Is Fescue Grass Perennial?

When it comes to lawns and landscaping, Fescue grass often takes the public eye due to its impressive resilience and lush appearance. But what exactly is Fescue grass, and is it a perennial type of grass?

Yes, Fescue Grass is perennial, it will regrow each spring from the same plant, allowing it to persist and thrive for several years offering long-lasting, low-maintenance greenery for lawns and landscapes.

In this article, we will delve into the attributes of Fescue grass, where it thrives, how to grow it, and the pros and cons connected with this popular choice for lawns.

What Is Fescue Grass?

Fescue grass is a member of a remarkable family of cool-season grasses celebrated for their impressive adaptability and vibrant, lush green appearance. 

What sets Fescue grass apart is that it doesn’t represent a single grass variety; instead, it encompasses an entire family of grasses, boasting a diverse array of species and cultivars.

This family of grasses has gained recognition for its distinctive characteristics and valuable attributes, making it a popular choice in the realm of lawns and landscaping.

Here’s a list of some common Fescue Grass varieties that are perennial, as well as those that are not:

Perennial Fescue Grass Varieties:

  1. Tall Fescue
  2. Fine Fescue
  3. Creeping Red Fescue
  4. Hard Fescue
  5. Chewings Fescue
  6. Sheep Fescue
  7. Strong Creeping Red Fescue

Non-Perennial Fescue Grass Varieties:

  • Annual Ryegrass (sometimes included with Fescue blends but not a true Fescue)
  • Some cultivars or hybrid varieties may have annual or biennial traits, so it’s essential to check specific grass seed labels for growth patterns.
  • When selecting a Fescue Grass variety for your lawn, it’s crucial to verify the growth pattern of the specific cultivar to ensure it aligns with your landscaping goals and local climate conditions.

Within this Fescue grass family, you’ll discover an assortment of species and cultivars, each with its own unique qualities and traits. Some of the prominent types of Fescue grass include:

Tall Fescue

This particular variety stands out for its robustness and adaptability. It’s known for thriving in a wide range of conditions and is a favored choice for many lawns due to its resilience.

Fine Fescue

In contrast to the more robust Tall Fescue, Fine Fescue varieties are recognized for their finer blades and ornamental appeal. They bring a touch of elegance to landscapes and are prized for their aesthetic value.

Creeping Red Fescue

This type of Fescue grass has a creeping growth habit, making it suitable for ground cover in shaded areas. It excels in its ability to create a dense, carpet-like texture in lawns.

Hard Fescue

Known for its durability, we often use Hard Fescue in low-maintenance lawns, particularly in areas where a natural, less-manicured look is desired.

Chewings Fescue

This Fescue variety is celebrated for its fine texture and adaptability to a variety of soil types. It’s commonly used in golf course fairways and ornamental lawns.

Sheep Fescue

Sheep Fescue is a fine-leaved grass variety with a tufted growth pattern, making it suitable for rocky or sandy soils. It’s often chosen for its tolerance of adverse conditions.

Strong Creeping Red Fescue

As the name suggests, this Fescue grass type has strong creeping tendencies, making it an excellent choice for establishing a dense lawn with excellent ground coverage.

Growing Your Fescue Grass

Planting Fescue Grass

To grow Fescue grass, follow these steps:

  1. Soil Preparation: Start by preparing the soil by removing any debris and improving drainage if necessary.
  2. Seeding: Spread Fescue grass seeds evenly over the soil. It’s essential to use high-quality seeds.
  3. Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist until the grass is established during watering.
  4. Maintenance: Regular mowing, fertilizing, and pest control are essential for a healthy Fescue lawn.

Maintenance Tips

  • Mow Fescue grass to a height of 2-3 inches.
  • Water deeply but infrequently to encourage deep root growth.
  • Apply a balanced fertilizer in the fall and spring.
  • Keep an eye out for pests
  • and treat as needed.

Pros and Cons of Fescue Grass

Advantages of Fescue Grass

  • Drought Tolerance: Fescue grass is known for its drought resistance, making it an excellent choice for water-conscious homeowners.
  • Shade Tolerance: It can thrive in shaded areas where other grasses struggle.
  • Disease Resistance: Fescue grass varieties often exhibit good resistance to diseases.

Disadvantages of Fescue Grass

  • Heat Sensitivity: Some Fescue varieties are sensitive to high temperatures.
  • Slow Growth: It may take longer to establish a Fescue lawn compared to warm-season grasses.
  • Maintenance: Regular maintenance is required to keep it looking its best.

Where does Fescue Grass Grow Best?

Fescue grass, when it comes to its ideal growth conditions, shows a preference for cooler climates. It’s most commonly encountered thriving in regions characterized by their cooler temperatures.

These areas include the northern regions of the United States, parts of Canada, and various European countries.

In these locales, Fescue grass demonstrates its remarkable adaptability and often serves as a prominent feature in lawns and landscapes.

However, it’s worth noting that Fescue grass is not limited solely to cooler climates. Certain varieties within the Fescue family exhibit a surprising degree of resilience and can tolerate a broader range of temperatures.

This adaptability extends its potential for growth into what are known as “transition zones.”

These zones experience a mix of both warm and cool weather, and Fescue grass varieties that can withstand warmer temperatures find a place in these regions as well.

In these transition zones, Fescue grass manages to flourish even when faced with occasional heat, showcasing its versatility.

This adaptability is a testament to the diverse range of Fescue grass varieties available, each with its own set of characteristics and capabilities.

So, whether you reside in a cooler northern climate or find yourself in one of these transition zones, Fescue grass offers you a viable and attractive option for your lawn.

Its capacity to thrive in various conditions makes it a sought-after choice for most homeowners and landscapers looking for a versatile and beautiful grass variety to enhance their outdoor spaces.


Fescue Grass, renowned for its impressive resilience and lush appearance, has been the focus of our exploration in this article. We’ve addressed several key aspects regarding Fescue Grass to provide a comprehensive understanding of this versatile grass variety.

First and foremost, we established that Fescue Grass is indeed perennial, characterized by its ability to regrow each spring from the same plant. This quality ensures long-lasting, low-maintenance greenery for lawns and landscapes.

Our exploration also delved into the family of Fescue Grasses, emphasizing that it’s not limited to a single type but rather comprises a diverse array of species and cultivars.

This diversity offers homeowners and landscapers a wide range of options to suit their specific needs, whether it’s for resilience, ornamental value, or adaptability to challenging conditions.

We provided a list of some common Fescue Grass varieties, both perennial and non-perennial, to help readers make informed choices when selecting the most suitable variety for their lawns.

Additionally, we discussed the essentials of growing Fescue Grass, from soil preparation to maintenance tips, ensuring the successful establishment and care of this grass.

We highlighted the pros and cons of Fescue Grass, offering a balanced view of its advantages, such as drought and shade tolerance, and its disadvantages, including heat sensitivity and slower growth.

Furthermore, we explored the optimal growing conditions for Fescue Grass. While it predominantly thrives in cooler climates, it was revealed that certain varieties within the Fescue family can adapt to warmer temperatures, making them suitable for transition zones.

Manny Moore

Getting my hands dirty and building a place that me and my small family love is a driving factor for what I do and how I do it. I want to share what I have learned and practiced so that it is just that much easier for everyone to have another tool in their tool belt. Your home should be a place that you love and feel comfortable in and your backyard should be no different.

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