Tifdwarf Bermuda, a natural dwarf mutant of Tifgreen Bermuda, was officially released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Georgia Coastal Plain Experiment Station in April, 1965. Tifdwarf Bermuda’s anthers are yellow and shed no pollen. Its stigmas, racemes, and panicles are smaller than those of Tifgreen Bermuda, but otherwise are identical. Tifdwarf Bermuda has smaller and shorter leaves, stems, and internodes and establishes slower than Tifgreen Bermuda when sprigged at the same rate. Tifdwarf Bermuda has a darker green color than Tifgreen Bermuda and requires less fertilizer to give a comparable degree of greenness. It is popular for putting turfs and bowling greens. The purple basic plant color that helps to keep Tifdwarf Bermuda dark green in the summer becomes very noticeable when temperatures drop in the fall. As a consequence, Tifdwarf Bermuda takes on a purplish cast that is objectionable to many.
Tifdwarf Bermuda will tolerate closer mowing and makes a faster putting turf than Tifgreen Bermuda. Its softer leaves and fewer seed heads also contribute to its superior putting qualities. When properly managed, Tifdwarf Bermuda greens are comparable to bent grass greens. Its ability to make a good turf under very close mowing has made Tifdwarf Bermuda a very popular grass for bowling greens wherever Bermuda grass is adapted.
Tifdwarf Bermuda appears to be equal to Tifgreen Bermuda in disease resistance. Its softer leaves and slower growth rate seem to make it more susceptible to insect and nematode injury.
Tifdwarf Bermuda is more shade tolerant than Tifgreen Bermuda but is more susceptible to competition from weeds. Tifdwarf Bermuda also has a little lower herbicide tolerance than Tifgreen Bermuda.