Type of grass

Asked October 19, 2015, 3:29 PM EDT

What type of grass would you recommend to grow if you have a Maple Tree directly in the middle of your lawn? My husband likes Fescue, but it doesn't do very well in the summer. I live in Norfolk, Va. Thank you for your time. K. Bean

Norfolk Virginia

1 Response

While tall Fescue can tolerate some shade, as with any turf grass, it performs best in full sun. Norfolk's hot, humid summers are not conducive to growing cool season grasses. Virginia Cooperative Extension encourages planting warm season lawns throughout Hampton Roads.

Warm season grasses include St. Augustine grass, Centipede grass, Bermuda grass, and Zoysia grass. Of these, St. Augustine is the most shade tolerant. This being said, no grass will perform well in deep shade. If your tree is large and casts a significant shadow, you may opt to plant a shade tolerant ground cover instead of grass (e.g., pachysandra, liriope). You may also wish to enlist the services of a qualified arborist to strategically thin the tree's canopy, permitting greater light penetration, and better air circulation.