take for Bermuda grass to spread.
The seeds of the Bermuda grass take about 7 days to germinate after they’re sown. It further takes about 6 weeks for the grass to spread and form a fully lush lawn.
How long does it take for Bermuda Grass to Spread its Growth Rate?
The spread is dependent on many factors, like:
The germination time for the Bermuda grass depends heavily on the climate of the soil it’s planted in. Bermuda grass is a warm-weather lover and does best when planted in late spring or early summer. It doesn’t do well when planted in a cold, dry soil climate. The seeds need to be kept moist until germinated and therefore, require heavy precaution when planted in any other season.
Hulled or unhulled seeds can be used to plant Bermuda grass. It’s best to use hulled seeds while planting in summer or spring. The seed germination can be anywhere from 5-10 days and need plenty of water in the early days, so it’s essential to keep the soil moist.
If planting in the fall, it’s best to use unhulled seeds since they’re still safe in their hulls and can tolerate the dry and cold temperature. However, Bermuda grass lays dormant in the cold season, so the seeds will only start germinating in the spring.
Bermuda grass seeds need exposure to sunlight and moisture to germinate and grow completely. The seeds reach their full potential when sown at a warm temperature in an area that gets plenty of sunlight for a larger part of the day.
When fully grown, Bermuda grass can tolerate a lack of water and sunlight. However, young seeds need to remain moist to germinate fully. They require a constant supply of water for most of the day. However, it’s important to ensure that the water needs to be running, not stagnant, or the seeds will be drowned. Once the germination is complete, the water supply can be cut back as per the requirement.
While the grass needs to be fertilized regularly, using fertilizers or weed killers on young seeds can hamper their growth and increase the germination time. This requires waiting for at least 4 weeks after the seeds sprout.
Here are 7 ways to boost the growth of the Bermuda grass and have a fully established lawn in less time.
Choose the Right Variety
The variety of the Bermuda grass depends on the variety of soil and climatic conditions. Depending on the pH of the soil, exposure to the sun, type of soil, water supply, weather conditions, and seed type, you can determine the best quality Bermuda grass seed well-suited to these factors. When all the required conditions are met, the well-suited seed grows and spreads quickly into a dense lawn in a short period. The best way to identify if the seed type isn’t suitable for the soil is when thin, bare spots start to appear and weeds start to sprout all over. The leaf blades can also be yellow instead of green if grown in ill-suited weather or soil conditions.
Plant it in the Spring
The right time to plant Bermuda grass seeds is in the spring when there’s moisture and warmth in the weather. Proper growth of the grass depends highly on planting it at the right time. Planting it during the spring ensures fast growth and better grass health. It’s not recommended to plant the seeds during dry and cold temperatures because the lack of moisture can delay germination and might even destroy the seed. The grass spreads the fastest when established via seeds, not sodding or sprigging. The best way to plant the seeds is to rake them into the soil and water the ground regularly.
Water the Lawn
Bermuda grass requires a lot of water in the initial period of growth. Water supports root establishment and with proper rooting, the grass grows and spreads faster, leaving you an attractive, green, and lush lawn.
During the initial growth period, the seeds require watering at least 2 times a day. When the grass grows to about an inch in length, the watering frequency can be reduced to once per day. It’s important to put in only as much water as the soil can soak up to avoid degrading the lawn’s soil quality. Overwatering can also turn the color from lush green to pale yellow and increase the risk of diseases.
Mow the Lawn Regularly
To promote lateral growth so the grass could spread over a large area is to keep a check on its vertical growth. The best way to promote lateral growth is to mow the lawn regularly after the grass grows to about 2 inches in length. This way, the roots will be well established and will grow healthily. The frequency of mowing could be twice per week, and no more than one-third of the leaf blades should be removed.
Use the Right Fertilizer
Bermuda grass needs an adequate supply of nitrogen to absorb via the roots and convert them into energy to grow. By supplying nitrogen through various fertilizers, the grass grows faster and spreads to a larger area. This fertilization is best done during the peak growing season. However, it’s recommended to stop fertilizing at the beginning of winter, the dormant period as the grass is unable to soak in the nutrients and the natural growth stops by then. Here is a list of the best fertilizers based on the quality of soil, weather condition, and the type of Bermuda grass. (Hyperlink the last sentence to the published article about fertilizers)
Amend the Soil
If the grass isn’t growing to its adequate length, it could be a problem with the soil. The soil could be ill-suited for the grass. Bermuda grass grows the fastest when planted in soil that’s of good quality, drains well, and keeps the seed moist. If the soil in your area is inadequate, you can try using a different variety of seeds or artificially introduce suitable conditions for the grass to grow to its full potential.
Provide Adequate Sunlight
Adequate sunlight is one of the most important factors that support the growth of Bermuda grass. If planted in a shade-covered lawn, its growth would be less and the color pale. Therefore, it’s best planted during the summer or spring and in an area that is exposed to the sun for a large part of the day.
Bermuda grass is a rampant spreader and can spread as far away as it’s allowed to. This quality makes the grass a great option for filling in bare spots on the lawn. It forms a thick, dense turd that’s eye-catching and attractive.
To know a detailed comparison between Bermuda Grass and tall fescue Grass, click here.
While this makes it a preferred turfgrass, this exponential growth can make it a nightmare as a weed. If left unchecked, it can quickly spread into areas like driveways and gardens. Therefore, its growth needs to be looked out for.