Types of Grass in NC

Residential Landscape Maintenance in Youngsville, NC

As a leading landscaping company in the area, our Wake Forest residential lawn care experts understand what it takes to create a stunning outdoor space for our clients. The key to a beautiful landscape lies in selecting the right grass type that can withstand North Carolina’s unique climate and enhance the beauty of your property. 

Whether you’re aiming for a velvety lawn that thrives in the sun or a resilient variety that can handle varying shade patterns, our guide to the types of grass in NC is designed to provide you with valuable insights and recommendations for achieving the lawn of your dreams. 

Factors Influencing Grass Selection in North Carolina

When it comes to cultivating a healthy and vibrant lawn in North Carolina, one size definitely does not fit all. The state’s diverse geography, ranging from the coastal areas to the mountainous regions, brings about a wide range of climate conditions and soil types that directly impact the success of different grass varieties. 

Climate Zones in North Carolina

Understanding the various climate zones of NC is crucial for making an informed decision about which grass types will thrive on your property as well as understanding the best time frame to plant grass seeds for your lawn.

Coastal Plains

The Coastal Plain region of North Carolina experiences hot and humid summers, making it a challenge for many grasses to flourish. However, certain warm-season grasses have adapted well to these conditions. Bermuda grass, for instance, thrives in the Coastal Plains’ high temperatures and can handle the humidity. Its aggressive growth and heat tolerance make it a popular choice for homeowners seeking a lush lawn that can withstand the coastal climate.


The Piedmont region, characterized by its moderate climate, offers a more balanced environment for various grass types. Warm-season and cool-season grasses both have their merits here. Kentucky Bluegrass, a cool-season grass, can thrive during the cooler months, while Tall Fescue is renowned for its versatility and ability to tolerate a range of temperatures. If you’re looking for a mix of both, a Tall Fescue and Kentucky Bluegrass blend can provide year-round greenery for your lawn.


In the Mountains of North Carolina, cooler temperatures and shorter growing seasons define the landscape design and installation process. As a result, cool-season grasses like Ryegrass and Fine Fescue are better suited for this region. These grasses can endure the colder weather and still offer a vibrant lawn. Keep in mind that mountainous areas often face challenges such as late spring frosts and early fall freezes, so selecting hardier grasses is essential for a successful lawn.

Soil Types and pH Levels

The soil beneath your lawn plays a significant role in the health of your grass. North Carolina’s soil varies from region to region, with sandy soils dominating the Coastal Plain and clayey soils found in the Piedmont and Mountain regions. Conducting a soil test can reveal the pH level and composition of your soil, helping you choose the right grass type. For instance, Bermuda grass prefers slightly acidic soils, while Tall Fescue can tolerate a broader pH range.

Sunlight and Shade Patterns

The amount of sunlight your lawn receives is another critical consideration when selecting a grass type. Bermuda and Zoysia grasses thrive in full sun and can withstand the Coastal Plain’s intense sunlight. On the other hand, shaded areas in the Piedmont and Mountain regions might require grasses like Fine Fescue or Tall Fescue, which are more shade-tolerant.

Rainfall and Watering Considerations

North Carolina experiences a range of rainfall patterns throughout the year. Coastal areas tend to receive more consistent rainfall, while the Mountains can experience drier spells. This variability impacts the amount of water your lawn will receive naturally. Choosing grasses that can handle drought conditions, such as Bermuda grass and Centipede grass, can save you from excessive watering. Conversely, Tall Fescue and Ryegrass may need more consistent irrigation.

Warm-Season Grasses in NC

Warm-season grasses are well-suited to North Carolina’s climate, particularly in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont regions where hot and humid summers prevail. These grasses thrive during the warmer months, turning brown during winter dormancy. Let’s explore some of the top warm-season grass options for your North Carolina lawn.

Bermuda Grass

Bermuda grass in North Carolina

Bermuda grass is a popular warm-season grass known for its fine texture, dense growth, and rich green color during its active growing season. It’s highly adaptable and can handle high foot traffic, making it a favored choice for lawns, sports fields, and golf courses. Bermuda grass establishes quickly, creating a lush carpet-like appearance.

Bermuda grass is an excellent choice for homeowners who desire a lush and vibrant lawn that can withstand heavy use for their residential landscaping design. It’s perfect for families, pet owners, and anyone who enjoys outdoor activities on their lawns. Due to its heat and drought tolerance, Bermuda grass is particularly well-suited for North Carolina’s Coastal Plain and Piedmont regions, where temperatures can soar during the summer months.

