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Pros and Cons of Mixing Bermuda and St. Augustine Grass for Your Lawn

You might not know that mixing Bermuda and St. Augustine grass can offer a visually appealing, year-round green lawn. While this blend can enhance your lawn's resilience, it also introduces complexities due to their differing shade tolerance and growth rates. Imagine a yard where one grass thrives in the sun while the other prefers shade—how will you manage that? Balancing these two grasses requires meticulous care and tailored maintenance strategies. Are you ready to uncover the secrets to achieving the perfect mixed lawn?

Key Takeaways

  • Mixing Bermuda and St. Augustine grass enhances visual appeal with unique textures and shades.
  • Bermuda grass requires full sun, while St. Augustine thrives in partial shade, leading to uneven growth.
  • Bermuda is drought-resistant, but St. Augustine needs frequent watering, complicating lawn maintenance.
  • Texture differences between fine Bermuda blades and coarse St. Augustine blades create an uneven lawn appearance.
  • Bermuda's faster growth rate can outcompete and choke out the slower-growing St. Augustine.

Benefits of Mixed Grass Lawns

Mixed grass lawns can offer a unique blend of textures and shades that enhance your yard's visual appeal. Imagine stepping into your backyard and being greeted by a tapestry of greens, each blade contributing to a dynamic, eye-catching landscape. By combining different grass types, you can create visual interest and a lawn that's never boring.

One of the fantastic benefits of mixed grass lawns is their ability to provide year-round green color. For instance, pairing Bermuda with tall fescue means you'll enjoy a lush, green lawn through both warm and cool seasons. This combination extends the active growing period, ensuring your yard looks vibrant for more months of the year.

Moreover, mixed grass lawns are often more resilient and adaptable to varying soil and climate conditions. Blending grasses like Bermuda and Zoysia can result in a sturdier lawn that withstands the ups and downs of weather changes. This adaptability means less stress for you and a healthier lawn overall.

Shade Tolerance

When considering the shade tolerance of different grasses, it's essential to note that St. Augustine thrives in partial shade, whereas Bermuda grass needs full sun to flourish. If you're thinking about creating a mixed lawn, this difference can pose significant challenges.

St. Augustine is shade-tolerant and will do well under trees or in areas that receive less sunlight throughout the day. On the other hand, Bermuda grass struggles in these conditions, leading to inconsistent growth.

Imagine investing time and effort into your lawn, only to see patchy areas where the Bermuda grass has failed to thrive. This inconsistency can be frustrating and creates an unbalanced appearance that's hard to overlook.

In shaded or partially shaded areas, St. Augustine grass will outcompete Bermuda grass, causing the latter to decline and die off. The result? A patchy, uneven lawn that needs constant maintenance.

To avoid these issues, it's wise to reconsider mixing these two types of grass if your lawn has shaded areas. St. Augustine's shade tolerance makes it the better choice in such spots, ensuring a more uniform and visually appealing lawn without the hassle of inconsistent growth.

Drought Resistance

resilience against water scarcity

Bermuda grass stands out for its impressive drought resistance, thriving even with minimal watering. If you're living in an area prone to dry spells, Bermuda grass can be a lifesaver, keeping your lawn green when other grasses might wither. It's like the camel of the grass world, surviving on little water and still looking good.

St. Augustine grass has different watering needs. It craves regular, frequent watering to maintain its lush, green appearance. When you mix Bermuda and St. Augustine grasses, you're setting up a bit of a watering tug-of-war. The Bermuda grass will be just fine with less water, but the St. Augustine grass might start showing signs of drought stress if it doesn't get enough moisture.

In dry conditions, Bermuda grass can quickly spread and outcompete the more water-dependent St. Augustine grass. This is where things get tricky. The differing drought resistance levels between these mixed grasses can make maintaining a uniform, healthy lawn quite the challenge. You'll need to find a balance in your watering routine, ensuring both types of grass get what they need without one suffering more than the other.

Uneven Appearance

One major drawback of combining Bermuda and St. Augustine grass is the uneven appearance that inevitably results from their differing growth patterns and textures. You'll notice that these grasses have distinct growth habits, leading to a lawn that looks patchy and inconsistent.

Bermuda grass spreads quickly and forms a dense mat, whereas St. Augustine grows in a more clumping fashion, leaving you with uneven patches.

Reasons why mixing these grasses can make your lawn look less than perfect:

  1. Growth Rate: Bermuda grass grows faster, often overtaking St. Augustine, creating areas where one grass dominates.
  2. Texture Contrast: St. Augustine has a broader blade compared to Bermuda, making the differences more noticeable.
  3. Different Maintenance: Each type of grass requires specific lawn care techniques, from mowing heights to watering schedules, complicating your maintenance routine.
  4. Grass Preferences: Bermuda thrives in full sun and can struggle in shade, while St. Augustine handles shade better, leading to a patchy lawn depending on sunlight exposure.

Texture Differences

contrasting tactile qualities highlighted

Combining Bermuda and St. Augustine grass results in a lawn with contrasting textures that can be visually unappealing. Bermuda grass boasts fine, thin blades, while St. Augustine has broad, coarse ones. When these two grasses are mixed, the difference in texture becomes glaringly obvious, making your lawn look uneven and mismatched.

Imagine walking across your lawn and feeling the distinct shift beneath your feet. The dense, thick growth of St. Augustine can make the finer, more delicate Bermuda grass seem sparse and disjointed. This contrast not only affects the visual appeal but also the tactile experience of your lawn. If you're someone who enjoys a uniform, smooth lawn, mixing these grasses can be quite frustrating.

