Fescue vs Bermuda is forever a debate between gardeners and most lawn owners, and we are here to help you decide which one is for you.

Comparison of Fescue and Bermuda

Each grass species has unique characteristics that say a lot about where and how they can be grown, and we are here to present them to you in our article.

Let’s find the differences between the two grass species to help you pick your favorite grass. 

Features Fescus Bermuda
Growing Season Cool-season Warm-season
Growing temperature (Fahrenheit)  Seventy to seventy-five degrees Ninety-five to hundred degrees
Height Four feet Twelve inches
Tolerance  Cold and shade tolerant Heat, salt and drought tolerant
Propagation Seed or sod Stolons and rhizomes

What Are the Difference Between Fescue and Bermuda?

The main difference between Fescue and Bermuda grass is their growing season. Fescue is a cool season grass, and the best time to plant is when the temperature is between 70 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature range allows the seeds to grow in a stress, heat, and disease-free environment.  

Both the grass types differ in propagation, too. Fescue spreads through seeds or sods; since it is a cool-season grass, it does not tolerate heat, salt, and drought but shows tolerance for cold and shade and is mostly used in the transition zone. Whereas, Bermuda spreads through above-ground and under-ground stems, known as stolons and rhizomes.

While both the grass species look beautiful together, it is best not to grow them together. Bermuda has an aggressive and invasive growth rate that increases with temperature. This characteristic suffocates the tall fescue grass, and it eventually dies out.

Specifications of Fescue Grass

The specifications of fescue grass are that it has a carpet grass characteristic, and medium to dark color foliage. It is also known for its deep rooting system, and how this grass would thrive in spring and grow in a healthy way. 

This grass is native to Europe and can tolerate heavy foot traffic but takes a long time to recover from. It loses its lush green color in the summer. Fescue lawns thin out after summer, so you must re-seed your lawn in the fall.

– Carpet Grass Characteristics

It has wide use in erosion sites, slopes, roadsides, and golf courses. It is a suitable candidate to bring life to your front and backyards. Furthermore, it likes to be left high, so if you are looking for a grass carpet, there are better choices for lawn grass.

The grass grows slowly, making it an ideal grass to be grown in parks. You need not worry about mowing it often as it does not have an invasive growth rate, even though its seeds do not take long to germinate.

People also love to grow grass to show off their commercial landscapes. It is a low-maintenance grass that makes landscapes look attractive for longer without you having to worry about lawn care. Moreover, tall fescue can be used as hay, it is more appropriate for grazing purposes.

Characteristics of Fescue Grass

In other words, the grass is grown for more decorative purposes than functional ones, because it can be used for residential and commercial uses. Since fescue has long leaf blades, it is grown in playgrounds for its bouncing effects. This bounciness minimizes the risk of injuries. It looks great around all the swings of the playground.

– Medium to Dark Foliage

The grass is the toughest of all the other types of grass. It is mostly medium to dark green, flat, and has veins running on the upper side of the leaf blades and rough sand-like margins. It is wear-and-tear grass, so you do not have to worry about your lawn getting damaged because of the kids running on it, as it has a tolerance for foot trafficking, although it would take time to recover from the stress.

The recommended mowing height for this grass would be when it reaches two to four inches, but don’t worry any further, because the foliage will still look so well. In order to obtain healthy growth, remember that it thrives in acidic, fertile, well-draining soil but adapts to other soil types. Furthermore, it is less susceptible to fungal infections than its fellow grass.

– Deep Rooting System

Fescue has a deep and extensive root system, often as deep as six feet, which means you do not have to water or feed it often. Even though it is a cool-season grass, it can tolerate heat and drought to some extent.

Since the grass is bunch-type, it does not form thatch frequently. On another note, when you subject it to core aeration, it pulls out the plug from the soil, creating a better pathway for water and nutrients to reach the soil.

– Thrives in Spring 

If you miss this growing period when growing the Fescue grass, you need not wait for the next growing season to plant the seeds. You can easily do so in spring when the temperature is around 60 degrees Fahrenheit which is chilly enough for the plant. In addition, they will germinate well within five to 10 days, and they will grow within a couple of weeks.

