Sod Comparison & Differences
Bahia vs. Centipede

Let's dive into a side-by-side comparison of these two grasses. We're looking at everything from cost and looks to how well they stand up to drought, shade, and foot traffic. Stick around to see which one comes out on top!

Close up photo of Bahia sod
Bahia
vs
Close up photo of Centipede sod
Centipede

Cost

Which grass is typically more expensive, Bahia or Centipede?

Between these two, Centipede is typically on the pricier side with an average cost per square foot of $0.73. On a per pallet basis, which is usually how sod is sold, this comes out to roughly $362.50 per pallet.

Bahia on the other hand, is a more moderately priced at $0.45 per square foot (on average). This comes out to around $225.00 per pallet.

BahiaBudget Friendly
from$0.30 / sq ft
to$0.60 / sq ft
Centipede
from$0.50 / sq ft
to$0.95 / sq ft

Editor's note: It's important to remember that both of these are averages based on data from around the country so cost can vary depending on your location. Keep in mind this doesn't include other fees like delivery or installation.

See our sod calculator to get a comprehensive sod estimate.

Shade Tolerance

Which grass grows better in the shade?

Bahia Grass is a sun-lover and typically needs about 6 to 8 hours of sunlight to perform well, with limited tolerance to shade.

Bahia
Shade Tolerance4 / 10
Centipede
Shade Tolerance5 / 10

Similarly, Centipede Grass requires about 4 to 6 hours of sunlight but can handle light shade, surviving with slightly less sun if needed.

Appearance

Which one looks better? You decide.

When choosing between sods like Bahia (pictured top) and Centipede (pictured bottom), personal preference plays a significant role, but understanding the nuances of each type's appearance can guide your decision. Here's what to consider:

Bahia close up imageCentipede close up image

Bahia Grass stands out with its airy, light green blades, providing a durable and somewhat rougher lawn that can handle the hustle without needing much pampering.

Centipede Grass, with its unique light green shade and soft leaves, creates a laid-back, low-growing lawn that feels easy underfoot and is fuss-free to maintain.

Drought Tolerance

Which one needs more water?

Bahia Grass boasts excellent drought tolerance, with deep roots that help it stay resilient and green even in prolonged dry periods.

Bahia
Drought Tolerance9 / 10
Centipede
Drought Tolerance6 / 10

On the other hand, Centipede Grass offers above average but not great drought tolerance, often bouncing back from dry conditions once regular watering is resumed.

Takeaway: If you're located in a somewhat dry and arid geographic region and are looking for a grass that can handle drought-like conditions, Bahia is the better option between Bahia and Centipede.

Grow Zones

Cold or warm weather - which do they prefer?

Bahia is well-suited for growth in warmer climates. The ideal temperature range for laying Bahia sod is between 70°F and 90°F.

Bahia
warm zones
Centipede
warm zones

Centipede is well-suited for growth in warmer climates. When it comes to laying sod, the ideal range for Centipede is also between 70°F and 85°F. If you choose to lay outside of the ideal range, you can still have success, but it may take a longer time to esablish and require a bit more maintenance.

As you may have noticed, both Bahia and Centipede thrive under pretty similar climatic conditions!

Traffic Tolerance

Which sod handles heavy foot traffic better?

Bahia Grass is tough and can handle a fair amount of foot traffic with its deep roots, making it not the worst choice but also not the best choice for backyards and play areas.

Bahia
Traffic Tolerance6 / 10
Centipede
Traffic Tolerance4 / 10

On the other hand, Centipede Grass has moderate foot traffic tolerance and is best for lower-use areas, but it can handle occasional gatherings and games in the yard.

Takeaway: If you're looking for a grass that can handle heavy foot traffic, Bahia is the better option between Bahia and Centipede.

Establishment Rate

Which grass grows faster?

Bahia grass, valued for its adaptability and low maintenance, establishes at a moderate rate and offers a durable lawn option especially in sandy and infertile soils.

Bahia
Establishment Rate5 / 10
Centipede
Establishment Rate5 / 10

Centipede grass is a slow-growing, low-fertility requirement grass that gradually establishes to form a low-maintenance, dense carpet ideal for acidic soils in warm climates.

Net, net - if you're looking for a grass that establishes quickly, they are pretty similar in this respect, so feel free to go with either one!

Pest & Disease Resistance

Which handles pests better?

Bahia Grass boasts robust resistance to many common lawn pests and diseases, making it a hardy choice for less-than-ideal soil conditions.

Bahia
Resistance8 / 10
Centipede
Resistance6 / 10

Centipede Grass has moderate resistance to pests and some fungal diseases, but it can be susceptible to nematodes and needs care to prevent issues.

TLDR - if you're looking for a grass that wards off pests and disease, Bahia edges out the competition.

Let's Pick a Winner

Which sod is better, Bahia or Centipede?

Alright it's time to count the scores up.

Most blogs or articles are going to give you a wishy washy "it's up to you" speil. That is definitely true. You'll need to choose based on your geographic conditions and what you like most looks-wise.

That being said, if we just compare the scores based on the following measures. Higher is better in this case.

  • Average Cost: 8 for Bahia, 4 for Centipede
  • Shade Tolerance: 4 for Bahia, 5 for Centipede
  • Drought Tolerance: 9 for Bahia, 6 for Centipede
  • Traffic Tolerance: 6 for Bahia, 4 for Centipede
  • Establishment Rate: 5 for Bahia, 5 for Centipede
  • Pest & Disease Resistance: 8 for Bahia, 6 for Centipede

Drumroll please...

All in all, Bahia comes out on top with a score of 40/60 versus 30/60 for Centipede.

Thanks for reading! If you have any feedback or corrections for us, please email our editor at editor@sodcalculator.com.