Many people considering buying a new Soft Leaf Buffalo lawn are doing so for it's well known shade tolerance properties, but with so many different Buffalo lawn types available, it can be a real struggle to find the best Buffalo lawn for shade conditions.
While the wide leaf blade of Buffalo grass is responsible for it's high shade tolerance, each of the different lawn varieties can perform very differently under the same shade conditions.
While many people may be led to believe that all buffalo grasses are created equal in shade tolerance or other important traits, new research proves facts to be very different from many grass company claims about the true performance of their grass brands.
We believe shade tolerance of buffalo grass to be a very important characteristic, because after all… buffalo grass is a grass best suited to partially shaded environments. So in this respect, if we are buying buffalo grass for shade, then we want to be choosing a buffalo with the best shade tolerance possible.
While these shade trials do go all the way up to levels of 90% shade, we do not recommend growing any grass type in these levels of shade, as the overall turf quality will continue to diminish as shade increases to intolerable levels.
As always, for ease of usefulness, we've included only the more well known and more popular buffalo grass types in this review.
The highest numbers represent Buffalo grass in the best condition in shade.
The percentage numbers represent the amount of shade in the test, for example… 30% Shade, 50% Shade and so forth.
Conclusion - Best Buffalo Grass In Shade
Sapphire is proven to be the best buffalo grass in shade.
In fact, Sapphire won consistently across every level of shade in these trials. Even more proving in these trials is when we look at these numbers, they are all consistent and without any anomalies, and its from this consistency that we can trust in these results.
Researchers even made special note that only Sapphire and one American buffalo which is not available in Australia - were the ONLY TWO buffalo grasses which were up to an appropriate level of quality in ALL SHADE LEVELS after 10 weeks.
So how should we interpret the rest of this data when it comes to choosing a buffalo grass for shade? Lets have a quick look…
Firstly, if we have a fair bit of shade, then Sapphire would be our first and only choice.
However, if shade is of less moderate concern, lets say in the 30% to 50% range, then any of these buffalo grasses will perform very well under such conditions, after all… they are all buffalo grasses, and shade tolerance is their specialty.
So if shade is of moderate concern, then it would be better to determine the best buffalo grass for your home based on other quality factors, rather than just shade, and choose Sapphire if shade is of very high concern.
Buffalo Grass Research:
Independent Buffalo Research was conducted by HAL and Qld Dept of Primary Industries, and sponsored by all major buffalo grass license holders in Australia... Read More...
How Did We Work Out The Shade Tolerance Data:
We took all 4 test results for buffalo shade tolerance from the single plot site where these studies were undertaken, which was at Redlands Research Station, Queensland, and then averaged these results to provide true test result figures.