Winter Grass in the Desert

People relocating to the Valley of the Sun often wonder about having a lawn. Yes, there are people who have lawns here in the desert. What surprises many people, though, is that we have summer lawns and winter lawns.

Why do we have winter grass and summer grass in Phoenix?

The desert climate in Phoenix means that the winter and summer are very different. In the summer, we use Bermuda grass since it tolerates our triple digit temperatures.

 Bermuda grass is dormant during our winter months. For this reason, if you want your lawn to be green all year, you have to plant winter rye grass.

When should I plant winter rye grass?

Winter rye grass is usually planted in October. A general rule is that when the temperatures at night are consistently around the 60°F range, you are ready to plant.

How do you plant winter rye grass?

First you must scalp and dethatch the summer grass. That means that you must cut it back and thin it to allow room for your new grass. The planting of the rye grass in the winter is called overseeding, because you are planting rye seed over the existing Bermuda.


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