Native to China and Southeast Asia. It was first introduced
into the United States in 1916 from seed collected by Frank N. Meyer in South
China. Centipedegrass has since become widely grown in the southeastern United
States from S. Carolina to Florida and westward along the Gulf Coast states to
Its popularity as a lawn grass stems from its
adaptation to low fertility conditions and its low maintenance requirements.
Where centipedegrass is adapted and properly managed, it has few serious pest
problems. It is particularly well adapted to the sandy, acid soils of the
southeastern United States. Its westward movement is somewhat limited by severe
iron deficiencies that develop in the alkaline soils of the arid regions. And,
its northward movement is restricted by low temperatures. Centipedegrass is
slightly more cold tolerant than St. Augustine grass, but extended periods of
5°F or less can kill centipedegrass.
Centipedegrass can be found throughout the West Indies,
South America and along some areas of the west coast of Africa. It can be
successfully grown in any of the areas where St. Augustine grass is adapted.
Centipedegrass is moderately shade tolerant, but grows best
in full sunlight. It is not as salt tolerant as St. Augustine or bermudagrass.
Centipedegrass thrives on moderately acid soils, pH 5 to 6. Above pH 7.0 iron
becomes a limiting factor and supplemental applications of iron may be required.
Justin Seed is located in an area with soil pH
above 8 and does not recommend Centipedegrass for our area.