Popular for lawns, seeds take up to 30 days to sprout. For sunny areas where winter dormancy is acceptable, the best lawns are warm-season grass varieties, such as Bermuda, hybrid Bermuda, kikuyu and zoysias. These creeping grasses are great for filling in empty spaces and recovering quickly from foot traffic. They are also very salt tolerant and don't burn easily with pet urine (they are high in salts and nitrogen).
Warm-season grasses also have deep roots and are drought tolerant. These types of grass that remain dormant are also better for cold climate areas and can usually handle being covered in snow. On the downside, since these grasses creep up, plan to work a little harder every two years to remove the straw and keep the grass well-groomed. Cool-season grasses, such as Kentucky bluegrass, Kentucky's 31-inch-tall fescue, and tall, grass-like fescues, also grow well on cold lawns in the north.
For Pacific Northwest lawns with sun and shade, the Pennington Smart Seed Sun and Shade Grass seed and fertilizer mix combines fine shade-tolerant fescues, tall fescue, perennial ryegrass, and Kentucky bluegrass. Kentucky bluegrass is one of the most popular types in the North. It has an intense green color and an excellent texture. It grows well from seed and is a popular choice for northern grass farms.
It grows from a very extensive system of rhizomes, underground stems that produce new plants. However, it doesn't grow well in deep shade. Cool-season grasses develop deep, healthy root systems in climates with hot summers and cold winters. These grasses can tolerate some drought during the summer, but they grow best with regular rainfall.
In general, cool-season pastures thrive in the northern half of the United States and along the West Coast. When selecting a type of grass for your lawn or pasture, it's important to consider your climate and soil conditions. But more importantly, focus on the quality and reputation of the sod farm you're shopping at and forget about brands.