How to Grow Fescue Grass in Your Yard

Lawn mower on shaded, fescue grass yard

Types of Fescue Grasses

Fescue grasses are generally divided into tall and fine varieties.

Tall Fescue Grasses

This broad-leaved grass is the most heat and drought tolerant of all fescues, but it’s coarser in texture. Tall fescue is the type more often seen in common lawn seed blends.

Fine Fescue Grasses

These types of fescue have finer blades and a softer texture than tall fescue. Fine fescue tolerates cold and shade a little better than tall fescue. Popular types of fine fescue include:

  • Chewings Fescue: The fescue with the finest texture, chewings fescue also has an upright clumping growth habit. It’s a little less traffic tolerant than other fescues but tolerates poor and sandy soil, so it’s often mixed with other seed blends for shady and tough areas.
  • Creeping Red Fescue: This type of fescue is very fine textured and grows by rhizomes that creep underground. Its shade tolerance and ability to spread makes creeping red fescue a great choice for shady lawns.
  • Hard Fescue: This slow growing grass has a deep blue-green color and is the most heat tolerant of the fine fescues. It tolerates salt, drought, poor soil, and shade. Hard fescue is slow growing and is often used for unmown meadows, where it tops out at about 6” tall.
  • Sheep’s Fescue: This fescue grows in large clumps, up to 16” tall, and is often used for erosion control and naturalized areas.


Click below to continue reading

17 COMMENTS

  1. We have new fescue grass this year. This Fall we left a 6″ boundary forit to grow on a side. Will it take 2 or 3 mos. for the side of the yard to grow with the fescue grass
    enlargement/root system.

  2. MOST INFORMATIONAL! I SEEDED REBELS FESCUE 2 MONTHS AGO AND IT IS GROWING! I PLANTED IN BARE AREAS AND WATER TWICE WEEKLY! I LIVE IN SC, AND IT GETS PRETTY HOT! I REALIZE I SHOULD HAVE WAITED BUT I PLAN TO SEED THE REST OF MY LAWN IN SEPT.
    THANKS!!

  3. Can I cover fescue grass with the weed control ground cover mesh to keep birds from eating the seeds? How long can I do that? Only dug up soil to clear root and weeds the topped soil with seeds covered and walked across to push soil down a little. I’m new.

  4. I have Tall red fescue self seeding,on a new lawn planted in may, grew in beautiful, on a shady hillside in Maryland. Now it is all brown and red? What did we do wrong?

  5. hi I am new to this lawn growing business and my problem is I live in the far southern part of Alberta, Canada only a few miles North of the Sweet Grass Hills of Montana. The land it purchased has a beautiful house but the yard was always neglected and it shows as the grass has grown in large clumps with bare patches everywhere. My question is can I drag a Diamond Harrow of these clumps to break them up and spread the fescue seed to help fill in the barren ground….. I would drag the harrows over the lawn during each rain as I do not have good water on site to water the new seed, the artesian well I have is very soft but also very high in Sodium. My lawn covers about 12 acres..

    Thanks,

    Roy

  6. My fescue has always had brown patch in mid July
    Thru august but this year many spots irregular in
    Size and shape gray in color, dead spots and
    Bald spots. Can you tell me what you think
    Has happened.

  7. HELLO
    I have a hard clay soil only 2-3 inches on top of coarse sand. There are many oaks and cedar in the area which leaves the soil rather acid. It is south central Wisconsin with some erosion of the lawn due to grade. I can do fall seeding but prefer spring seeding. The lawn only gets 3-4 hrs of sun at most and everything I have planted seems to die off in the winter and not grow very full or hardy in the summer, What can you suggest?

  8. I tilled yard in February in Athens TX. then immediately fertilized sandy soil with 13.13.13 Waited 30 to 45 days planting fescue seed. Started coming up but now the first of May it all looks brown and dead. What did I do wrong ? Billy

  9. I just planted tall Fescue in really hard clay soil. I’m crossing my fingers, but this article was so informative and will take the guesswork out of how to care for it. Thank you!

    • Hi, Juanita,
      We suggest contacting your local Master Gardeners association for the best recommendation tailored to your geographic area.
      Here’s where you can do that: https://mastergardener.osu.edu/home
      Master gardeners train on a range of topics so they can provide advice, at no charge, for people in their area.
      Thanks for your question, and good luck!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here