Skip to content
12868 HWY.105 WEST, CONROE TX 77304
texas grass sun requirements

If you’re looking to understand which is the best grass for shade in Texas, we can help clarify. Grasses vary from semi-shade tolerant to requiring full sun and we’re here to provide a comprehensive guide to shade grass in Texas. Let’s review nine common Texas grass types with their shade tolerance levels so you can start landscaping with confidence. If you need a helping hand or an extra green thumb, The Grass Store is available for free consultations, price quotes, delivery, installation, and more.

Challenges for Grass Growth

To understand why shade could be a threat to your lawn we have to go back to the basics. Like all plants, the grass uses photosynthesis to live and grow. During photosynthesis, carbon dioxide is combined with water and solar energy and converted into carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are a way to store the sun’s energy as “food,” which is crucial for plant growth and maintenance. Where shade can present challenges for grass growth is when it hinders the photosynthesis process. When grass struggles to photosynthesize, it can’t develop deep roots and will eventually lose its color and die out. So while the sun does need the sun to grow and thrive, there are shade-tolerant grass types that will stand a better chance against others or alternative options if you have a fully shaded area.

Zeon zoysia in shade
Zeon Zoysia in Shade

Evaluate the Shade Conditions in Your Yard

Knowing the sunlight movement in your yard will lead to greater success when it comes to choosing the right shade-tolerant grass type. Examine and monitor the area where your grass will grow, especially as the sun moves throughout the day so you can track the amount of shade it gets and where it hits. Knowing if your lawn is fully exposed to direct sun all day long or if it’s partially shaded will help determine what grass you should choose. Different grasses require different hours of direct sunlight so check out the chart below to save and refer to when you’re ready to make the best choice for your landscaping project.

Zoysia grasses do very well in shade overall. Zeon Zoysia, specifically, requires the least amount of direct sunlight per day, at only three hours. It’s the best option for shade-tolerant grass of any St. Augustine or Zoysia variety. Armed with amazing shade tolerance and good drought resistance, Zoysia grasses are an ideal option for Texas lawns.

St. Augustine grasses are praised for superior shade tolerance, making them a popular choice for shaded areas and landscapes. The wide-bladed and course texture paired with the deep green color makes St. Augustine grasses stand out as traditional Texas lawns. Palmetto St. Augustine has a denser root system compared to Raleigh St. Augustine, which allows it to tolerate slightly more shade but they are both excellent options for shady landscapes in Texas. While Palmetto is slightly more expensive than Raleigh, it’s always our recommendation to put the best St. Augustine grass for shade to avoid having to redo it later.

Palmetto st Augustine for shade
Palmetto St. Augustine for Shade

Bermuda grasses are not suitable for shaded environments at all due to the extremely high sunlight requirement. They need full sun and won’t thrive in shade. TifTuf is the best Bermuda to use if you have partial shade, but ideally, it would get 3/4-day sunlight or more.

Tips to Solve for Unwanted Shaded Areas

We understand that you can’t always control the circumstances you’re working with in terms of lawn layout and the shade that you have, so here are some steps you can take to help your grass grow even in shady areas:

  • Prune tree limbs to allow for more sunlight and consult with an arborist if you’re considering removing or adding any trees
  • Minimize foot traffic in areas under shade to allow for proper and slower growth. The less activity, the better
  • Mow the grass in shaded areas slightly taller to allow for more leaf surface for sunlight absorption. Be sure to promptly remove clippings to allow for air circulation
  • Ensure there is proper water drainage in shaded areas. Aerating the lawn soil once a month or more often will increase the permeation of air and nutrients and help with water drainage
  • If your area is not conducive to grass of any kind because it gets no direct sunlight at all, consider concrete, rocks, mulch, or gravel as an option – at The Grass Store we have it all!
Emerald Zoysia in shade
Emerald Zoysia in shade

Selecting the right shade-tolerant grass is an important first step in starting any outdoor project. All grass types need some amount of sunlight to grow, but Zeon Zoysia stands out as the best grass for shade in Texas. The Grass Store carries many types of grass that are well suited to Texas and we’re here to help you accomplish your landscaping design dreams. We offer the best sod, grass, and service around. Contact us today to ask questions, receive a free quote, book an appointment, or come visit us in Conroe, Texas!

Back To Top