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Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue Grass Seed

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Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue Grass

Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue Grass Seed also known as K 31 was introduced into the United States from Europe in the early 1800's. Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue grass thus became established in pastures and and lawns across North America.

While Kentucky 31 tall fescue has and is used extensively for live stock pasture grass, agronomists no longer recommend Kentucky 31 for livestock pastures due to the presence of endophytes. Endophytes are a naturally occurring fungus in fescue grass species that protect the grass from insects and disease. The problem with endophytes is that they cause issues with cattle and horses that graze on fescue grass that contains them.

With the development of endophyte friendly tall fescue grass such as MaxQ Jesup and endophyte free tall fescue grass such as Bronson Tall Fescue and Kentucky 32 for pasture use,  Kentucky 31 Tall fescue is now used primarily in turf and lawn grass applications.

While K-31 can make a nice turf lawn, notice the more coarse open appearance compared to other improved turf types. When used as a lawn grass, Kentucky 31 exhibits these desirable traits:

  • Attractive green color.
  • Considered drought resistant.
  • Handles traffic - wear well.
  • More heat tolerant than other Tall Fescue varieties
  • Easy to establish and economical

Kentucky 31 is one of the older "proven" lawn grass varieties with a light green, coarse texture.  K-31 remains popular still because of it's lower price and good overall usage qualities (drought / wear / easy establishment). This tall fescue grass variety is ideal for average lawn and turf use.

Agronomists no longer recommend Kentucky 31 for pasture usage. Newer tall fescue grass species for pastures such as MaxQ, Bronson Tall Fescue and Bull Tall Fescue do not have the endophyte problems and show better livestock yields and performance. Lawn use of K-31 seeds is extensive due to it's popularity as a good basic homeowner lawn grass.

Establishment of Kentucky 31 Tall Fescue Grass

Daily Light Required: Full sun to medium shade (4-8 hours of daily sun)
Sun Tolerance: Very good
Shade Tolerance: Moderate
Grass Color: Dark green
Grass Texture: Moderately fine
Drought Tolerance: Excellent
Disease Resistance: Excellent
Traffic Tolerance: Good
Planting Zones: 1,2,3,5,6,7,8, upper parts of zones 9 & 12
Recommended Planting Dates: Early spring or early fall
Planting Rate: New Lawns: 8 lbs/1,000 sq ft
Overseeding:
4 lbs/1,000 sq ft
Planting Depth: 1/8”
Germination: 7-21 days
Mowing Height: 3”-4”
 

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