Planting Coastal Bermudagrass

Overview

Coastal bermudagrass is a hardy, drought-tolerant grass that grows well in warm, southern climates. It loves full sun and does not grow well in shaded areas. It can be used for lawns or for pastures and makes excellent hay for livestock. Once established, coastal bermudagrass grows quickly, crowds out other vegetation and can be very difficult to remove. The easiest method of planting coastal bermudagrass is by plugs (small chunks of sod, generally 12 by 12 inches or smaller) or by sprigs, which are individual stalks of bermudagrass which root quickly when planted. Coastal bermudagrass seeds are not currently available.

Step 1

Water the area to be planted with coastal bermudagrass in order to encourage the growth of the current vegetation.

Step 2

Spray the area with a broad-spectrum herbicide 7 days after watering. Do no spray if there are high winds, and do not spray if rain is forecast within the next 24 hours.

Step 3

Rake off all dead vegetation 7 days after spraying with the broad-spectrum herbicide.

Step 4

Spread 2 inches of organic manure on the soil and then Rototill the ground to a depth of 8 inches, mixing the organic matter into the soil.

Step 5

Rake the area with your hard steel rake to remove any vegetative matter that was turned up by the rototiller and any stones or other debris. Use your rake to level the area as well.

Step 6

Water the area thoroughly, putting 1 to 2 inches of water into the soil.

Step 7

Begin planting your coastal bermudagrass 12 hours after thoroughly watering the area. If planting plugs, simply place plugs on top of the soil approximately 18 inches apart and press lightly on each plug with your foot in order to insure that it comes into full contact with the soil below. If planting sprigs, use a small spade to dig a hole as deep as the sprig is tall. Place the sprig into the hole with only the tip of the sprig above ground level, and fill in with soil. Sprigs should be planted 8 inches apart for a lawn and 2 feet apart for pasture.

Step 8

Water the area until the ground is damp but not soggy. Keep the ground damp but not soggy for the next 21 days. This can mean watering more than once a day if the temperatures are high or if there are drying winds. At the end of 21 days you should see vigorous growth beginning. Your plugs or sprigs will soon begin spreading out until they connect with each other, quickly forming a dense carpet of coastal bermudagrass.

Things You'll Need

  • Coastal bermudagrass plugs or sprigs
  • Broad-spectrum herbicide
  • Hard steel rake
  • Organic manure
  • Rototiller
  • Spade

References

  • USDA Agricultural Research Service: Coastal Bermudagrass
  • Mississippi State University Extension: Bermudagrass
Keywords: planting coastal bermudagrass, grass plugs, pasture grass

About this Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for TV, everything from SMURFS to SPIDER-MAN.