Bermuda grass is one of the most common grass you might find growing on your lawn.
If you have this type of grass, it’s important to know about management practices for Bermudagrass lawns if you want a vibrant, green color for your yard.
The first step is knowing when your grass is dormant and when to expect it to come back.
Bermuda grass starts to go dormant when the temperature reaches about 55° degrees Fahrenheit (13° C). This halts chlorophyll production. It goes completely dormant once the temperature drops to 32° degrees Fahrenheit (0° C). In the spring, it begins to grow when temperatures reach 60-75° degrees Fahrenheit (24° C).
Heat and environmental stress play a big role in lawn management practices.
Keep reading, and we’ll cover how this plant does as the weather changes!
Table of Contents
What Month Does Bermuda Grass Go Dormant?
Bermuda is a warm-season grass.
This means it’s the most active in spring through summer heat and goes dormant in cold temperatures.
By late winter, it’s already dormant in cool soils.
Since Bermuda grass is so widespread, it’s easier to define its dormancy by soil temperatures rather than a month.
After all, the summer months and weather patterns in the United States differ from Australia’s climate conditions.
The plant grows in both places.
It lasts from mid-March to mid-November in the United States, for reference.
You’ll notice your entire yard change from a green to a brown color when the weather starts to get to 55° degrees Fahrenheit (13° C) or less.
At this point, your lawn isn’t fully dormant, but chlorophyll production decreases significantly.
This causes the turf color to fade as your entire lawn becomes more dormant in cold weather.
Complete dormancy will occur as the temperature drops even lower in the late winter.
Ice forms within the plant tissue at 32° degrees Fahrenheit (0° C) even during dry winter.
These cool soil temperatures halt production within the plant.
Is It OK to Mow Dormant Bermuda Grass?
You aren’t going to hurt your lawn by mowing in the winter.
The growth rate means you won’t have to add it to lawn management.
While you may find mowing spots here and there helpful, mowing the full lawn isn’t often a problem during winter management – much like adding water.
This is because dormancy isn’t an active growth period.
So, your cool grass isn’t going to get longer, calling for you to cut it.
Further Reading: How short is too short for Bermuda grass?
What Month Does Bermuda Grass Turn Green?
As cool weather temperatures fade, your lawn will return.
In the U.S., this often means your green lawn will come back sometime from February through April.
Varying yearly climate can cause delays in the warm months.
This can lengthen the dormant season, but you’ll still get back your lawn in spring.
Once the weather reaches warmer temperatures, dormant grass will become green again.
For this growth, you’ll need the air temperatures during the day to hover around 75° degrees Fahrenheit (24° C).
As for nighttime temperatures, it needs to stay at least around 60° degrees Fahrenheit (!6° C).
This will heat the air and soil enough to “wake” your dormant grass.
How Long Does It Take Bermuda Grass to Come Out of Dormancy?
Of course, the day you wake up, and it’s warm out, you won’t open your window to your brown lawn refreshed and full of green growth.
It’ll take a few days of consistency in the weather for your grass to come out of its dormancy.
This need for consistency is why many lawns don’t fully come back until late spring.
Once the weather stabilizes and you resume regular grass care, you’ll have a healthy lawn through the summer heat.
When Should I Stop Watering Bermuda Grass?
Watering your grass is an important aspect of lawn care throughout the growing season.
Yet, your backyard grass lawn doesn’t need constant watering.
As your grass enters winter dormancy, it’s time to change your lawn care schedule.
Right now, you don’t have to worry about green growth.
While your lawn is in a dormancy period, it doesn’t have as much need for water.
You don’t need to water your cool-season grass as much.
But if it’s below freezing, don’t water it.
Commonly Asked Questions
Will Dead Bermuda Grass Come Back?
No. It’s important to note that “dormant” doesn’t mean the same thing as “dead.”
Dormant phase grass will return once the weather is fair enough to sustain it.
If you have a dead spot in your annual grass, it’s gone for good.
There’s no reviving dead grass or garden plants.
If you notice some dead grass on your backyard lawn, you’ll need to start regrowing new grass from seed form if you want a healthy lawn in spring.
It helps to assess your whole yard if you’re attempting to tell dead and dormant grass apart.
If there are a few brown spots in an otherwise attractive lawn, you likely have dead spots.
On the other hand, if all of the grass is the same brown color, it’s more likely dormancy.
Why Does Bermuda Grass Turn Brown After Mowing?
As you mow your grass, you may notice your lawn looks a bit brown.
This doesn’t mean your grass is dead once you’ve mowed the green away.
If there was a break in your lawn care schedule, you might notice this effect more.
This is because it’s a result of long grass blocking sunlight to the part of the plant closer to the roots.
Once you cut away the long, green grass, the turf color beneath suffers from this lack of sunlight.
After the grass is cut, your lawn will have a chance to get the sun it needs.
Further Reading: Helping brown Bermuda grass look better
Is It OK to Spray Roundup on Dormant Bermuda Grass?
Weed growth on your lawn can give you a real headache.
Yet, you have some unexpected options for weed prevention.
During winter dormancy, it’s sometimes possible to eliminate annual weeds in a Bermuda grass lawn.
You’ll need to make sure your lawn is in a dormant phase.
If it isn’t, this method can cause damage or delay green growth in the spring.
When the grass is fully dormant, it’s possible to use Roundup to control weeds.
To get specific, any glyphosate weed killers will work.
This is the active ingredient in Roundup and many weed killers.
It’s great for weed prevention and control during dormancy.
This will help ensure the grassy weeds distracting from your healthy lawn don’t return with the warm weather growth.