6 Best Grass Seed for Ohio – 2020 Reviews

Are you in the process of having a great looking lawn to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your new home lawn but you are not sure which is the best grass seed for Ohio?

To ease the person finding guidance, we built this guide that comprises all the essential steps from seeds dropping, selection, watering to mowing the grass in Ohio. 

The best thing about this guide is that it will give an in-depth preview of all the grass species that are compatible with the weather including rain, sleet,  snow or extreme weather conditions.

In short, it will show you the right path to choose the best grass seed for your lawn to get well maintained, healthy, lush green, and eye-catching curb appeal. 

Let’s get started.

Buying guide: How to choose best grass seed for Ohio

Establishing a new lawn or maintaining an old one is not easy as just throwing grass seeds on the patches of bare land. 

Selection of most suitable and best grass seed for the lawn has never been easy without proper guidance. Most people fail in establishing the completely filled yard with lush green grass due to lack of knowledge of proper grass type.

All the grass types have their own unique growth patterns and environmental factors that are well suitable to different geographical areas. 

To choose an optimized grass specie for lawns in Ohio state these are some factors to be considered:

1. Environmental Conditions

Environmental conditions include all the atmosphere as well soil environmental conditions.

As far all grasses love to grow in unique environmental conditions so before choosing any grass seed, note the sunlight duration and soil physical and nutrient status because healthy soil is more resistant to diseases and pests.

Soil properties can be checked with a simple soil test that will determine the pH and NPK composition in the soil.

However, in case of atmospheric conditions, make sure to check how much sun or shade your yards get. As for example, the environmental requirements of the two kinds of grass are:

  • Kentucky bluegrass (sun-loving grass) will not thrive to full potential in the places which gets shade all-day
  • Tall fescue grass has the potential to compete for the wide range of climatic conditions if it is planted alone

So, make sure to get information about the environmental conditions of your yard before choosing any grass seed.

2. Growing Grass in Ohio

The other most important thing to know after environmental conditions is to find out the hardiness zone of your area.

All the regions in the country are classified in USDA Hardiness Zone Map by the lowest average annual temperature. 

When you take a look at the Ohio state in the Hardiness Zone Map, you will notice that it lies in zones 5b to 6b that have average -15 to 0 degrees Fahrenheit temperature.

This state has regions that also lie in transition zone. That transition zone area lies on the line that marks the boundary between cooler and warmer regions. It shows that for these regions you should select grass that could tolerate warmer weather as well as colder winters.

3. Kinds of Grasses

After getting information about the above two factors, now you will see many kinds of grass that can thrive best in these regions. All these grass kinds have their own growth pattern. 

Here is the list of grass types that can grow in Ohio regions:

  • Kentucky bluegrass – winter-hardy grass that commonly found in northern regions of the state
  • Perennial ryegrass – grow fast, ideal to cover the bare patches
  • Tall fescues – more tolerance to shade, low maintenance
  • Fine fescues – grow best on low soil moisture, low fertility, shaded and soils with unfavourable pHs
  • Buffalograss – low maintenance grass, compatible with Ohio’s climate

4. Cool-Season and Warm-Season Grasses

Grasses are mostly classified as warm and cool-season grasses. This broad classification on the basis of seasons denotes the time of active growth. 

As Ohio’s weather is mostly considered as winter, so all the above-mentioned types are selected after deep research for cool-season regions.

The cool-season grasses feature the fine texture that should mow on the high side. The shiny feature of cool-season grasses is that they remain green due to their winter hardy nature and unlike warm-season grasses, they don’t go dormant in summer.

But if you feel heat tolerance issues in cool-season grasses then consider the warm season zoysia grass for warmer regions.

5. Cultivars and Mixtures

As far numerous kinds of grass seeds are available in the market for turf. But each grass has its own plethora of cultivars. 

Companies keep improving the species by improvements and make new cultivars that have more tolerance to moisture or heat stresses. So try to consider the best cultivars for new yards.

The same way grass seeds are sold both as single and mixture of many varieties. The mixture of grass seeds performed well for cool-season grasses. 

These mixtures allow the ease to establish the lawn with various growth patterns and adding aesthetic beauty to the lawn.

Reviews: Best Grass seed for Ohio

1. Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed Kentucky Bluegrass Mix – Kentucky Bluegrass Ohio

Kentucky bluegrass is considered as the most suitable grass for Ohio. it grows fine-textured, high quality, and long-lasting turf with proper management.

Kentucky bluegrass seed by Scotts has the ability to repair itself. 

This grass seed features the full growth potential in full shade and light shade. This grass seed ends up in fine-bladed texture turf.

The great thing of this grass seed is that it has medium drought resistance for warmer regions.

The premium feature of this product is the Exclusive WaterSmart coating that has the ability to absorb more water and protection from diseases.

Mowing Height: Kentucky bluegrass is mowed at 2 ½ inches once in a week during active growth season.

