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How to Grow a Couch Grass Lawn

Couch grass is a type of warm-weather evergreen grass that thrives in dry and warm climates. This grass requires little maintenance and grows to spread quickly, covering an area in a thick, green blanket. Couch grass will not survive in shady areas, in poorly drained soils or areas where there is frost. It requires at least four hours of direct sunlight and goes dormant in the cold winter months. There are many types of couch grasses, among which Casa Blanca, Santa Ana and American Couch are popular with gardeners.

Strip the planting site in late spring or early summer to remove any vegetation, rocks, weeds and plant debris. Collect these in a wheelbarrow to dispose off. Make sure the site gets at least four hours of sunlight and has well drained soil. The roots will rot if water stands around them.

Break up 3 inches of compacted soil with a rented tiller to aerate it. Place a sample of the soil in a zipper bag and send to your local nursery or garden supply center to test it for the pH level. Couch grass requires a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Amend the pH level of the soil by adding sulfur to lower it, or lime to raise it.

Mix equal amounts of lawn starter fertilizer and compost in a bucket and pour it over the entire area, spreading it evenly. Till the planting area again to ensure these soil conditioners go deep down into the soil.

Spread couch grass seeds over the area by hand, using 1 pound for every 250 square feet of lawn.

Rake the seeds so they go 1/4 inch deep into the soil to ensure good seed to soil contact. Water the delicate seeds gently and cover the area with mulch to prevent them from blowing away or birds eating them.

Water the area gently twice a day to ensure the soil is evenly moist. The seeds will take 10 days to two weeks to germinate. Once they germinate, water the couch lawn grass deeply but infrequently--about three to four times a week.

Fertilize the grass mildly but regularly during the growing season. Choose an organic fertilizer over a commercial one, and follow label directions when applying it.

Mow the grass when it reaches a height of 4 inches, bringing it down to 2 inches. Make sure the lawn has not been watered prior to mowing. Check that the blades of the lawnmower are sharp and clean.


Santa Ana is the hardiest type of couch grass since it can withstand the cold winter months and foot traffic better than other types.

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