Which turfgrass species grow best in shady areas?
A key to successfully growing grass in shady areas is to select the proper turfgrass species for the site. Kentucky bluegrass is the most widely grown turfgrass in Iowa. However, most Kentucky bluegrass varieties do not perform well in shady areas. The fine-leaf fescues (creeping red fescue, hard fescue, chewings fescue, etc.) are the most shade tolerant of the cool-season turfgrasses. When attempting to establish grass in a shady area, select a grass seed mix that contains a high percentage (75 percent or more) of the fine-leaf fescues. Late summer (mid-August to early September) and April are the best times to establish grass in shady areas.