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Kentucky 31 Vs Tall Fescue: Similarities & Differences To Know

If you want to choose the perfect grass to cover your lawn, you must be able to distinguish Kentucky 31 vs. other Tall Fescue varieties. These grasses have unique differences that will blow your mind.

Generally, Kentucky 31 and Tall Fescue share the same family and have similarities in adaptabilities and requirements. However, both are different in appearance, texture, growth habits, adaptability, and price.

The mowing height of Kentucky 31 is 2.5-3.5 inches, whereas Tall Fescue has the mowing height of about 1-2.5 inches.

So, go through this complete article to know the potential difference between two similar grasses, Kentucky 31 and Tall Fescue, to add them according to your preferences.

Kentucky 31 Vs Tall Fescue [Similarities]

Both Kentucky 31 and Tall Fescue are members of the family Poaceae, which is also called a grass family. Moreover, both grasses are the sources of food and shelter for many insects and reptiles.

Kentucky 31 on the left vs Tall Fescue on the right
Both Kentucky 31 and Tall Fescue grow in clumps, but Kentucky 31 is rougher and wider.

You can use both grasses in lawns, pond edges, fields, patches, athlete ground, etc. These grasses also work best in areas with heavy human traffic. 

  • Both cool-season grasses thrive best in early spring and late fall when the temperature of the place is cool but not too cold.
  • The roots of both kinds of grass are very deep, helping them to take water during hot climates.
  • Moreover, both grasses demand full sunlight for their growth. However, both can tolerate partial shade.
  • Both varieties resist different pests and diseases like grey leaf spots, leaf rusts, dollar spots, billbugs, worms, etc.
  • Also, both are low-maintenance grass varieties, perfect to grow even with a busy schedule.
  • These hardy grasses can tolerate drought very well, making them suitable for areas with water shortages.
  • You can grow these grasses almost anywhere, as they have the best adaptation qualities in many soil types.

Kentucky 31 Vs Tall Fescue [Differences]

Kentucky 31 is a variety that is part of Tall Fescue and thus bears common characteristics with Tall Fescue. In contrast, Tall Fescue is a variety that involves many other grass varieties, including Kentucky 31.

1. Grass Appearance

Although Kentucky 31 is a part of Tall Fescue, it grows higher. This grass can grow about 2-4 inches tall. In contrast, Tall Fescuegrows up to 1-3 inches tall.

If you look closely, the color of Kentucky 31 is deep green. Meanwhile, Tall Fescue cultivars exhibit different shades of green with a blue-green appearance in some.

2. Texture

If you look at the edges of these grasses, you can see that Kentucky 31 bears wider blades. Moreover, the texture of the outer surface of grass is rough.

In contrast, the blades of many Tall Fescue varieties are slightly narrower than Kentucky 31. The texture of the grasses is also smooth, delicate, and finer.

3. Growth Habit

Usually, Kentucky 31 grows in bunches and does not result in messy ground as the grass does not spread through rhizomes and stolons.

Meanwhile, many Tall Fescue grasses spread through rhizomes due to their rhizomatous growth habits. This can cover the ground faster but looks messy over time.

4. Adaptability

Due to the rough texture, Kentucky 31 can tolerate heavy foot traffic, making it suitable for parks and playgrounds.

Meanwhile, Tall fescue grasses have a lower tolerance to foot traffic than Kentucky 31 due to the softer and delicate grasses.

Additionally, Kentucky 31 also has higher shade, heat, drought, and salt tolerance compared to other Tall Fescue varieties.

5. Price

Generally, Kentucky 31 is less expensive than Tall Fescue as it has a good establishment compared to Tall Fescue.

Moreover, you can get Kentucky 31 seeds widely available in the market, but the seeds availability of Tall Fescue is limited.

From Editorial Team

Kentucky 31 Vs Tall Fescue: What To Choose?

If you live in hot and humid climates and want durable grass with higher adaptive qualities on a low budget, it’s perfect to choose Kentucky 31.

However, choose Tall Fescue if you are from a cold climate and want to grow grass with finer texture on your lawns with lesser foot traffic.