turfgrass

Bahiagrass

Bahiagrass, Paspalum notatum, is a warm-season, sod-forming grass used in pastures and lawns with two commonly used cultivars with contrasting chromosome numbers, 2n=20 for diploid ‘Pensacola’ and 2n=40 for ‘Argentine.’ The latter is also apomictic so all plants in a population can be somatic clones. Bahia performs well as turf throughout southeastern United States in low-maintenance lawns, highways, parks, and utility areas such as roadsides, especially large landscapes with full direct sun. Bahiagrass originated in the New World, probably southern South America, although it was widely distributed in Latin America throughout the 1800s. The species is tall and coarse-textured and may be objectionable in lawns because of tall (74 cm) seedheads and frequent need for mowing during the peak of the flowering season. But its drought avoidance and wild look make it esthetically compatible with native plant landscapes. Bahiagrass can be aggressive and weedy in conservation areas. There has been considerable expansion in east Asia.