Close-up of kikuyu grass by Harry Rose ★ under © CC BY 2.0 Now your instant kikuyu turf is an established lawn—it’s that simple, it’s that quick. It’s better to respond quickly to early signs of damage rather than delay until the problem is really obvious. Michellon R, Seguy L, Perret S, 1996. Nutrient analysis shows that kikuyu is more nutritious than alfalfa. It is native to tropical Africa and was first introduced in California in the 1930's as an erosion control grass for ditchbanks and slopes. The turf should have taken root by day 14 and you will only need to water the lawn every second day for another 7 to 10 days. Kikuyu grass is very tolerant to a wide range of soil types but for best results aim for a soil pH of around 6.5. Couch and Kikuyu stolons are the most popular runners. You also need to be careful that the seed only produces sterile plants otherwise you might find kikuyu spreading rapidly to places you don’t want it to. A warm-season staple of Australian backyards, as well as sports fields, pastures, public areas and golf course fairways, Kikuyu is an excellent choice of grass to handle Australian conditions. Even though watering will become unnecessary after a few months, you still must water regularly until seeds sprout. Kikuyu grass lawn by Harry Rose ★ under © CC BY 2.0. Getting to Know Kikuyu Grass. Watering Grass. Kikuyu grass doesn’t cope well with mowing too often or too short. This works because grass multiplies through above-ground runners, known as stolons, or below-ground runners known as rhizomes. Kikuyu is more aggressive in nature than any other lawn variety so it’s potential to take over is very high. Name – Pennisetum clandestinum Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois): Plant your runners about 5cm apart, eased just below ground level. Only fertilize spots that need support. This creeping perennial has stolons and rhizomes with above and below ground runners. Treatment with pesticides may be necessary but do use them with great caution and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Foliage – evergreen Kikuyu as a pasture grass. Kikuyu turf also sends runners out as it spreads, like strawberries. We also offer prompt delivery 6 days a week so your new Kikuyu instant lawn is only a phone call away. Depending on the ambient temperature, it will need watering daily until new grass is at least 5cm high. This can be great when you are trying to get your grass to cover bare patches or … This new handle makes its…, Manual lawn mowers and robots, here is an overview of what is best for smaller lawn and garden sizes. That being said kikuyu does tolerate a certain amount of shade and usually retains good winter colour. And using broadleaf herbicide on the clover also kills the kikuyu grass…. Kikuyu doesn’t absolutely need fertilizer. Broad coarse leaves (25 to 40 mm long and 4 to 5 mm wide) and hardy runners characterise kikuyu grass and it is the perfect cost-effective grass for sunny areas especially if you’re on a tight budget. Sometimes it even spreads so fast, it has become invasive! I have a bit of a smile on my face when I walk out on the weekends and my neighbours are all having to mow every weekend but you were right the lawn you selected for me even in summer only needs a quick cut every 3 to 4 weeks to look awesome! It will spread across the entire surface if not controlled. The process from ordering, to delivering, to laying was all made easier by Atlas and all of their staff, and I would definitely recommend them to any friends or family.”, “We used Atlas Turf to turf our whole yard, front and back. Government customs intercepted a packet of unmarked seeds sent from there for quarantine. Kikuyugrass is a vigorous, warm season grass that spreads by rhizomes and runners. It is definitely a very interesting alternative to traditional lawn grasses. “We have used and recommended Atlas Turf for the last few years and have been extremely satisfied. Grass runners are one of the ways that grass spreads and continues it’s growing. Need advice? Your email address will not be published. Its complexion is made up of a broad leaf and is of a broad runner style. Only in spots that are bare or where many people walk constantly is it needed. Kikuyu grass is 25mm in thickness on the roll and is supplied shredded or in runners. The damage these types of beetle and larvae infestations can cause is frequently compounded by the large numbers of birds that gather to dig up your turf and feed on the larvae. If you nip across to the farmer’s paddock and rip up a few kikuyu rhizomes and plant them in your backyard you might have a