South Carolina Grass Types

Looking for the optimal grass varieties for lawns in South Carolina? Below is a comparison table and accompanying data that will give you information about what grasses are best suited for South Carolina and its inner counties.

Note: Cold, heat, drought, and saturation tolerance are measured on a score of 0-5 with 0 being the least tolerant and 5 being the most.

Zoysia Grass

Most suitable grass (on average)

Buffalo Grass

Great for areas with heavy rainfall

Kikuyu Grass

3rd most suitable (on average)

Bahia Grass

4th most suitable (on average)

Tall Fescue

Optimal for hotter areas

Bermuda Grass

Ideal for drought-prone areas

Kentucky Bluegrass

Best suited for shaded areas

Lawn Visual
Seasonal Type Warm Warm Warm Warm Cool Warm Cool
Cold Tolerance 2.5 3.5 1.5 1.5 4.0 1.0 4.0
Heat Tolerance 4.0 4.0 4.5 4.5 3.5 5.0 2.5
Drought Tolerance 3.5 5.0 4.5 5.0 3.5 4.5 3.0
Saturation Tolerance 2.0 2.0 2.5 3.5 3.0 1.0 3.0
USDA Zone(s) 6-13 5-9 6-13 4-13 5-8 8-13 1-7
Sun Exposure Full Sun, Partial Shade Full Sun, Deep Shade Full Sun, Light Shade Full Sun, Light Shade Mostly Sun, Deep Shade Full Sun, Light Shade Mostly Sun, Partial Shade
Moderate, Moderate Low, Slow High, Moderate Moderate, Moderate Moderate, Moderate High, Rapid Moderate, Moderate
Weekly, 1 inch Bi-weekly, 0.5 inches Weekly, 1-1.25 inches Bi-weekly, 0.5-0.75 inches Weekly, 1-1.5 inches Weekly, 1-1.25 inches Weekly, 1-1.5 inches
Every 7-10 days, 0.5-1.5 inches Every 10-14 days, 2-3 inches Every 7 days, 1-1.5 inches Every 7-14 days, 2.5-4 inches Every 5-7 days, 2-3.5 inches Every 5-7 days, 0.5-1.5 inches Every 5-7 days, 2.5-3.5 inches
Soil Well-drained, Loamy
pH: 6.0-7.0
Well-drained, Loamy to Sandy
pH: 6.0-7.5
pH: 5.5-7.0
Acidic, Sandy
pH: 5.5-6.5
pH: 5.5-7.5
Sandy, Well-drained
pH: 5.8-7.0
Well-drained, Loamy
pH: 6.0-7.0
Texture Fine to Medium Fine Medium to Coarse Coarse Coarse Fine to Medium Fine to Medium
Color Light Green Blue-Green Dark Green Light Green Dark Green Dark Green Rich Green

South Carolina Zones

The interactive map below shows the USDA plant hardiness zones specific to South Carolina. Each zone in the map represents a certain temperature range that is critical for plant survival and growth, divided based on the average annual minimum winter temperature. Click on the map to see the optimial grass types for each county.

Zone No. 7 8
Map Color
Lowest Avg. Winter Temperature 0° to 10°F 10° to 20°F

The chart and table below shows the average monthly precipitation and minimum/maximum temperatures in South Carolina over the last 5 years.

Month Min Temp (°F) Max Temp (°F) Prep (in)
Jan34.76 °F56.16 °F3.87"
Feb41.28 °F62.88 °F4.05"
Mar44.74 °F67.98 °F3.35"
Apr49.14 °F75 °F3.86"
May60.34 °F83.34 °F4.18"
Jun67.48 °F88.22 °F4.7"
Jul71 °F90.68 °F5.5"
Aug70.56 °F89.32 °F5.37"
Sep65.34 °F85.94 °F4.54"
Oct55 °F77.18 °F3.32"
Nov42.82 °F65.44 °F3.65"
Dec38.34 °F59.74 °F4.83"

The chart below shows the optimal months for seeding or sodding new grass in South Carolina. Suitability for each month is based on the average monthly temperature in South Carolina.

April, May and October are the most optimal months for planting cool-season grasses in South Carolina.

July and May are the most optimal months for planting warm-season grasses in South Carolina.

Grass Types by County in South Carolina

Below is a list of counties in South Carolina. Click on any county to get a more detailed analysis.

Data source and citation

Raw data for the grass characteristics was sourced from the USDA's PLANTS Database.

Data for climate zones in South Carolina was gathered from the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map as well as GIS datasets from the Oregon State University PRISM Climate Group.

Average monthly temperatures and precipitation data for South Carolina was sourced from the NOAA National Centers for Environmental information.

Please use the citation tool below to reference any information found on this page.

  • "South Carolina Grass Types". Accessed on July 20, 2024.

  • "South Carolina Grass Types"., Accessed July 20, 2024

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