Dormant Bermudagrass

Lawn Care

What are these tan areas in my lawn?  

Are you seeing tan areas in your fescue lawn this winter? If so, you have begun to witness dormant Bermudagrass. Bermudagrass is a warm-season grass that goes dormant (turns tan) over the winter months. While Fescue grass is typically green year-round but may be discolored or yellow in harsh, wet winter months. When winter temperatures consistently fall below 50 degrees, fescue will go dormant because weather conditions aren’t ideal for development and growth. 

Once temperatures rise in the spring, your lawn will begin to green-up. Bermudagrass during the summer can be very invasive, quickly spreading laterally through Rhizomes and Stolons. It has excellent heat and drought tolerance but cannot tolerate shade.  Since our winters are cool and summers are hot, both cool season grasses (Fescue) and warm season grasses (Bermudagrass) can thrive. It is completely normal to have a mixed strand of more than one type of grass. 

How to get rid of Bermudagrass?  

This grass can be very difficult to control. Areas where Bermudagrass is present will have to be sprayed with a nonselective herbicide such as glyphosate. Several applications are recommended in July and August for the best results. This will help with the control of the Bermudagrass, but the desired turf grass will have to be re-established with aeration and seeding in the fall. Depending on the amount of Bermudagrass, a partial or full renovation may be necessary.  

Virginia Green offers a Bermudagrass Suppression service for our customers. Please contact us to discuss the best course of action for your yard!