not grown for blooms
3 in. mowed, otherwise up to 3 feet
less than 6 inches
species is native to Europe
USDA zones 4-7
hardy to 8,000 ft.
Tall fescue is the second most common type of grass used for lawns in the Colorado Springs area. It is a deep-rooted, cool season, turfgrass with thick and broad, deep green leaves.
Tall fescue is a good choice for lawn areas that receive moderate to high foot traffic. It differs from Kentucky bluegrass in that it will remain greener when watered two times per week.
The older cultivars have blades that are wider than those of Kentucky Bluegrass, but the newer cultivars have thinner leaves. Tall fescue cannot survive long periods of time (months) without supplemental water.
At the Xeriscape Demonstration Garden, there is an area of tall fescue that was installed in 1991. It has wide blades and a rough texture.
During outdoor watering restrictions when watering was allowed twice per week, we noticed the tall fescue appeared green and vibrant while the Kentucky bluegrass area developed brown spots.
The tall fescue turns brown in late October, while the Kentucky bluegrass remains green about a month longer. It can be a good choice for a lawn area where less maintenance is desired.
For lawn areas, keep tall fescue mowed to a height of approximately 3 inches. Avoid fertilizing in the hottest part of summer.