About Kikuyu Varieties
Kikuyu, a native of the highlands of East Africa, is now naturalised in many coastal and inland regions of Australia. It is the most vigorous of all lawn grasses, with stout stolons and rhizomes. For this reason it has often been regarded as undesirable in home gardens. But when kept within bounds, by mower strips and the use of weedkillers, kikuyu makes an attractive, hard-wearing lawn.
It stays greener in winter than other warm-season grasses and tolerates partial shade, growing well to the base of trees. It revels in warm weather, tolerates dry spells but needs watering in very hot conditions.
Kikuyu responds dramatically to nitrogen fertilisers. We recommend the use of slow release fertilisers such as Yates Buffalo PRO. The dense turf resists weeds, insects and disease. Although, at one time, kikuyu seed could not be purchased in Australia, it is now available.
In late spring or early summer sow 100 per cent kikuyu seed at 125 g per 100 square metres, or blends containing kikuyu and a nursery grass (such as annual rye) at 1 kg per 100 square metres or as directed on the product label.
Kikuyu germinates best when soil temperatures are above 21°C. The vigorous seedlings emerge in seven to twenty-one days. Runners can be planted in spring or summer, and kikuyu turf can be laid at almost any time of the year. Kikuyu is the most difficult lawn seed to establish.