A wide variety of warm season grasses are found in Florida's warm-temperate and sub-tropical climate. Native to the tropics, warm season grasses form a dense, green turfgrass that thickens with age and thrives in hot, humid environments. During winter months, these grasses turn brown as they become dormant until spring.
St. Augustine lawn grass is a course-textured, warm-season lawn grass found throughout the inland and coastal regions of Florida. It has a poor tolerance for cold temperatures or high levels of foot traffic. St. Augustine grass requires weekly watering for best color and optimal health, but can survive periods of prolonged drought conditions. Preferring direct sunlight but moderately shade tolerant, St. Augustine grass will progressively thin out as sunlight is diminished.
Kikuyu lawn grass is a coarse-textured, light-green, warm season grass that is often mistaken for St. Augustine grass. Kikuyu grass is highly resistant to heavy foot traffic, shady lawn conditions and periods of prolonged drought. In ideal conditions, Kikuyu grass can grow 1 inch per day. This extremely vigorous growth is why Kikuyu grass is considered a grass-like weed in some regions. When grown as a turfgrass, Kikuyu grass requires very little maintenance except weekly mowing.
Carpet grass is a coarse-textured, perennial, warm-season turfgrass that thrives in wet, sandy, low pH topsoil environments. This lawn grass has the ability to grow in otherwise low fertility soils, making it a popular choice for low maintenance areas where establishment is more important than aesthetic quality. Native to tropical climates, carpet grass is grown on roadsides, and in fields, pastures and home lawns. Due to a shallow root system, carpet grass is unable to survive prolonged periods of drought.
Seashore paspalum grass is salt-water tolerant, and frequently grows in topical and subtropical coastal regions of North and South America. This turfgrass produces a dense, dark green foliage in infertile soil environments. Having a deep, extensive root system allows seashore paspalum to be drought and traffic tolerant. Unlike other warm-season grasses, this grass is typically established by using sprigs or sod.