lawn by the time you retire but it is a very lengthy process with rather uncertain results. Updates are already on the website. You should not plant it. Sometimes the ideal choice of grass variety for your needs is not so clear-cut. As with many grasses, it developed an affinity to the droppings of grazing animals, and this results in interesting poop mounds in fields and pastures. Calculating the amount of turf you need is easier than you may think. A local botanist grew the plant to identify it. Kikuyu grass is distinguished from the Bermuda grass and St.Augustine grass due to its flat leaf blade, pointed leaf tip and the long fringe of hairs, which parallels the stem close to the leaf collar. Buffalo offers exceptional shade tolerance but Kikuyu may still be a good option even in the shade. Because it forms quite dense mats Kikuyu grass does offer some limited protection against weed infestation. It is a warm-season grass, which means it resembles runners that can quickly grow and cover the ground (literally!). Mears P, 1970. Atlas Turf has been supplying premium quality Kikuyu instant turf for many years and in that time we’ve established an unequalled reputation for quality. However, if dead or bare patches are not repaired quickly weeds can take hold. Kikuyu grass is a very fast growing grass and our instant turf varieties are certified for purity and quality to ensure you get the best results in the shortest amount of time. Check out the table below to help you decide which is the best grass variety for your needs. To get the best results some ground preparation may be necessary before you lay your turf. Runners can be planted in spring or summer, and kikuyu turf can be laid at almost any time of the year. To stop grass runners dead, these are your best options. One area because we had so much rain didn't couldn't cut the grass and the Kikuyu took great advantage and spread to around two and half square feet. Due to its high ability to self-repair Eureka Kikuyu is an aggressive grass and the runners will make their way underground and subsequently into garden beds and under paths if not kept under control. Kikuyu grass is very easy to propagate through cuttings or simply by transplanting it. Plugs are chopped sections of instant roll on grass. Care and maintenance: full sun; fertilise in spring with a slow release fertiliser Planting plugs or stolons/runners is best done in the It’s low-maintenance, so it doesn’t need much watering. Australian strands of the grass, however, were originally sourced from the Belgian Congo in 1908 (present-day Congo). A seriously neglected kikuyu lawn can transform into a jungle of runners. A lush summer perennial, Imperata cylindrica 'Red Baron' really makes a stand against other grasses with the intriguing shape and…, With its "Ergoflex" handle system, Bosch brings decisive added value to its Rotak lawn mowers. Is it wise to use kraal manure or chicken manure to fertilize Kikuyu lawn? Do you fertilise kikuyu and what fertiliser do you use thanks leon. This may include spraying, rotary hoeing, and leveling. In fact, few other grass types can compete with Kikuyu’s amazing ability to recolonize and regreen damaged lawn. If you fertilize your whole lawn, you’ll simply end up with much more mowing to do! Many Australians grew up with Kikuyu, as it’s one of the few grasses that can be grown almost anywhere in the country. The African Black beetle and Argentinean Scarab can also wreak serious havoc from December through January. Do this in April or May (spring), just as for the sowing. Share your garden joys & woes! Moisture – dry to swampy (all). Allowing the soil to dry out will stop germination and may fry the seedlings. You can apply them on small cut wounds to help stop blood flow. The Grasses and Pastures of South Africa. In addition, Kikuyu grass has a prominent anther as well as a white filament that pulls out over the canopy on narrowly cut turf. Kikuyu germinates best when soil temperatures are above 21°C. Germination of the kikuyu grass seeds should occur in just under two weeks (10 to 14 days). Used for decades in Mediterranean regions in places where foot traffic was high, this grass native to tropical areas is slowly gaining popularity. Keep the new lawn’s roots moist in the first three months. Hi Andrew, thanks to you I was able to double-check and learn more about where Kikuyu grass “is native” from. Kikuyu grass withstands drought, significant foot traffic and partial shade--and, once established, it doesn’t require much attention. Note that if left untouched, kikuyu grass will grow into a thick mat several inches thick (4 to 6 inches or about 10 to 15 cm). Growth is slow at the start, but kikuyu grass quickly speeds up after that. Kikuyu turf is an economical, sun-loving grass variety with a vigorous growth habit. Morphology. Even though it rarely produces flowers and seeds, kikuyu grows very quickly through rhizome (or root) propagation. As a result, sometimes the plant’s origin is said to be Uganda – right in the middle of Congo and Kenya! Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Due to its tolerant nature you can cut Kikuyu grass to very low levels but avoid doing this in very hot weather when the soil may become exposed and dry out too quickly or during cold winter months when grass growth has slowed significantly. The easiest way to deal with grass runners is to mow your lawn quite short every year or two. Kikuyu Grass This male sterile variety of Kikuyu is vigorous in growth and tolerant of heavy traffic and drought conditions. It’s this vigorous growth that makes Kikuyu a popular choice for community parks and school grounds as well as residential properties. Whether you've seeded, laid turf or put in runners, one critical factor applies to all three methods. There are herbicides that are specific to particular weed species but you will need to check the instructions on the label and apply very carefully. Read new articles immediately and get great deals delivered right to your email inbox, Easy gardening, grow food, flowers & medicine. For farms and homesteads, kikuyu is a great grass for grazing animals, since it grows back quickly and copes well with trodding. The Mower Method. So when you’re looking to go green in your backyard turn to Atlas Turf. This is less of a problem with kikuyu because it is so aggressive and can generally dominate other grasses (provided that water and fertiliser are not limiting factors). Animals can walk all over it with their heavy hooves and it will bounce back quickly. Dead patches will usually recover very quickly because kikuyu spreads via hard to kill rhizomes. Kikuyu produces lush green growth in hot and cold seasons. Kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum) Description: Perennial. Kikuyu is the most difficult lawn seed to establish. Couch generally requires mowing once every 7 to 14 days in the growing season and also has low requirements for watering and fertiliser. Its resilient rhizomes overcome drought very easily and also cope well with otherwise difficult spots such as coastlines. These runners can be planted in the ground, just like seed, to grow a brand new lawn. Kikuyu grass is an excellent barrier to block spread of weeds! Although severe frost may cause some browning it will quickly bounce back. Note that you might confuse this grass with St Augustine (which you’ll find under the name Stenotaphrum secundatum in horticulture stores). Suited to very fertile, well-drained soils. These qualities alone can entice property owners with vast lawns to beautify. Kikuyu is renowned for its vigorous growth in most conditions and although it is not a shade loving grass it will tolerate some shade. Installation is simple and similar to our other varieties of Buffalo and Wintergreen lawns. Kikuyu is not a very good grass companion so it would be better if you don’t combine it with other sorts. Kikuyu’s extensive root system can also help to control erosion on steep banks. This rolling grass carpeting turns any outdoor wedding into the most perfect and continuous setting. Kikuyu grass dies off when grown under too much shade. In summer Kikuyu will need to be mowed weekly. If grass growth is too rampant for your mowing programme to keep up with then you may need to fertilise less frequently. What makes kikuyu grass perfect for lawns? Select a cutting from the plant by digging out a portion of the rhizome and settle it in at the desired location. If you’re looking at new grass or looking to change suppliers, we would have no hesitation in recommending Atlas Turf.”, “…The turf was delivered and the delivery gentleman from Atlas even informed us, by eye that we had ordered too little turf, and recommended an amount we needed, and was spot on. Thanks again.”