Pros

  • It covers 4660 sq. ft. area of lawn on seeding
  • Provides protection against diseases
  • Long-lasting turf
  • Fine-textured grass

Cons

  • Does not tolerate dense shade
  • Establishment rate is bit slower than others

2. Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed Perennial Ryegrass Mix – Full Sun and Light Shade

Perennial Ryegrass offers the rapid establishment of lawn by its rapid seed germination ability. It has a bunch type growth pattern which triggers to produce the dense turf through tillering.

Scotts Perennial Seed Mix is the premium product for the person who wants to seed perennial grass in Ohio.

This grass offers a low drought resistant and fine-bladed texture that can grow from full sun to lightly shaded areas.

The shiny feature of this seed mix is the WaterSmart PLUS coating which feeds the seedlings with all essential nutrients.

The coated seeds absorb more water to keep moist the seedlings 2x more than uncoated seeds. The coating also helps against disease attacks.

This grass seed is ideal for high traffic areas and erosion control.

Mowing Height: Perennial Ryegrass is mowed at 2 ½ to 3 inches once in a week during the peak growing season.

Pros

  • It covers more than 2900 sq.ft. area of the lawn during seeding the new grass
  • 4in1 WaterSmart Plus coating protects against diseases
  • Absorbs more moisture to keep seedling moist more time
  • Ideal grass seed for full sun to light shade areas

Cons

  • Has low drought resistance so needs to water more often to keep lush green

3. Pennington Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue Grass Seed

Tall fescue grass is an ideal grass type for the person searching for low maintenance grass. Along with low maintenance, it also features better tolerance to insects and disease attacks.

Pennington tall fescue grass seed grows well in full sun to medium shaded areas and with low fertility.

By proper management it ends up in durable, lighter green, and drought-resistant lawn.

The premium feature of this grass type is that it holds up well under foot traffic.

Pennington’s Penkoted technology improved the protection of this grass seed from deadly fungus.

Mowing Height: Tall fescue is mowed at 3 to 3 ½ inches one time per week during active growth period.

Pros

  • Low maintenance grass seed
  • Produce lighter green and coarse-textured grass that holds up the traffic damage
  • Grows in full sun to medium shaded areas
  • It covers 6250 sq.ft. per pack on seeding new lawn
  • Germination time is good as 14 days

Cons

  • Some people not like coarse texture nature of this grass

4. Scotts Turf Builder Fine Fescue Grass Seed Sun and Shade Mix

Fine Fescue Grass seed by Scotts offers fine-leaved turf grass that grows well in shaded areas, low moisture and low fertility.

It is specially designed for the dense shaded areas. It has medium to high drought resistance.

Scotts offers the WaterSmart plus coating in this grass seed that helps the seeds to absorb more water and protection from diseases.

The coating has nutrients embedded in it that feeds the grass seeds at the starting of seedlings.

This is the most versatile seed mix by Scotts that grows in extreme conditions of dense shade to full sun.

It is aggressively spread on bare patches for repairing the lawn.

Mowing Height: Fine Fescues are mowed at 3 to 3 ½ inches once a week during active growth season.

Pros

  • Fine-leaved turfgrass
  • High drought resistance
  • Ideal grass to grow on pH problematic soils
  • Feeds the seedling with nutrients
  • Grows well in both full sun and dense shade

Cons

  • Performs great if mixed with any other grass type

5. Outsidepride Drought Tolerant Buffalo Lawn Grass Seed

This grass seed is a premium choice for the person searching for a drought-tolerant grass type in Ohio state. It can grow in vast USDA zones from 3-11.

This is a rapidly growing grass that can grow up to 6 inches if unmowed.

Beside drought tolerance, it also features low maintenance to ease you in your daily busy routine.

Buffalograss has excellent stolon development to boost the spread of turf on ground. 

It is a non-GMO product by Outsidepride and offers better establishment in drought areas.

Its heirlooms are sown at a rate of 2-3 lbs per 1000 sq. ft. and watered enough to keep soil moist and it will last in the rough-textured turf.

It is used for lawn grass, parks and golf courses.

Mowing Height: Mostly mowed at 3 inches every week during active growth periods.

Pros

  • Supreme product for drought problematic regions
  • Low maintenance grass
  • Rapid spreading on the ground
  • Non-GMO product
  • Used for lawn grass and golf courses

Cons

  • Rough-in texture

6. Jonathan Green 10322 Black Beauty Ultra Grass Seed Mix

Many industry experts recommend growing the grass seed mixture for the better establishment of lawn due to variable growing patterns.

This ultra grass seed mix by Jonathan Green is the premium choice by lawndesire experts to grow the mixture of perennial ryegrass, tall fescues, and Kentucky bluegrass mix all in one pack.

This grass seed grows well in clay to sandy soils and do have the ability to grow in full sun to partial shade.

The shiny feature of this product is the presence of an invisible waxy coating on seed that prevents the disease attacks and helps to preserve more moisture to tolerate drought.

This product contains natural insect resistant grass seed mix to ease the development of turf without any problem.

Mowing Height: As it is a mixture of grass seed so mowing height is set as desire but recommended by our experts is 2 ½ to 3 inches.

