Sir Walter Buffalo vs Matilda Buffalo

Sir Walter Buffalo vs Sapphire Buffalo

How do you choose between the shade-tolerant buffalo grass brands?There’s plenty of conflicting information around, and it can be hard to know what’s important and accurate.

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Sir Walter Buffalo vs Matilda Buffalo

We have been looking at how different buffalo grasses compare. In this round, Sir Walter and Matilda go head to head and we explore some of the things to consider when choosing a buffalo turf for your lawn. In this article we compare the two soft leaf buffalo grass in the following categories:

  • least amount of thatch
  • shade tolerance
  • sun tolerance
  • drought recovery
  • wear and tear tolerance
  • winter colour
  • least seeding buffalo

So let’s find how how our two contenders fare in this battle between Sir Walter vs Matilda.

Least amount of thatch

Thatch can be a problem when it comes to your lawn, so what is thatch? The PennState Center for Turfgrass Science explains:

Thatch is a loose, intermingled organic layer of dead and living shoots, stems, and roots that develops between the zone of green vegetation and the soil surface. Thatch build up begins when turf produces organic debris faster than it can be broken down.

While a thin layer of thatch can provide insulation against extreme temperatures and fluctuations in soil moisture, thicker layers of thatch can heat up and dry out a lawn very quickly.

Sir Walter is a low thatch type of Buffalo grass. Matilda, on the other hand deteriorates when it gets spongy and can become patchy over time if exposed to too much sun.


Winner: Sir Walter

Shade tolerance

It is important to consider where you will lay your turf and what kind of conditions it will be subjected to. Will it have to deal with full shade, partial shade, or full shade? And if so, which turf will be best suited for this location?

So how well will our turf contenders tolerate shade?

There is not a lot of difference between the ability of our buffalo grasses to tolerate shade. Traditionally buffalo grasses have a high shade tolerance. However when it comes to shade tolerance, Matilda does slightly better than Sir Walter and might be the best choice if your lawn will experience a lot of shade.


Winner: Matilda

Sun tolerance

All plants need sunlight to grow, and grass is no exception — but too much sun can lead to your lawn drying out and potentially dying. If your site is going to receive a lot of sunlight it is important to consider the turf product with the greater sun tolerance.

Australia is a sunburnt country; so how will our turf contenders deal with the sun?

Winner: It’s a tie! Both Sir Walter and Matilda can tolerate the same amount of sun.

Drought recovery

In the same way that we need to consider sun and shade, if you are an area that is prone to drought you need a lawn that can not only tolerate lower water conditions but can bounce back when the rains return or you choose to irrigate.

Drought recovery is a particularly important consideration for Australian lawns.

In tests Matilda recovered from drought conditions more quickly than Sir Walter.

Winner: Matilda

Wear and tear tolerance

Can our turf contenders deal with wear and tear of foot traffic, kids, sports and pets?

Matilda is hands down the winner when it comes to recovering from heavy wear and tear, not only beating Sir Walter but a number of other buffalo grasses too.

Winner: Matilda

Winter colour

If you’ve taken the time to lay quality turf and maintained it, the last thing you want is to lose that luscious green colour in the cooler months.

How well will our lawn contenders keep their green colour in winter?

This is one of the key differences between Sir Walter and Matilda and will come down to the position of your lawn. Matilda keeps its winter colour better in full sun, while Sir Walter holds its own in partial shade.

Winner in full sun: Matilda

Winner in partial shade: Sir Walter 

Least seeding buffalo grass

Which of our two turfs will produce the least amount of seed?

Winner: Sir Walter

Overall winner

It’s a tie!

Think Matilda for a buffalo that holds its winter colour in full sun and can take a lot of wear and tear.

Think Sir Walter when you are after a low seeding buffalo grass that will keep its winter colour in partial shade and has a low amount of thatch.

Extremely satisfied…

“We have used and recommended Atlas Turf for the last few years and have been extremely satisfied. Kerrie and Neale grow exceptionally good quality grass of various varieties, that meet both our high standards as well as meeting our customers needs. Availability and delivery has never been an issue and their staff have always been very helpful. If you’re looking at new grass or looking to change suppliers, we would have no hesitation in recommending Atlas Turf.”

– Shelley Conasch, Feature Trees Australia

I would definitely recommend…

“…The turf was delivered and the delivery gentleman from Atlas even informed us, by eye that we had ordered too little turf, and recommended an amount we needed, and was spot on. The process from ordering, to delivering, to laying was all made easier by Atlas and all of their staff, and I would definitely recommend them to any friends or family.”

– Brendan, Sydney

Prompt and lovely to deal with…

“We used Atlas Turf to turf our whole yard, front and back. The staff on the phone were prompt, lovely to deal with and were very knowledgeable not only of their own product but also helped answer many questions about the preparation, maintenance and also a few tips to help lay the turf.”

– Brendan, Sydney

I am extremely happy…

“Just a quick note to let you know that I am extremely happy with my new Sir Walter Lawn. Thank you to the Great Service and Advice I received from all the staff at Atlas Turf.”

– David, Windsor

You were fantastic…

“Just wanted to send you a quick note to let you know how happy we are with our Lawn, right from the start you were fantastic recommending the best lawn for me since I have always lived in a unit it was all a bit confusing. I have a bit of a smile on my face when I walk out on the weekends and my neighbours are all having to mow every weekend but you were right the lawn you selected for me even in summer only needs a quick cut every 3 to 4 weeks to look awesome! Thanks again.”

– Kent, Quakers Hill