What Does Bahia Grass Look Like - Everything You Need to Know

Written by Ivy

Jan 28 2023

What Does Bahia Grass Look Like - Everything You Need to Know

Due to its exceptional resistance to heat, drought, and its capacity to flourish where other lawn grasses struggle, bahiagrass is highly prized. Only a small portion of the Southeast of the United States uses it for lawns. Bahiagrass grows here and creates a turf that is relatively hardy, slow-growing, and low-maintenance. When your lawn's objectives, location, and soil are compatible with Bahia's natural preferences, this tough grass might be a great option.

Bahiagrass Basics


In order to be used as a pasture grass in the Southeast, bahiagrass was introduced to the United States in 1914. This native of South America is still widely utilized in farming, conservation, and erosion control initiatives.2 Bahia is a warm-season grass, just like its name would imply. Late spring through the sweltering summer months are when it grows the fastest. This perennial grass survives season after season in the appropriate climate.

Even in the sandy soils typical of the Southeast, Bahiagrass is very drought-tolerant due to its naturally deep root system. Its natural texture is rougher than that of many local grasses, especially cool-season grasses prevalent in northern zones. Few other warm-season grasses match Bahia's drought resistance, despite Bermudagrass' higher drought resistance in sand. However, compared to Bermuda, bahiagrass is more tolerant of a small amount of shade. Additionally, it can tolerate ill-drained soils better.

Some Bahiagrass varieties have proven themselves for lawn use in the Southeast's hot and humid climate since it was first used as pasture grass. From Florida through the southern Coastal Plains to the Texas Gulf Coast, it is used as a lawn. These Bahiagrass varieties provide advantages other warm-season grasses do not for homeowners in this difficult turf zone.

Bahiagrass' fundamental strengths are built upon by Pennington Pensacola Bahiagrass Grass Seed. It performs well even in subpar soil conditions to create robust, dense, and drought-resistant lawns. Pensacola has better winter hardiness and better turf quality than common Bahia thanks to its deep, extensive root system, which also increases tolerance to heat and cold.

A wider variety, finer leaf texture, and a deeper, more appealing lawn color are all characteristics of Pennington Argentine Bahiagrass Grass Seed. Its deep roots, resistance to disease and drought, and extremely slow growth combine with minimal maintenance requirements.


On large lots without access to irrigation, bahiagrass is occasionally used. If this describes your lawn, be aware that bahia will enter a dormant state (turn brown) during prolonged periods without water. It will turn green once more and start growing once the rain stops.

When watering the lawn, keep an eye out for folded leaves, a change in color, and footprints that remain on the grass after you walk on it. It's probably time for a drink if you notice these things. Each time you activate the sprinklers, apply ½ to ¾ inch of water.

Pro Tip: The best time to water if you have an irrigation system is in the early morning, no later than 10 a.m.


Depending on your soil, you may need to fertilize a bahia lawn more or less. Before considering the installation of any lawn, make a plan to get a soil test so you can determine what kind of preparation is required. The amount of organic matter in the soil, the type of soil, whether or not you've previously recycled clippings (also known as mulched them into the lawn), and other factors will all affect the amount of fertilizer needed.

Depending on where you live in Florida, it is advised to apply 1-4 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet per year. For information on when you can apply, check your local regulations to see if there are any ordinances or dates for fertilizer blackouts.
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Dethatching and Aeration

Aeration is not required because bahiagrass is typically grown on sandy soils. Bahiagrass is also a grass that does not frequently produce a lot of thatch.


Bahia Grass Pests, and Diseases

Pests and diseases rarely affect bahian grass. The mole cricket, which tunnels through the soil and harms roots, poses the biggest pest threat. With the exception of dollar spot, which can leave spots strewn about the lawn that are several inches in diameter, very few diseases affect bahia grass lawns. Be sure to carefully read labels to ensure the product won't harm a bahia grass lawn. The weed and feed product Scotts® Bonus S Southern cannot be applied to bahia grass lawns.

How to Establish Bahiagrass

Sod or seed are both options for getting bahiagrass. Sod costs more on both the product and labor fronts while seed is less expensive overall. Most people find that using seed is more cost-effective when establishing grass in large areas. Sod produces the best results when properly cared for after planting if you have a smaller lawn and want a higher-quality appearance.

Almost any time of year is suitable for sod installation. You should plant seeds in North Florida and the northern regions in the spring or early summer if you intend to do so. In order to establish itself before growth slows down in the cooler months, the grass is given the most time possible to grow in. Choose a naturally rainy time to sow bahia if you don't have irrigation.

How Long Does Bahia Grass Take to Grow?

Depending on the soil conditions, bahia grass takes between 3 and 6 weeks to grow. Slow-growing bahia grass prefers warm soil and grows slowly. If the soil is warm enough for the grass to germinate, it can grow in as little as 3 weeks, but if the soil is colder, it can take 4 weeks for bahia grass to even start germination.

Is Bahia Grass Good for Lawns?

In hot and dry climates, bahia grass is excellent for lawns. Additionally, it thrives in subpar soil conditions. Because bahia grass has a deep root system, it can withstand droughts even in arid, hard soil like sand or clay. It grows best in full sunlight and less shade, and it has a rougher texture than other northern grasses. Bahia grass can tolerate poorly draining soil quite well as well.


How Long Does It Take Bahiagrass to Grow?

Bahia grass takes some time to establish and germinate, just like many warm-season varieties of grass. The normal germination time for bahiagrass is 28 days (4 weeks). It is vulnerable to weeds before germination because it takes time to establish. However, bahia grass has a long and dense root system, which allows it to grow in poor soil and handle dry spells very well.

During the summer, when it turns a vibrant green, bahia grass is active. The grass turns dark brown or tan when the colder months arrive because it goes dormant. Bahia grass can quickly recover, though, once environmental stressors disappear. If properly cared for, it will hibernate during the winter and then reawaken and begin to grow again during the summer.

How Do I Make My Bahia Grass Thicker?

The best way to maintain a thick bahia grass lawn is to overseed it to thicken the turf because the grass will eventually thin out. A few months before the hottest time of the year, in the spring, is the ideal time to overseed. If bahia grass is planted in the fall, it won't have enough time to establish itself and will dry out over the winter, which will prevent it from growing properly.

Additionally, Bahia grass will become thicker if you maintain a regular watering and fertilization routine.

Bahia Grass Bottom Line

Because it thrives in hot, dry climates, bahia grass is a fantastic option for lawns in the Southeast of the United States. Due to its deep root system, which allows it to thrive even in challenging soil conditions, it is a good choice for sandy soil conditions as well. Bahia grass requires some effort to establish, but once it is, it is relatively simple to maintain and care for. It looks great.