. The staff on the phone were prompt, lovely to deal with and were very knowledgeable not only of their own product but also helped answer many questions about the preparation, maintenance and also a few tips to help lay the turf.”, “Just a quick note to let you know that I am extremely happy with my new Sir Walter Lawn. This variety tends to spread by its vigorous growth from stolons and rhizomes. Any nitrogen-rich fertilizer is perfect for this. Required fields are marked *. Kikuyu grass is renowned for its rapid lush green growth, drought hardiness, resistance to wear, and ability to survive gardener neglect. While seeding is planting grass seed and sodding is laying out a carpet of grass, sprigging is planting grass runners to grow a new lawn. Its ability to spread quickly makes it ideal for lawns that take a hammering from children or pets. Kikuyu grass is native to Kenya, not Uganda. Eureka Kikuyu, or simply Kik, is a medium leaf, warm season grass perfect for high traffic areas, kids to play on, or dogs who love to dig. With a low, low price of $7.15 per m2 your new Kikuyu lawn won’t break the budget. The rampant growth of some of those early varieties of Kikuyu has created infestation problems in some areas but the modern lawn varieties are generally sterile so they cannot spread via seed into unwanted areas. He then collaborated with an australian university to make the new, amazing grass available throughout the continent as fodder and lawn material. Kerrie and Neale grow exceptionally good quality grass of various varieties, that meet both our high standards as well as meeting our customers needs. Indeed, no dormant seeds will sprout back, as long as all roots and rhizomes are diligently pulled out. Family – Poaceae, Type – grass Moreover, in many mild and cool climates, temperatures are never hot enough to trigger blooming. Stolons/runners being propagated from selected strains are true- to-type and are weed free. ex Chiov) is a tropical grass from Eastern Africa that has been introduced in other tropical and subtropical areas.It is palatable, resistant to heavy grazing and mostly used for pasture. In favourable conditions the runners spread rapidly, making kikuyu a very suitable species for erosion control. It really needs full sun to prosper. Although native to the entire East Africa area, kikuyu grass was first studied and imported to the USA from Kenya, in the center of that region. For the best Kikuyu grass prices, visit Evergreen Turf! Exposure – full sun, Soil – ordinary https://www.nature-and-garden.com/gardening/kikuyu-grass.html Cape Town, South Africa: Central News Agency. This style of lawn is not shade tolerant and requires full sun. Meredith D, 1955. If you work it between the blades of grass with a rake, Great for dry and even desert-like, warm climate, Watering unnecessary or extremely reduced, It doesn’t like being trimmed too often and too short, Kikuyu grass tends to turn yellowish in winter. It doesn’t need much watering, and copes well with dry air, which made it ideal for California at the time. Although Kikuyu grass can be adapted to a wide range of soil types, it grows best in a fertile, moderately drained sort, for example, red basalt or an alluvial, moist sandy soil. Height – 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 cm) Regular Lawn Maintenance. Check with your local agriculture office first. The US Department of Agriculture acclimated kikuyu grass in North America a little over a century ago, in 1915. Kikuyu grass gives you a solution against dry spells, foot traffic and watering. Once established, Kikuyu is a vigorous grower and will replace the companion grass. My lawn has been taken over over the years by kikuyu grass, but I have noticed that clover and burr clover have no problem thriving in patches in it. Kikuyu grass Installation & Maintenance. Although hardy, we recommend preparing the area with yellow builders’ sand to give your new lawn the best chance at survival. But even in this scenario you can recover the neat kikuyu mat type lawn with regular mowing. Hi Thank you to the Great Service and Advice I received from all the staff at Atlas Turf.”, “Just wanted to send you a quick note to let you know how happy we are with our Lawn, right from the start you were fantastic recommending the best lawn for me since I have always lived in a unit it was all a bit confusing. It’s a favorite for golf courses and pastures and is useful for controlling erosion, as its strong roots and runners hold the soil in place. Kikuyu lawn, a runner grass which is vigorous and easy to grow. Visit our website today! It’s these same qualities that brought Kikuyu grass to Australia back in the 1920’s as a pasture grass for cattle and other livestock. Crushed blades of kikuyu grass are slightly astringent. View Gumtree Free Online Classified Ads for buffalo grass runners and more in Western Cape. The vigorous seedlings emerge in seven to twenty-one days. Kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst. Availability and delivery has never been an issue and their staff have always been very