Best Lawn Grass for the Denver Area
Denver has the plains on one side and the Rockies on the other, placing the city in a transition between two climate zones. For the most part this doesn’t make much of a difference, since both of the zones use cool season grasses. However, there are a few details that can change depending on where a property is located in the Denver area.
Good old Kentucky bluegrass is the most popular cool season grass in the country, and Denver is no exception. In fact, it’s the predominant lawn grass throughout Colorado. Originally from Europe, bluegrass produces a lush, finely textured turf that feels great under bare feet. The one big issue with bluegrass is that it’s susceptible to leaf spot. However, this can be easily combated by using a blend of three different cultivators so you get a lawn with the strengths of all of them.
There are two types of ryegrasses: perennial and annual. Perennial ryegrass will hibernate and come back in the spring, so it’s the standard for most lawns. Annual ryegrass, however, is a great way to fill in patches and combat weeds because it grows quickly and in tight clumps. With both varieties you can expect a tough turf that can deal with a lot of traffic. The grass has a shiny green color, a fine texture, and a dense sod. It also has a high insect and disease resistance which is why it’s a common choice for athletic fields or high impact lawns.
Fescues can be sorted into tall fescues, which have broad leaves, and fine fescues, which have finer, shorter leaves. Within fine fescues there are several varieties, including creeping red, chewings, hard, and sheep. Fescues are one area where the location within Denver is important. Lawns that are closer to the mountains should use hardier fine fescues, such as creeping red, while lawns closer to the plains grow tall fescues well. All of them have good drought tolerance and good shade tolerance.
For most lawns, the best bet is to get a mix of seeds. Many lawn mixes will have a core of Kentucky bluegrass varieties, with a healthy dose of ryegrasses and fescues mixed in. This lets the turf of a lawn build of the strengths of all the grass varieties.
For lawns on the east side of Denver, buffalo grass may be a good option. Buffalo grass is native to the US, and originated from the Great Plains. It’s actually a warm season grass, and is one of the most cold tolerant warm season grasses out there. It has a fine texture, and is extremely low maintenance. This makes it a perfect choice for lawns that are looking for that native, natural style.