Bermuda grass is the most common grass used on golf courses today. It forms a thick grassbed and it is very resistant to wear and tear. It grows low to the ground, meaning you'll have to mow less. Although some see Bermuda grass as a threat to lawns, Bermuda lawns are sought after by others. It was once only available as sod, but now many companies offer Bermuda seeds so you can grow it from scratch.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Bermuda grass seeds
- Soil pH testing kit
- Flatbed shovel
- Herbicide (optional)
- Sod-cutter (optional)
- Soil conditioner
- Handheld broadcast seeder (optional)
- Hose with a misting attachment
Determine if Bermuda grass is a good choice for your lawn. Bermuda grows well in very warm weather, but has difficulty growing in central and northern states. It should be planted in the late spring or early summer when the temperature is above 18.3 degrees Celsius for several weeks.
Look for Bermuda seeds that are hulled and coated. This means that the natural protective layer has been removed from the seed, which speeds up the germination process. The coating is a combination of fungicide and dye. Raw seeds are unhulled and may take months to sprout. You’ll need three pounds of coated seed for every 1000 square feet of lawn.
Dig up the existing lawn and weeds with a flat-bladed shovel, or by using an herbicide and then a sod-cutter to remove all of the roots. You can rent a sod-cutter from your local home and garden store.
Have the pH of your soil tested. Bermuda grows best in soil that has a pH of 6.5 to 7.0. You can use additives to adjust the pH of your soil when you till the lawn.
Rent a rototiller from your local home and garden store to break up the compacted soil. Use a rake to even out the soil once it’s been tilled up. Remove any hills or depressions in your lawn area so it is smooth.
Spread a starter fertiliser over the soil. You can also use compost to serve the same purpose.
Use the rototiller to blend together the fertiliser or compost with the soil. Then smooth out the surface of the soil with a rake.
Sow the seeds by hand or by using a handheld broadcast seeder. Distribute half the seeds in one direction. Sow the other half at a right angle to your first direction.
Lightly rake in the seeds so that they are covered by an eighth of an inch of soil and fertiliser. Pat down on the lawn with a flatbed shovel.
Spray water carefully over the new seed bed. Get full coverage but be careful not to disturb the soil. Water twice a day for the first ten to fourteen days until the lawn has sprouted.
As the lawn grows, decrease the frequency of the watering but increase the amount of water that you use. This way you’ll encourage deep root growth and fully establish your lawn.
Tips and warnings
- Fertilise your new lawn only if the growth is weak or yellow.
- Bermuda grass lawns can obtain full coverage in just a year.