Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass: Which Should You Pick?

Although there are some similarities between Crabgrass and Bermuda grass, they still differ in many terms. One may appeal to you more than the other. The most significant difference is that Bermuda grass is a top choice of lawn grass. Meanwhile, Crabgrass is an annoying species that develops quickly. This article discusses the distinctions between Bermuda grass vs Crabgrass and the benefits and drawbacks of both for your lawn.

More to read: Comparison between Bermuda Grass And Fescue

What Is Bermuda Grass?

Bermudagrass is native to subtropical and tropical regions. This species seems more susceptible to cold than some other warm-season plants.

As a result, you can’t grow it far north. The grass requires full, direct sunlight and adequate drainage.

It tolerates heat, moisture, and salt effectively. Moreover, this turf can withstand drought well.

The roots will keep within 6 inches of the topsoil for the most part, but they can penetrate as far as six feet underground if necessary. The extensive root system provides environmental stress tolerance.

The grass grows low to the earth and spreads quickly by stolons above the ground and rhizomes underneath the ground.

The leaves are smooth with a medium texture. The tiny hairs at the base give it a luxuriant touch on bare feet.

During the growth period, the leaves turn dark green, but after the first frost, they will be brown. In frost-free areas, though, it may remain green all year.

More to read: Why Is Bermuda Grass Turning Brown?

These grasses can form a beautiful lawn - Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

These grasses can form a beautiful lawn

What Is Crabgrass?

Crabgrass is an abundance of probably the world’s fastest-growing and most troublesome weed. This species annoys homeowners since it appears to be nearly hard to remove.

In the United States, there are two prevalent species of grass, neither of which has any practical application. They’re just weeds that take over flower gardens, lawns, and farms.

The grass spreads broadly and spreads low to the ground, with some nodes on its stems that take root anywhere they rest.

Fortunately, the root system is shallow and simple to remove. On the other hand, pulling it up is a hopeless fight since they may grow by spilling seeds.

You can find smooth black leaves up to five inches long on mature plants. The plants also form unattractive clumps that bloom in big, thick bunches.

This weed may be annoying to you - Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

This weed may be annoying to you

Differences Between Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

There are many points to check when comparing the two types of grass. We will break them into different factors so that you can follow them easily.

Landscape

We use Crabgrass for athletic fields and places with extensive foot traffic, such as sidewalks, since it can withstand pressure without tearing.

Bermuda grass comes with a thicker blade, making it more resilient to weed killer. Crabgrass, on the other hand, soaks up weed killer more quickly.

Appearance

Crabgrass has a fine blade structure and a uniform texture. This dark green grass provides lawns with a consistent appearance. Meanwhile, Bermuda is soft due to its flat, wide blades.

Depending on the stage of development, the color changes from green to brown. Bermudagrass has the advantage of remaining green even throughout the winter months.

Aggressiveness

These plants are both vigorous and can cause problems in the landscape.

Bermuda may be invasive due to its tendency to spread. If not managed by edging, it will expand from a lawn into beds.

It’s tough to eliminate this species when it grows into areas where it’s not ideal, such as turf made up of other grasses or garden beds.

Crabgrass flourishes in harsh environments, allowing it to expand even while other plants suffer.

Its seeds, though, require light to develop. Therefore it may struggle to establish itself in deep turf or thickly planted beds.

The grasses are vigorous - Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

The grasses are vigorous

Water requirement

Since the roots of Crabgrass are close to the dirt, they can dry fast and demand moderate irrigation.

On the other hand, Bermuda demands more water to grow quicker and nurture deeper.

Growth habits

Bermuda grass clusters up efficiently and needs less mowing. It has broader blades, which keep it green even in the wintertime.

Crabgrass develops at a quicker rate. It has a dark green color and can endure intense foot traffic since its roots are close to the ground, which allows them to drain quickly.

To keep this species in good shape, supply it with moderate watering and mowing once a week.

Fertilizer requirement

Bermuda has broad blades that collect less fertilizer. It readily absorbs nutrients. On the other hand, Crabgrass with fine blades needs more fertilizer to thrive.

