Kikuyu Grass

A warm climate staple of the Kiwi (or crib if you’re a mainlander) lawn! Kikuyu is excellent for high traffic areas, coastal gardens and drought prone, frost free regions of New Zealand.

About Kikuyu Varieties

Kikuyu, a native of the highlands of East Africa, is now naturalised in many coastal and northern regions of New Zealand. It is the most vigorous of all lawn grasses, with stout stolons and rhizomes. For this reason, it has often been regarded as undesirable in home gardens. But when kept within bounds, by mower strips and the use of weedkillers, kikuyu makes an attractive, hard-wearing lawn.

It stays greener in summer than cool-climate grasses but may brown off in winter due to do it going dormant, this generally happens only for a short period. Kikuyu tolerates partial shade, growing well to the base of trees. It revels in warm weather, tolerates dry spells but can benefit from watering in very hot conditions. Kikuyu prefers frost free regions of New Zealand.

Kikuyu responds dramatically to nitrogen fertilisers. We recommend the use of slow release fertilisers such as Yates Thrive Granular Lawn Fertiliser or the gentle release of Yates Dynamic Lifter Concentrated Lawn Food.

The dense turf resists weeds, insects and disease. Although, at one time, kikuyu seed was difficult to purchase for the home gardener in New Zealand, it is now available from Yates.

In late spring or early summer sow blends containing kikuyu and a nursery grass (such as annual ryegrass) at 1 kg per 66 square metres or as directed on the product label. As the kikuyu seed is very fine, mix thoroughly before dispersion.

Fast germinating ryegrass minimises soil erosion and reduces weed competition while the kikuyu seedlings establish. Kikuyu germinates best when soil temperatures are above 21°C. The vigorous seedlings emerge in seven to twenty-one days. Runners can be planted in spring or summer, and kikuyu turf can be laid at almost any time of the year. Kikuyu can take its time to establish.

Note - we do not recommend using Yates Weed 'n' Feed on your kikuyu lawn.

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