Niners' head groundskeeper Matt Greiner said he had been watching the sod for a couple years and was impressed with how it stayed green late into the winter, requiring less rye grass "seasoning" on top that's usually needed to yield the sharp, dark green color.

"Most importantly, the Bandera Bermuda has good tensile strength so when a player plants his cleat, it holds together better," Greiner told the team's Website earlier this week.

Despite the hoopla locally, it's not yet widely known nationally. Kevin Morris, executive director of the prestigious National Turfgrass Evaluation Program, said he had never heard of Bandera. And because it's specially grown, even the hardiest of Silicon Valley suburbanites looking for a perfectly manicured lawn can't expect to pick it up at their local Orchard Supply Hardware.

The 49ers declined comment or to provide access to the turf until a media event Monday after the installation is complete.

Contact Mike Rosenberg at 408-920-5705. Follow him at

49ers new turf, by the numbers

Total size of turf, including sidelines and back of end zones: 106,325 square feet
Size of playing surface: 68,000 square feet
Size of each roll of turf shipped to the stadium: 42 inches wide by 115 feet long, weighing 1,400 pounds
Trucks required to ship the turf to the stadium: 12
Height of grass: quarter-inch now; will grow to three-fourths of an inch
Installation: requires 10 workers two days to lay down the field
Source: 49ers, West Coast Turf