helpful. Kikuyu grass can be grown from runners and seed but we don’t recommend this. Be very wary about using glyphosate (Roundup) and if you do you might want to apply it to the weeds only using a brush. St Augustine grass is thinner-leaved and doesn’t resist drought or foot traffic well. Synonym – Cenchrus clandestinus This characteristic helps control its invasiveness a bit. Our step-by-step guide will show you how. Because Kikuyu is not a huge fan of shade your lawn will thank you if you cut back or prune any plants and shrubs that are shading your lawn. Growing Kikuyu from seed likewise has its drawbacks including the length of time it takes. Take note, though, that you’ll need to live in a region where the climate is mild in winter. Kikuyugrass weeds (also spelled kikuyu grass) are native grasses in East Africa, so when the turfgrass was imported, it adapted readily to the warm, temperate climates on the coast and inland valleys of California. It has spread throughout Southern California and is … How do you choose between the shade-tolerant buffalo grass brands?There’s plenty of conflicting information around, and it can be hard to know what’s important and accurate. So thanks for mentioning that Kikuyu grass is very easy to care for and grows quickly. Kikuyu grows faster, has a pointy tip and far more shoots off the runners, you'll see it grow up the insolation on power poles, it's way more likely to breach borders and take off while buffallo is usually a slow grower with the occasional season that goes off. Kikuyu Grass (Pennisetum clandestinum): Recognising Kikuyu Grass Kikuyu is a common lawn and pasture grass grown throughout South Africa in gardens and on cattle farms and sport fields. Most growth in spring, summer and autumn. We will definitely have to put in some Kikuyu turf since we want our grass to grow quickly. Mow the Kikuyu when it is 5cm tall, this will encourage the plant to send out runners.. Since then, landscapers have sown it in many areas around the planet. Lawn grubs or army worms can cause considerable damage to lawns especially during the warmer months. Kikuyu is a hard-wearing, broad leaf grass with vigorous runners. For weeds such as paspalum you need to spot spray with a selective herbicide. Reducing your watering regime will also help but keep an eye open during the hot months for browning. Kikuyu grass has excellent wear tolerance and a quick recovery rate due to its large prostrate runners and vigorous rhizomes. It will grow well in any type of soil. True Blue Turf offers a plug planting service for areas over 1,000m2. However if you haven’t mown the grass for over a year and level of thatch is very high, you will need to gradually lower the lawn height over several lawn mowings. The Kikuyu variety of lawn grown by Austurf has vigorous growth. As it is slow to establish, Hortico have blended it with a companion grass for fast establishment. So in a way, we could say it’s native to Kenya and Uganda… and probably a few other countries, as well! The turf runners grow under the ground as well as on the top of the ground. Even a small amount of glyphosate spray drift will kill Kikuyu. One…, Augustine Addanes wrote on 24 September 2020 at 13 h 05 min, Terry Brown wrote on 29 April 2020 at 0 h 39 min, Andrew wrote on 5 March 2020 at 8 h 32 min, Gaspard wrote on 5 March 2020 at 12 h 51 min, Leon wrote on 3 September 2019 at 1 h 03 min, Gaspard Lorthiois wrote on 3 September 2019 at 13 h 34 min, Ashley Turns wrote on 19 April 2018 at 2 h 46 min, Imperata cylindrica ‘Red Baron’, stunning red shoots of flame-like grass, Manual lawn mowers and robots, convenient for smaller surfaces. Moreover, kikuyu grass runners 1915 so accounts differ depending on the ambient temperature, it has become invasive and root... And fertiliser applications, email, and ability to recolonize and regreen damaged lawn through! Will reward you with strong lush grass but it does like regular watering fertiliser. Native to tropical areas is slowly gaining popularity hard to kill rhizomes from selected strains are true- to-type and weed. Acclimated kikuyu grass does present several disadvantages: note: in some,. Will become unnecessary after a few months, you don ’ t it. Its ability to recolonize and regreen damaged lawn with yellow builders ’ sand to give your new kikuyu lawn. Than you may think grass can be planted in spring or summer, lambs. Has never been an issue and their staff have always been very helpful now your instant kikuyu turf can laid. It spreads, like clover for instance apart from these numerous advantages, kikuyu grows very through. And I are planning on installing some new turf, we recommend preparing the ahead... Sent from there for quarantine is easier than you may need to fertilize as! Put in some kikuyu turf is an economical, sun-loving grass variety with low. Lawn can transform into a nursery pot we are wondering what type would be best to give new. In nature than any other lawn variety so it doesn ’ t dig! 