Zoysia Grass

Zoysia Grass in a North Carolina Lawn

Zoysia grass is a warm-season grass known for its thick and lush growth habit. It has a fine texture and forms a dense turf that’s both visually appealing and durable. Zoysia grass has excellent heat tolerance and can adapt to a variety of soil conditions.

Zoysia grass is an ideal choice for homeowners who want a well-manicured lawn with a dense texture. Its ability to tolerate moderate foot traffic makes it suitable for lawns with both recreational activities and aesthetic appeal. Zoysia grass is often chosen for front yards, backyards, and commercial landscapes.

Centipede Grass

centipede grass and a wheelbarrow full of sod beside a building

Centipede grass is a warm-season grass known for its low-maintenance requirements and ability to thrive in poor soils. It has a coarse texture and a light green color that adds a unique charm to lawns.

Centipede grass is an excellent choice for homeowners who prefer a more laid-back approach to lawn care. Its low maintenance requirements make it suitable for those who want a green lawn without the need for constant attention. Centipede grass is often found in less formal landscapes, naturalized areas, and properties with sandy or acidic soils.

Cool-Season Grasses

Cool-season grasses thrive in North Carolina’s cooler months, offering vibrant green lawns during the fall, winter, and spring. These grasses are particularly well-suited for the Piedmont and Mountain regions, where milder temperatures prevail. Let’s explore some of the top cool-season grass options for your Raleigh lawn.

Kentucky Bluegrass

Kentucky Bluegrass in North Carolina

Kentucky Bluegrass is a popular cool-season grass known for its fine texture and deep green color. It forms a dense and lush turf that’s soft underfoot, creating an inviting and picturesque lawn. Kentucky Bluegrass is well-suited for lawns that aim for a manicured appearance.

Kentucky Bluegrass is an excellent choice for homeowners who value a well-maintained and visually appealing lawn. It’s ideal for front yards, where its fine texture and rich color can enhance your home’s curb appeal. While it can handle some foot traffic, Kentucky Bluegrass is best suited for lawns with less intense use.

Fescue Grass

fescue grass for lawns in North Carolina

Tall Fescue is a versatile cool-season grass known for its adaptability and durability. It has a coarser texture compared to some other grass types, offering a robust and resilient turf that’s well-suited for various conditions.

Tall Fescue is a practical choice for homeowners seeking a sturdy and low-maintenance lawn. It can handle moderate foot traffic, making it suitable for backyards, play areas, and properties with pets. Its adaptability to varying sunlight conditions makes it an excellent option for lawns with mixed shade and sun exposure.

Fine Fescue

Fine Fescue includes a group of cool-season grasses known for their fine texture and shade tolerance. This group includes Chewings Fescue, Hard Fescue, Sheep Fescue, and Creeping Red Fescue. They have a more delicate appearance compared to Tall Fescue.

Fine Fescue is an excellent choice for areas where maintaining a formal and lush appearance is not a priority. It’s ideal for properties with mature trees or areas that receive limited sunlight. Fine Fescue is often used in naturalized landscapes, woodland gardens, and properties with less intensive lawn care requirements.


Ryegrass is a cool-season grass known for its rapid germination and establishment. It provides quick green coverage in lawns during the cooler months and is often used for overseeding warm-season lawns to maintain greenery during the winter.

Ryegrass is commonly used for overseeding warm-season lawns, providing vibrant green coverage during the cooler months when warm-season grasses go dormant. It’s an excellent choice for homeowners who want a year-round green lawn and are willing to oversee their existing lawn in the fall.

Contact Our Wake Forest Landscaping Experts Today

At Turf TitanZ, we’re passionate about helping you achieve the lawn of your dreams. Our experienced landscaping and lawn fertilization professionals understand the intricacies of North Carolina’s climate and terrain, and we’re here to guide you through the process of selecting the perfect grass type and creating a stunning outdoor space that reflects your vision.

Whether you’re seeking resilient warm-season grass, a lush cool-season variety, or other grasses as a tailored blend that suits your property’s unique conditions, our experts are here to assist you every step of the way.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation by calling us at  (919) 562-0771 or filling out the contact form below to get started. 

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