Buffalo has a reputation for being a difficult seed to grow. There are many lawn owners who have heard the noise, and are fearful of trying to germinate the turf from seed, despite the obvious money saving perk.
Thankfully, McKays have worked to produce a Buffalo Grass Seed mix that allows the positives of the variety to not get outweighed by the negatives.
The Ingrained Cons
For years lawn owners have heard the same thing – “don’t bother growing Buffalo from seed.” It’s a hard reputation that was at times deserved, but is also proving quite hard to shake. Buffalo as a stand-alone grass has a few things that work against it when starting from seed.
Historically, the returns from sowing Buffalo were minimal, and you’d need either a whole heap of seed to be sown or a few sessions of over-seeding to get yourself a half dense or half good-looking lawn. On top of this, germination takes 3-4 weeks, which is a long time to have your backyard out of action. Patience is very much needed.
It also needs fairly warm and sunny conditions to get the best start in life, which means choosing the right time to sow can be a tricky proposition in some parts of Australia. Temperatures of 25+ degrees and 6-8 hours of direct sunlight are required to give the lawn the best start to life.
Because of these restrictions, Buffalo has more commonly been grown from runners, and sold by the roll or in the form of plug trays, avoiding the seed establishment troubles previously encountered. The upshot of this is that it’s a particularly costly way of getting your new lawn. As anyone with Buffalo will tell you, it’s not the cheapest way to redecorate your backyard.
The McKays’ Solution
So you’ve got your heart set on a good looking patch of Buffalo, but your hip pocket is kindly asking you to stick it up your jumper. McKays’ Buffalo Grass Seed may well be the answer.
McKays’ Buffalo Grass Seed gets around the traditional troubles with Buffalo seed by being a mix. It is 50 percent Buffalo, while using the fantastic companion grass of Turf Type Perennial Ryegrass for another 40 percent. The last 10 percent of the mix is a slow release fertiliser.
While the germination of the Buffalo will still take 4 weeks, the Ryegrass will get going more quickly, allowing the lawn to establish itself more rapidly. McKays has also worked hard to produce a Buffalo seed with a far greater germination rate, with a guaranteed minimum germination of 85 percent. This means a one-time sow to get the dense, beautiful lawn you’re hoping for.
The Ryegrass also covers up the Buffalo’s deficiency in shaded areas. If a tree or structure is blocking the light on parts of your patch, the Ryegrass will continue growing where the Buffalo may fail.
The mix is able to be grown pretty much anywhere in Australia, but is most suited to the warmer climates. As is the case with a pure Buffalo seed, if you’re in Southern Victoria or Tasmania, it may be difficult to find an appropriate stretch of warm 25+ degree temperatures to get your grass going. Areas with 400-900mm of annual rainfall are ideal, and direct sunlight is a big positive.
There’s no need to be put off by nay-sayers who tell you the only way to get Buffalo is to go pre-grown. If you stick to some basic principles for growing from seed and treat your new turf well, you’ll be sure to have a beautiful patch of turf without the normally associated price.
For more information on their Buffalo Grass Seed, contact the friendly team over at McKays.