More to read: Best Fertilizer For Bermuda Grass

Weed resistance

The broad blades of Bermuda make it resistant to weed. It prevents the seeds of other plants from sprouting in the soil around it.

Crabgrass has tiny, delicate blades that readily collect weed killers. People often use this method to eliminate the unwanted growth of this weed.

Pet’s friendliness

Bermuda appears to be friendlier to pets. Meanwhile, many gardeners report that Crabgrass is harmful to their pets.

This annoying weed doesn’t offer a cozy environment for the pets because its sharp edges may slash the paws of cats and dogs.

This factor is important for pet owners - Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

This factor is important for pet owners

Grooming requirements

Bermuda blades are harsh and broad. Hence, you need to groom the lawn every week to make sure that it looks good all the time.

On the other hand, Crabgrass grows in clumps so that you can mow them together quickly. Hence, the weed requires less grooming.

Shade tolerance

Bermuda does not grow well in the shadow, and Crabgrass requires a lot of direct sunshine to thrive. Its roots are close to the surface, which causes them to dry out rapidly.

If you want a thriving lawn with both of them, keep the soil wet enough for them to flourish.

More to read: Bermuda Grass Grow In Shade?

The grasses prefer sunshine - Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass

The grasses prefer sunshine

Varieties

Bermuda comes in more than 50 distinct varieties all over the world. The two main categories are seeded and hybrid grass.

Seeds reproduce the seeded variety. The grain spreads over the ground once the mature plant releases seeds.

Meanwhile, the hybrid grass is the result of crossbreeding. It also produces thick grass clumps with slender, green leaves.

You can learn more about those varieties of Bermudagrass from this video:

And how many varieties of Crabgrass are three? Depending on who you ask, there are almost 35 species.

Depending on who you ask, there are almost 35 species. The most popular varieties in North America are short, smooth grasses and hairy, long grasses.

Several invasive plants, such as the Asian variety, have also established themselves in many areas.


Comparison table

 BermudaCrabgrass 
LandscapeBest for lawnBest for heavy foot traffic
AppearanceWide, flat bladesFine blades with uniform texture
AggressivenessHighModerate
Water requirementHighModerate
Growth habitsConsistent growingFast-growing
Fertilizer requirementLowHigh
Weed resistanceGoodPoor
Pet’s friendlinessYes No
Grooming requirementsFrequentLess frequent
Shade toleranceNoNo
Varieties5035

Pros And Cons Of Bermuda Grass And Crabgrass

Now you can tell the features of each option and their pros and cons. We will list some outstanding points right here.

Bermuda

Pros:

  • Drought and heat tolerant
  • Ability to recuperate quickly
  • Nice touch on barefoot
  • Aesthetic
  • Resistant to weed killer
  • Pet-friendly

Cons:

  • High maintenance
  • Aggressive and invasive

Crabgrass

Pros:

  • Suitable for heavy foot traffic
  • Low maintenance
  • Less grooming
  • Not very invasive

Cons:

  • Not pet-friendly
  • Not resistant to weed
  • Not aesthetic

Bermuda Grass Vs Crabgrass: What Should You Choose?

Although Bermuda seems to outweigh its competitor, there are cases where the Crabgrass wins the game.

In general, if you do not like to groom your lawn so often, Bermudagrass is a good choice because it grows faster.

Because this turf has large blades that do not damage pets and small animals, creating a pet-friendly habitat.

On the other hand, you may not care about the aesthetic appeal of your lawn. You simply like it to look greenery and energetic all year. So, go for the Crabgrass.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that these two species are very similar. They’re both aggressive growers who will harass and push other species out.

However, their differences are sufficient to distinguish them, such that Bermudagrass forms a beautiful lawn while Crabgrass is an unwelcome weed.

Hopefully, you will find this article helpful. For any further information about gardening, please feel free to ask. Thank you for reading!

Related articles:

How to Plant Bermuda Grass

How to Get Rid of Crabgrass in the Lawn

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