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Grass Identification Terms:
A key characteristic that will aid you in grass identification is Growth habit.
habit describes the type of shoot growth and also determines a species
ability to spread out from the parent plant to form a lawn. There are
three basic types: Bunch-type, rhizomatous and stoloniferous.
Bunch-type grasses spread exclusively by the production
of tillers. They will form a uniform lawn with sufficient seeding
rates. When seeding rates are too low, small clumps are formed creating
a non-uniform lawn. Common cool season lawn grasses with bunch-type
growth are perennial ryegrass, tall fescue, hard fescue, and chewings
Stoloniferous grasses spread by above-ground, lateral stems called stolons,
that creep over the ground. New shoots grow along the stolons as they
spread. Stoloniferous lawns appear to their aerial shoots growing
laterally along the ground. Bermudagrass and St. Augustinegrass are
examples of stoloniferous lawns.
Rhizomatous grasses spread by below ground stems known
as rhizomes. The rhizome terminate and form new shoots at positions away
from the mother plant. As these new shoots mature they will also
produce rhizomes that form new shoots creating a uniform lawn. Kentucky
bluegrass is a common rhizomatous lawn.