Grasses are often considered valuable for their aesthetic qualities, but there is much more to these plants than meets the eye. Here are a number of Facts About Grass some of which are surprising.
All grasses are in the Poaceae family, which is one of the most abundant families of plants on earth. From pasture grasses for animal consumption to food crops, such as oat and barley, for human consumption, grasses make up the world’s most significant food source.
Around the world, there are 11,400 known grasses. Incredible? The Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew painstakingly compiled the list of all grass species that we know about. It shows the huge potential for exploring new species to use in lawn seed mixtures. Whilst there is this vast list of plants in the Poaceae family, different types of grasses have some similarities. All grasses produce seeds that are monocotyledonous, which means that each seed produces only one leaf sprout. Additionally, most grasses are herbaceous, so they don’t produce woody stems, and they die back to the ground at the end of the growing season.
A Valuable Resource
Grasses are invaluable assets to our planet and its inhabitants. With a better understanding and appreciation for grasses, you may never look at your lawn the same way again.
Facts About Grass
Here are 10 unusual Grass Facts you may not know about the Poaceae family of plants:
- About 1,400 species of grasses exist in the United States.
- Grasses make up about 26% of the plant life on earth.
- By weight, turfgrass is 75 to 80% water.
- Varieties of grass grow on all continents, even in polar regions. Antarctic hair grass (Deschampsia Antarctica) is the only member of the Poaceae family native to Antarctica.
- A healthy lawn can increase a home’s value by up to 20%.
- Grass-covered lawns, prairies and hillsides help prevent erosion by keeping soil in place with their root systems.
- Grass lawns improve air quality by producing oxygen and trapping airborne dust particles and other contaminants.
- Home landscapes that include grass lawns, trees and shrubs can reduce the air temperature surrounding the home by up to 7°C.
- Giant bamboo, which can grow up to 151 feet tall, is the largest variety of grass.
- A 250m2 lawn produces enough oxygen for a family of four.
Because grasses have a positive impact on climate, clean water and air quality, every homeowner can take part in supporting a healthy environment. While you’re probably not growing giant bamboo or Antartic hair grass, maintaining your lawn is a simple way to improve your air quality while increasing the value of your home.