Buffalo Grass - Spanish Grass - Grama Grass?
In Spain and the Mediterranean the most popular grass which is a grass referred to by a lot of people as Buffalo Grass. It is also known as Grama Grass.
Unfortunately these common names change from country to country. For example "Grama" is Spanish for grass, so little mileage there in identifying the grass type. Also the type of grass referred to as Buffallo Grass changes depending on which country you are in.
However it is safe to say that what the Spanish call Grama or Grama Basta (Buffalo Grass) is popular for one reason. It is the most tolerant grass for clay and alkaline soils and therefore will put up with very little soil preparation. But although drought resistant, it suffers from one or two major drawbacks - it goes brown in the Winter, produces lots of thatch and is very coarse to walk on !
Almost zero soil prep is an unfortunate basis for choosing the right type of grass for your requirements, but gardening professionals will always sway towards less work for themselves.
The reality is that a lot of the cost of a new lawn is actually soil prep. Once this stage has been addressed then many types of Spanish grass types can be planted with long term success.
Buffalo Grass - Description
Buffalo grass is probably the most coarse grass in Spain. The stems resemble a childs' straw with pairs of 2" leaves every inch or so along the stem. It creeps and is coarse underfoot. It cannot be grown by seed, so sprigs or plugs have to be bought, but it is green, tolerates some shade and is drought and heat resistant.
What is the alternative?
Well, there is a spectacular grass that stays green all year round and looks very similar to Grama or Bufallo, but it does require a moderate amount of soil prep. Once this has been done then the world is your oyster.
We call it "Med Green" and in fact we sell two types of this grass one is the natural, common sturdy and drought resistant variety and the other is smaller leafed, slower growing variety (Med Green Compact).
See our: Lawn Grass Types page for Med Green details.