Pros

  • Covers 2800 sq. ft. area on seeding
  • Possesses a diversity of growth pattern grass seed to help the establishment
  • Resistance against insects
  • Preserves moisture by the presence of a coating on seeds

Cons

  • Not suitable for densely shaded areas 

Steps to establishing a new lawn

Throwing grass seed on the bare land doesn’t mean that they will sprout on watering and change into lush green lawn. However, the whole process needs proper management as:

  • Firstly, the land is prepared, a soil test is done and adds fertilizer if needed
  • It is beneficial to do seeding during soil aeration 
  • Doing overseeding and lawn aeration with aerators will help to establish the lawn in much better way by allowing more seeds to fall into holes created by aerators

Successful seeding also requires the following to get started and to thrive:

  • Timely fertilization: Timely application of fertilizer has much more benefit than applying blindly without knowing the grass status
  • Watering: Newly seeded grass needs watering daily for the first three weeks, then every other day for next week and after that twice a week 
  • Care: To keep the lawn lush green and thriving a proper care and management practices need to follow to keep them free of disease. Keep checking the fungus attacks, if any found use fungicides for lawn immediately to stop the spread 

Perennial ryegrass vs Kentucky bluegrass

Perennial ryegrassKentucky bluegrass
– Fine-textured
– Bunch-type growth habit
– Rapid seed germination and establishments
– Resistant to cold and diseases than bluegrass
– More drought-resistant then bluegrass
– Optimal mowing height is 2-2 1/2″ inches
– Maintenance, pH and fertility requirements same to bluegrass
– Fine-textured
– Produces rhizomes (underground stems)
– Slow seed germination and establishment
– Capable to resist the extreme cold and disease attacks
– Less drought-resistant the ryegrass
– Optimal mowing height is 2-2 1/2″ inches
– Maintenance, pH and fertility requirements same to ryegrass

Tall fescue vs Kentucky bluegrass

Tall fescueKentucky bluegrass
– Coarse textured
– Low maintenance grass
– Good tolerance to insects and disease
– Deep-rooted nature
– Not cold-tolerant
– Quick germination and establishment
– Tolerates drought
– Optimal mowing height is 3-3 ½ inches
– Fine-textured
– More maintenance grass
– Capable to resist disease attacks
– Produces rhizomes (underground stems)
– Cold-tolerant
– Slow germination and establishment
– During the dry period, it becomes dormant and loses color
– Optimal mowing height is 2-2 1/2″ inches

Ryegrass vs Fescue

RyegrassFescue
– Fine-textured
– Bunch-type growth habit
– Rapid seed germination and establishment
– Less resistant to cold and diseases than bluegrass
– More drought-resistant then bluegrass
– Optimal mowing height is 2-2 1/2″ inches
– Maintenance, pH and fertility requirements same to bluegrass
– Coarse-texture grass
– Deep-rooted system to tolerate drought
– Germination and establishment rates are high but less then ryegrass
– Tolerate the disease attack but not a cold-resistant
– Drought resistant grass
– Optimal mowing height is 3-3 ½ inches
– Low maintenance requirements, can grow on pH problematic soils

When to aerate lawn in Ohio

It is an important step to aerate the lawn at the proper time to keep the grass healthy and green while improving life. 

The best time to aerate the lawns with cool-season grasses is in spring or fall. Try to do aeration at the start of both seasons.

If going to do spring aeration then do it before the establishment of spring weeds germination to prevent weeds. Because spring weeds start germination in late March or early April in Ohio.

FAQs

What is the best time to plant grass seed in Ohio?

To plant grass seed in Ohio, late summer/early fall is the optimum time to seed the cool-season grasses. 

In these seasons the air and soil temperatures completely favour the planting and influence seed germination.

When should I reseed my lawn in Ohio?

The optimum time to overseed the lawn in Ohio in the early fall. Because at this time, new grass will get three months’ time to establish before the onset of cold summer.

This overseeded grass will boost the growth in the coming spring when the soil temperature warms to 55 degrees.

What is the fastest growing grass seed for Ohio?

Perennial Ryegrass is the fastest growing grass for Ohio. it germinates in 7-10 days.

While Kentucky Bluegrass takes 14-21 days and Tall Fescue takes 10-21 days.

What type of grass stays green all year round?

Kentucky Bluegrass is the cool-season grass that stays green whole year-round. It can withstand the winter months with harsh cold conditions.

Will grass seed grow if not covered?

Yes, grass seed will grow if not covered but the only thing to note here is the proper fertilization and watering.

Can I use too much grass seed?

Actually too much overseeding doesn’t remain useful to produce a lusher lawn. However, you need to get some knowledge about when to do overseeding. As by too much overseeding, buds may struggle and fail to sprout more. 

best grass seed for ohio

Final Verdict

For the better establishment of the lawn, the selection of the right grass type is too much necessary. Only the right type of grass will add aesthetic beauty to the lawn and cover the whole patch with lush green turf.

Without proper seed and fertilization, the lawn will be a disturb looking barren land with patches of grass somewhere.

Hopefully, this guide helps you in choosing the best grass seed for Ohio.

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