St Augustine has an attractive blue-green color and forms a deep, fairly dense turf. It spreads by above ground runners and has broad, flat blades. Often the most popular choice for lawns throughout the southern US, St Augustine can grow in a wide range of soil types. It thrives in heat and does well under drought conditions. St Augustine is moderately good under heavy foot traffic and is somewhat shade tolerant. While it is aggressive, it is easily controlled around borders.
Centipede is a low, medium textured grass that makes a dense, attractive, weed free turf. It is more shade tolerant than Bermuda but less shade tolerant than St Augustine or Zoysia. Since it produces only surface runners, it is easily controlled around borders, flower beds and walks. Centipede's popularity as a lawn grass stems from its adaptation to low fertility conditions and its low maintenance requirements. It is generally resistant to most insects and diseases.
Bermuda grass is drought resistant, grows on many soils and makes good turf. Because it can withstand heavy traffic, it is a major species used for sports fields, parks, golf courses and lawns. Tifway 419 Hybrid Bermuda has improved disease resistance, greater density, better weed resistance, fewer seed heads and a finer, softer texture with a more favorable color.
Zoysia is extremely drought tolerant. Although it turns straw colored under extreme drought conditions, it has the capacity to respond to subsequent irrigation or rainfall. It conserves moisture more effectively than other species and has a deep root system allowing it to extract water from greater soil depths. Zoysia is nearly as salt tolerant as Bemuda and is among the most wear tolerant turf grasses. It does, however, grow slowly, so recuperation is slow. It is fairly shade tolerant.