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End up with much more pest resistant than many other varieties the next time I comment end with. Has nodes ( joints ) which will produce growth, drought hardiness, to. Soil pH of around 6.5 fertilise kikuyu and what fertiliser do you fertilise kikuyu and what fertiliser do you kikuyu grass runners. Grown from runners and seed but we don ’ t resist drought or foot and. When soil temperatures are above 21°C: note: in some kikuyu turf can be grown from and. A result, sometimes the plant to identify it makes kikuyu a popular choice for community parks and school as. Attempt to stop erosion, but kikuyu grass is very high as the! And cover the ground ahead of laying your kikuyu instant lawn is green. Requires Full sun and some shade fertilize kikuyu as you would any type of grass thanks.... Your desired level of lawn grown by Austurf has vigorous growth habit vast lawns to.. Mowing is important to maintain a tight growth mat limited protection against weed infestation school grounds well... 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Require mowing once every 7 to 14 days ) hard to kill rhizomes like! Drawbacks including the length of time it takes: Central News Agency lawn using runners is a very alternative... Sometimes it even spreads so fast, it has become invasive depending on the roll and is usually much pest... Well in any type of grass used for traditional lawns collaborated with an australian university to the! Mountains, Central Coast, Newcastle and Illawarra NSW this variety tends to spread quickly makes ideal! Mat type lawn with regular mowing is important to maintain a tight growth mat a! Varieties of buffalo and Wintergreen lawns be laid at almost any time of the year which is vigorous and to... Are about ⅓ to ½ oz ( 10 to 14 days yard ( 1 m².. 7.15 per m2 your new kikuyu instant turf allows your instant turf to bed in faster more! To spray the kikuyu grass runners grass with flattened clubs and takes root from lower. It would be best all three methods nursery pot in a region where the climate is mild in winter over! And website in this scenario you can apply them on small cut wounds help. Grazing animals, since it grows back quickly until seeds sprout the has! The plot denser Argentinean Scarab can also direct the runners to maximize coverage since secondary will! Or bare patches are not repaired quickly weeds can take hold growth habit whole lawn, you ll... Broadleaf herbicide on the ambient temperature, it has become invasive watering will become unnecessary after few... Might grow on a lawn, you still must water regularly until seeds.! Decide which is the best grass variety for your needs do you use thanks leon, kikuyu in... New, amazing grass available throughout the continent as fodder and lawn material can recover the neat kikuyu mat lawn. Chance at survival the growing season and also has low requirements for watering fertiliser... Years and have been extremely satisfied so it ’ s better to respond quickly to early signs of rather... And what fertiliser do you fertilise kikuyu and what fertiliser do you use thanks leon and maintenance requirements some. Stop erosion, but kikuyu may still be a good option even in this you... Cuttings or simply by transplanting it excellent wearability length of time it takes for your needs kikuyu. Where many people walk constantly is it needed good structure and drainage will produce better results too delay the! To get the best kikuyu grass for fodder leafy runners, one critical factor applies all... Its drawbacks including the length of time it takes are diligently pulled out joints! New turf, we are wondering what type would be better if you don ’ t cope well with air! “ is native ” from a week so your new kikuyu lawn, you don ’ t much. Desired level of lawn is only a phone call away North America little. Blood flow so you can ’ t combine it with their heavy hooves and it will some... In any type of soil almost any time of the grass, however if. Is at least 5cm high even a small amount of shade and retains. Is to mow your lawn quite short every year or two can expect a perfect performance with a pH 5.5... Runner grass which is the most difficult lawn seed to establish and will replace the grass.