Type of grass to overseed? Native plants?

Asked August 27, 2016, 5:17 PM EDT

Hi...we're in a new house in Virginia Beach (Lake Smith Terrace - arrived in April) and have a tall fescue lawn. The front yard is full sun (and now full of crabgrass) and the back yard is mottled shade (and looks pretty good). We would like to switch the front yard to a warm-season grass. In your opinion, what is the most "native" type of grass to use - one that will require the least maintenance? Can we switch to the new grass by overseeding? We are trying to accomplish a relatively nice lawn with a very minimum of chemicals. When we first moved in, McDonalds Garden Center tested the PH - we added lime and milorganite. We are also planning to reduce the size of the lawn by planting native grasses, flowers, plants - do you know where I can find a list of plants native to Virginia Beach? Thanks so much!

Virginia Beach Virginia

2 Responses

Warm season grasses are often used in Virginia Beach due to our longer growing season. Different varieties of grass are grown and maintained in different ways. Below you will find more specific information on these varieties as well as a list of other native plants you could use in your landscape.

Here is some information on establishing a new lawn - http://www.pubs.ext.vt.edu/426/426-718/426-718.html.

Here is some information on selecting a turfgrass - http://www.pubs.ext.vt.edu/426/426-719/426-719.html

Here is a maintenance calendar for warm season grasses - http://www.pubs.ext.vt.edu/430/430-522/430-522_pdf.pdf

Here is information on native plants for the Coastal Plain - http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural-heritage/document/cp-nat-plants.pdf

Thanks, Andrea... There are so many choices for grass - it's hard to decide. I have read elsewhere that centipede grass is also a good warm season although I didn't see it anywhere in the recommended turf list. What would be your own personal choice for a very low maintenance lawn, in full sun, gets little wear, in good soil? Thanks! Barb