December is already here! We’re still getting a few surprising hot days here and there in Austin, but that won’t stop us from talking about the timely subject matter of what makes grass go dormant in cold weather.
Perennial vs Annual
Understanding if your grass is perennial or annual is important when grass typically begins to go dormant in colder weather. If you have annual grass (grass that lives for one year and then dies) then it’s likely your grass isn’t dormant at all, just dead. If your grass is a perennial grass (the type that is designed to continue living for years) such as the popular Bermudagrass, your grass, provided it’s healthy, is likely just dormant. Don’t panic if your grass is turning a bit brown when the temperature is dropping.
Grass can typically go dormant when the weather drops below 42.8 degree fahrenheit (or 6 degrees celsius.). Because it’s the fall, we’re seeing lots of grass easing up on its over-the-ground growth. This is because healthy grass may be growing where it counts – in the roots!
This root growth will help your grass prepare for the winter. If temperatures dip below that 42 degree status, we’ll see above-the-ground grass die.
Don’t forget to clean up any debris on your grass as we head into and then deal with the inevitable cold of the winter. Anything covering your grass during the cold isn’t going to help your dormant grass. Smothered grass can cause damage to the rest of the lawn through a variety of methods including causing lawn disease.
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