Maintaining a consistent texture throughout your lawn becomes a challenge with such different grasses. The broad blades of St. Augustine can overshadow the finer Bermuda, creating patches that look out of place. It's like trying to blend two different types of fabric; no matter how hard you try, the difference in texture stands out.

Growth Rate Discrepancies

The significant difference in growth rates between Bermuda and St. Augustine grass can lead to a lawn that looks patchy and imbalanced. Mixing these grasses often results in a frustrating battle for dominance. Bermuda grass, known for its fast and aggressive growth, can easily overtake the slower-growing St. Augustine grass. This creates several issues for lawn uniformity.

Patchiness: Bermuda grass spreads rapidly, leaving areas of dense, matted growth next to sparse, stunted patches of St. Augustine grass.

Mowing Challenges: The differing growth rates make it tough to maintain an even mowing height. Bermuda grass thrives with frequent, lower cuts, while St. Augustine prefers to be left a bit taller.

Visual Imbalance: The aggressive spread of Bermuda can choke out St. Augustine, leading to an imbalanced appearance that's hard to correct.

Care Discrepancies: Each grass type has unique care needs, making it difficult to find a one-size-fits-all maintenance routine.

Mixing Bermuda and St. Augustine grass might seem like a good idea initially, but the growth rate discrepancies can quickly turn your lawn into a patchwork of competing grass types.

Maintenance Challenges

ongoing upkeep necessities

Maintaining a lawn with both Bermuda and St. Augustine grasses presents numerous challenges due to their differing care requirements. Bermuda grass thrives with frequent, low-height mowing between 0.5 to 1.5 inches, whereas St. Augustine needs a taller trim, around 2.5 to 4 inches. Balancing these different maintenance requirements can turn your Saturday morning into a juggling act.

St. Augustine grass is quite the thirsty type, demanding more water than Bermuda. If you're not careful, you might end up over-watering the Bermuda or under-watering the St. Augustine, leaving one grass type disgruntled. The different growth habits of these grasses also mean you'll be dealing with patches that grow at varying rates, complicating your task even further.

You'll have to carefully balance fertilizing and other lawn care activities to cater to both types. This can make maintaining a consistent, healthy appearance quite the formidable task. Managing a mixed grass lawn is no walk in the park—it's more like a hike with a backpack full of lawn equipment.

Thriving With Proper Care

To make your mixed Bermuda and St. Augustine lawn thrive, focus on meticulous soil preparation, regular aeration, and balanced fertilization.


Bermuda grass needs mowing at 0.5-1.5 inches, while St. Augustine requires 2.5-4 inches. Keep a close eye on your lawn and adjust your mower height accordingly. This can be a bit of a balancing act, but it's essential for the health of both grasses.


St. Augustine grass needs more frequent irrigation compared to Bermuda grass. Tailor your watering schedule to meet the needs of both, guaranteeing neither gets too dry or too waterlogged.


Use selective herbicides strategically to prevent Bermuda grass from overtaking St. Augustine grass. This helps maintain a balanced and aesthetically pleasing lawn.

Maintenance Timing:

Overseeding and dethatching at the right times are indispensable. Proper timing helps both types of grass establish and grow without choking each other out.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Mix Bermuda and St. Augustine Grass?

Imagine your lawn as a battlefield, with Bermuda and St. Augustine grass clashing. Mixing them isn't ideal.

Bermuda's aggressive growth and need for frequent, low mowing can overwhelm St. Augustine's slower, shade-loving nature. You'll end up with a patchy, uneven mess.

Their differing water and nutrient needs make maintaining harmony tough.

Will Bermuda Grass Choke Out St. Augustine Grass?

Bermuda grass will choke out St. Augustine grass. Bermuda's aggressive nature, with its rapid spreading rhizomes and stolons, means it quickly overtakes the slower-growing St. Augustine.

Bermuda forms dense mats, outcompeting St. Augustine for light, nutrients, and water. Once Bermuda establishes itself, it's incredibly difficult to remove, often requiring manual effort or selective herbicides.

Mixing these grasses can create a challenging, patchy lawn.

What Happens if You Mix Two Types of Grass?

Mixing two types of grass can lead to a patchy, uneven lawn. Bermuda grass, for example, grows aggressively and can overtake St. Augustine.

They've different mowing and watering needs, making maintenance a nightmare. St. Augustine needs more water, while Bermuda thrives with less.

The result? A lawn that looks mismatched and requires extra effort to keep up. It's like trying to make two puzzle pieces fit where they don't belong.

What Grass Mixes Well With Bermuda?

You're wondering what grass mixes well with Bermuda, right? Buffalograss is a great warm-season partner due to its similar growth habits and low maintenance needs.

You might also consider overseeding with perennial ryegrass for a green lawn in cooler months.

In areas of change, tall fescue thrives in shade while Bermuda loves the sun.

Zoysia grass is another solid choice, blending seamlessly with Bermuda's growth pattern.

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Matt Zimmerman, creator of ZimmWriter, applies his multidisciplinary skills to deliver results-oriented AI solutions. His background in SEO, law (J.D.), and engineering (B.S.M.E.) helped create one of the best AI writers in the world. Matt prioritizes continuous improvement by balancing his passion for coding with part-time work at the United States Patent and Trademark Office and his family responsibilities.