The Best Sod for San Francisco

Posted by George Bravos on

The Best 5 Sod Types for San Francisco 2022

Today we will dive into the best 5 sod types for San Francisco, CA and three main factors that will affect this list. The historic and beautiful city of San Francisco is the heart of the Bay Area, and for many reasons, having a sod lawn is a great idea! However, there are some important considerations to make when choosing the best grass lawn for San Francisco, including factors such as shade tolerance, cool climate and aesthetics. Let's dive in!

Top view of sod and seed install in San Francisco

This is a picture taken by one of our installers at a Shade Blend installation site in San Francisco, California. 

Best Grasses for Shade Tolerance in San Francisco

Although California is known as the “sunny state”, a shade-tolerant sod is essential to consider because of the shady conditions specific to the city of San Francisco. There are many factors that would cause a shady lawn. Two of the most common shade-causing factors are general shady or overcast climate and shade cast by natural elements like trees or structural things such as tall building. For San Francisco, these are both true and common. San Francisco is known for its overcast climate and high buildings, both commercial and residential. It is common to see high structured homes closely built together in most San Francisco neighborhoods, making the areas unaffected by shade rare. Whether it is the overcast weather, or the shade from a building, San Francisco grasses should have some degree of shade tolerance. Some of our most popular shade loving grasses are our Mow Free, Shade Blend, Blue Rye, Native Grassland Mix and West Coaster Tall Fescue. A sod lawn must have some degree of sun to survive, so if sun exposure is limited, ensuring you prepare with one of the best shade-tolerant lawns for San Francisco will be beneficial for the long term health of your sod lawn. 

Sod SF

Best Grasses for Cool Climate in San Francisco

Although California has a moderate climate overall, a grass adapted for a cooler climate is essential to consider because of the generally cooler weather in San Francisco. The water that surrounds The City keep its temperatures cool, making it critical to consider a grass cultivated for cooler temperatures. In addition to the giant body of water San Francisco lies in, its overcast weather keeps its temperatures nice and low as well. So, a grass lawn that can tolerate cooler temperatures is key. Some of our best grasses tolerating cooler temperature are our Blue Rye, Bluegrass, Ryegrass, Rye Blue Mix, Shade Blend and Mow Free. In fact, we have grasses that are called “cool-season grasses” which continue to thrive in cooler temperatures, as opposed to “warm-season grasses” which have extremely high heat and drought tolerance but don't do as well is cooler climate. For San Francisco, a cool-season grass is preferred!

For more information on our best warm-season grasses for California, check out our blog “5 Things You Should Know About the Best Bermuda Grass for California”  

Shady sod grass lawn by Sod and Seed, Inc.
Shade Blend Sod Lawn Installation in San Francisco, CA

Best Aesthetic Grasses for San Francisco

Aesthetics are a key factor to consider for a San Francisco grass lawn for various reasons. Firstly, it is known that sod lawns increase the property value of homes by up to 15%, as discussed by Lindsay Listanski in her blog, “How Much Is A Well Maintained Lawn Worth?” Fifteen percent may not seem like a lot, but it sure is when you are looking at the numbers for housing prices in San Francisco. When we get phone calls from customers looking to have a “nice front yard” or customers who are looking to sell their home, we almost always make the following recommendations for the top aesthetic lawns, compatible with San Francisco: Blue Rye, Bluegrass, Ryegrass, Rye Blue Mix, Mow Free and our Shade Blend. Which leads us to our next point, San Francisco is a beautiful city, and a grass lawn not only adds aesthetic, but a natural element in a heavily developed city. With cozy neighborhoods and cozy homes, a sod lawn creates a safe and beautiful space for movement that may otherwise be difficult. Aesthetics also matter in a city like San Francisco because it is a high-tourist city. In 2019, the San Francisco metro area was visited by 3,308,000 foreign tourists. A grass lawn isn’t just something that looks good for tourists to see, but it’s also a property investment and creates a safe, natural space for lawn owners to enjoy. 

Kentucky Bluegrass

Our beautiful Bluegrass sod sample at the Sod and Seed, Inc. storefront

In conclusion, the best sod types for San Francisco should have some shade tolerance, preferably be a cool-climate grass and should be aesthetic. Our top 5 recommendations include: Shade Blend, Bluegrass Ryegrass Mix, Mow Free, Rye Blue Mix and our 100% Kentucky Bluegrass. Which of these turf types would best suit your San Francisco lawn? You can shop our best sod for San Francisco at the links below, and if you have more questions or want to talk through the best lawn for your SF home, please give us a call! Our friendly Sales Representatives are happy to discuss the sod type that will best match your conditions and lawn needs.  







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  • Hi Jane! Thank you for dropping by our blog. You may check this helpful guide for your DIY sod installation.

    Lizza L. on
  • I am planning to install sod in the next month. I am so excited!!!

    Jane Wright on
  • Hi Lena, great decision. Native Mow Free is the perfect choice for homeowners seeking an alternative to the high cost and intensive maintenance of traditional grass lawns. Native Mow Free is the grass seed of choice for the environmentally conscious lawn enthusiast. Our grass has a low demand for water and is well adapted to dry, arid, or hot weather environments. If you are interested, please follow this link to place your order:

    Lizza L. on
  • Thanks for this blog. I am interested in purchasing this Native Mow Free. How to order?

    Lena Clevenger on
  • I live in San Francisco, where the summers are very hot and dry. My Ryegrass has held up well even with a drought. I would recommend this to anyone living in a similar climate.

    Emily Fernandez on

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