This is the type of grass that will grow quite tall and reaches a maximum height of four feet, making it a great option for shadow grass. Moreover, with its beautiful foliage, in spring time, you will have such a nice lawn, where your kids will be able to play on it. 

Specifications Bermuda Grass 

The Bermuda grass specifications are that it is most suitable for tropical regions, and it is prone to tolerate high foot trafficking, due to the fast recovery it will have. Moreover, it is easy to maintain, as it will grow long blades, but it is not pocket-friendly grass. 

It is native to the tropical African regions, takes heavy traffic quite happily, and recovers quickly from stress. The species is rather invasive and enters the areas of your landscape where it should not be, for example, your vegetable gardens. It is easy to control its growth if you detect it in its early stages.

– Suitable for Tropical Regions

This is the type of grass that is known to be a warm-season perennial grass that comes yearly and shows active growth through late spring and summer, tolerating the heat and humidity. This warm-season grass, has great heat, salt, and drought tolerance, making it suitable for tropical regions.

The given grass species have a flexible nature, meaning they can survive in the growing season other than their own, and this is a beneficial aspect because it will stay fresh looking. For example, both of them can survive in Texas, which already is a Bermuda-friendly growing zone, but you can grow there too, due to its tolerant nature. 

– Tolerates High Foot Trafficking

Since grass can repair fairly quickly from stress and injuries; it is a great option to be used on golf courses. It is a low-growing grass species that can easily grow back to its height in little to no time. The given is an advantageous reason for you; if you have children, and you would like them to spend time on this grass, the latter won’t perish or weaken. 

On another note, the grass can even be used as hay since Bermuda hay is made from Bermuda grass. The grass is mostly planted in spring and is allowed to grow till fall until it can be harvested as hay.

– Easy to Maintain

The grass is mostly used as turf grass and pasture grass. It is great for lawn owners that like to keep their lawns even and maintained. The species forms a dense mat and can be used to cover bare patches of your lawn. 

Characteristics of Bermuda Grass

It is also used in sports fields, and its deep root system binds the soil, which makes it appropriate for controlling erosion. Furthermore, it is grown on golf courses, lawns, and arenas, and the development will be quite simple to get through, for the end user; hence it won’t be troublesome. 

– Long Blades

The grass has fine and textured blades that are eight inches long. Although, it is also a low-growing grass and grows up to a maximum of 12 inches, making it more suitable to be used as a turfgrass; although it does have long blades it will feature a beautifully manicured lawn if you decide to invest in it.

This grass has long internodes on its stems and is darker than most other grass types. It is a warm-season perennial that is resistant to drought and can tolerate high heat. You would be surprised how quickly it germinates, even under the most stressful conditions.

It is a full sun lover and does not tolerate shade by even a bit. Its stolons, rhizomes, and leaves grow more with the increase in light intensity. Low light results in narrow leaves with elongated stems and weak rhizomes. The grass species has a good root system; even lengthy drought periods cannot stop it from producing robust roots, and this is why it will grow in nearly every kind of soil as long as it is well-drained.

– Costly

Bermuda may be less expensive when used as artificial turf but is the pricey one for real grass. It is mostly grown through stolons or rhizomes, which are comparatively more expensive than grass seeds.

The reason behind the grass being costly is that it is a resilient one regarding foot trafficking, and it will tolerate different temperatures and still thrive. 


1. What Are the Differences between Fescue vs Bermuda vs Zoysia?

Zoysia is a similar-looking grass species to Fescue and Bermuda. People often confuse the three because of a few mutual characteristics. However, it is imperative to note that all of these grass species have different survival needs, meaning you cannot plant them as substitutes for each other.


As shown in the Fescue vs Bermuda grass review, both grass species have a fair set of similarities and differences. The main difference lies in their growing season and tall Fescue being more budget-friendly than Bermuda.

So, you can opt for tall Fescue if the budget is your main concern. However, there are many other characteristics to consider, like its growing season and height. That’s why we recommend you try both of these species and let your aesthetic and gardening sense guide you.




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