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What’s the Fastest Growing Grass? (Australian Guide)

When it’s time to establish a new lawn area in your garden, it’s tempting to choose a type of grass that will grow as fast as possible.

There are many varieties of grass that you can choose from in Australia. Whether you want to establish a new lawn or prefer some natural landscaping with native grasses, fast growth can be a deciding factor.

Here are some of the fastest-growing grasses in Australia and what they’re best suited for.

Fast-growing lawn grasses

When it’s time to establish a new lawn area in your garden, it’s tempting to be impatient and want a type of grass that will grow as fast as possible.

While you do have some excellent choices for this, you also want to consider other factors such as sun exposure, maintenance and water requirements.

Here are some of the fastest-growing lawn grasses.

Kikuyu

Kikuyu Grass | Lawn care

There is a range of different kikuyu grasses available that are extremely fast-growing. This is the perfect grass for sunny areas and does really well in areas that are hot in summer and have high humidity.

It’s also the perfect choice for high-traffic areas, especially if you have kids and pets.

However, due to its fast growth habit, it will require mowing on a frequent basis, even weekly in the warmer months. This grass can also become quite invasive and will spread into surrounding garden beds if you don’t apply measures to contain it. 

Couch

Couch is another popular lawn grass that is famed for its fast growth. It’s a fine-leaf grass that looks great and is soft to the touch. It’s also perfect for high-traffic areas.

However, this grass variety is fairly high-maintenance. It will require weekly mowing in the warmer months but lots of fertilising to maintain its lovely green colour and vigour.

Couch is also considered quite invasive as it can grow aggressively with its underground rhizomes and ground-hugging stolons.

RELATED: Couch vs Kikuyu grass

Buffalo

Buffalo Grass | Lawn care

Buffalo is last on our list of the fastest-growing lawn grasses, however, it is much lower maintenance than the other varieties.

If you want a compromise between speed of growth and the level of maintenance required, you can’t go past many of the soft-leaf Buffalo grasses now available.

Another advantage of this grass type is that it does have good shade tolerance. This needs to be considered if you’re planning to grow a lawn in an area that doesn’t receive full sun for most of the day. 

The newer varieties of Buffalo are also hard-wearing, so they’re perfect for high-traffic areas. Consider cultivars such as Sapphire, Prestige and Palmetto.

Fast-growing native grasses

If you want to create a more natural environment in your garden, you might want to consider some of our fast-growing native grasses. These have so many varied uses in your garden and some can even be used to create a low-traffic lawn.

Australian native grasses also make excellent border plants along driveways and paths. They are generally low maintenance and help to suppress weeds.

Here’s a good selection of fast-growing native grasses to consider.

Kangaroo Grass (Themeda triandra)

Themeda triandra Kangaroo Grass | Lawn care
Themeda triandra / Photo by Bernard Dupont / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Kangaroo grass has become quite popular around the country as an alternative to traditional lawn grasses. It can be grown in a range of soil types and will tolerate both full sun and part shade.

This native grass can be mowed but cultivars from coastal varieties require very little mowing. During most of the year, the leafy blades of kangaroo grass are light green to grey in colour but these can take on a lovely red tinge in winter.

Wallaby Grass (Austrodanthonia spp.)

Austrodanthonia caespitosa Wallaby grass | Lawn care
Austrodanthonia caespitosa / Photo by Harry Rose / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Wallaby grass is a slightly lower-growing native grass than kangaroo grass. It is also commonly used as a lawn substitute. It will grow in both full sun and part shade. 

This native grass species is drought-tolerant, however, it may die back a little during extended periods of dry weather. Therefore, if you want to maintain its mid-green colour, adequate watering is recommended.

This native grass can also be mowed but if you choose not to, you’ll be rewarded with pretty white flowers in summer.

Rice Grass or Weeping Meadow Grass (Microlaena stipoides)

Rice grass has become quite popular as a lawn substitute in South Australia. However, it should grow well in most parts of the country. It can handle most soil types in either full sun or part shade.

This native grass species will also tolerate light traffic and can handle kids and dogs playing on it. However, the seeds can prove to be an irritant for dogs.

To solve this problem, it’s recommended that you give the grass a mow before the seeds have time to mature. 

Photo of author

Annette Hird

Annette Hird is a gardening expert with many years of experience in a range of gardening related positions. She has an Associate Diploma of Applied Science in Horticulture and has worked in a variety of production nurseries, primarily as a propagator. She has also been responsible for a large homestead garden that included lawn care, fruit trees, roses and many other ornamental plants. More recently, Annette has concentrated on improving the garden landscape of the homes that she has lived in and focused a lot of energy on growing edible plants as well. She now enjoys sharing her experience and knowledge with others by writing articles about all facets of gardening and growing plants.

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