C. dactylon, commonly known as Bermuda grass, is widely distributed as forage and turf. Sports fields, parks, lawns, and golf courses in over 100 countries including Austrailia, Africa, South America, and the United States all employ Bermuda grass as the turf of choice. Soil health, air temperature, soil temperature, and pest and disease control all play a part in the healthy growth of this turfgrass.
All plants, including Texas Bermuda grass, grow best when planted in fertile soil. Healthy, rich soil is abundant in nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Most of the time healthy soil can be found in areas where other plants have been grown and then completed their life cycle, depositing their dead organic matter, like dead leaves, back into the soil. If you plan to sow Bermuda grass in an area that is new to gardening or planting or in a location where the soil is clay, fertilize the soil at the time of sowing. A fertilizer like Lady Bug 8-2-4 that is rich in nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium will give the soil the boost it needs. Treat the soil according to label directions.
Texas Bermuda grass is a warm-season perennial species that grows best under extended periods of high temperatures and moderate to high rainfall. Air temperatures below 30 degrees F can kill the leaves and stems of Texas Bermuda grass; this turf species grows best when planted in areas where the average daily temperatures are above 75 degrees F. Soil temperature is also important to the growth and development of Bermuda grass. Soil temperatures above 65 degrees F are required for root development, with optimum soil temperature for root growth hovering around 80 degrees F.
Pest and Disease Tips
There are several varieties of Texas Bermuda grass, including Tifgreen, Texturf, and Tifway, and they are all prone to Bermuda grass mites and mealybugs. These pests cause damage by sucking juices from the stems of the plant, stunting its normal growth. Apply a pesticide at the first sign of these bugs to prevent extensive damage. Treat the grass according to label directions. Texas Bermuda grass is also prone to pythium, a fungus that affects the leaves and crowns of plants. If left untreated, pythium fungus can kill Texas Bermuda grass. Treat this fungus at the first sign with a fungicide. Follow label directions to ensure appropriate application.