Mississippi Grass Seed
Growing grass in Mississippi seems arduous due to the high rainfall, hot temperatures, and difficult soil conditions. But, Mississippi agriculture has been successful for centuries, from the Native Americans to today. In fact, 17.4% of Mississippi residents currently work in agriculture.
So despite the potential challenges of growing seeds in Mississippi, homeowners can develop a lush, healthy lawn. Before choosing a grass seed, consider that Mississippi has specific growing characteristics and soil conditions.
Whether you select a cool or warm season grass type, this guide will teach you everything you need to know about planting the right seed for Mississippi lawns.
Growing Conditions and Characteristics
Mississippi’s location in the southern United States provides an ideal environment for warm-season grass types to thrive. The state has three main plant hardiness zones: 7b, 8a, and 8b.
Plant hardiness zones describe potential extreme low temperatures. For Mississippi, these temperatures range from 5 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
In the southernmost region of the state, a small portion of Mississippi land has a plant hardiness rating of 9a. This plant hardiness zone signals a range of possible minimum temperatures from 20 to 25 degrees.
Mississippi has a variety of earth layers, from clay to acidic sandy soils. Clay soils are considered a problematic ground type to work with agriculturally because they hold high amounts of water. Poorly drained soils can drown the seeds and inhibit their ability to grow appropriately.
The state soil of Mississippi is the Natchez Silt Loam which can be found on 171,559 acres of land in the state. Natchez Silt Loam is a fertile soil used for growing crops and livestock pastures. This soil makes an excellent growing environment for an attractive lawn.
When to Plant Grass Seed in Mississippi
Mississippi has a warm climate, with temperatures reaching 91 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. During the winter season, temperatures can drop as low as 33 degrees.
Before planting your grass seed, check the weather forecast for rain. Mississippi receives an above-average amount of yearly rainfall, 57 inches, and the rain could wash away the grass seeds before they’ve had a chance to establish their roots.
Warm-season grasses should be planted from March to May. This time of year allows the seedlings to settle into the ground and flourish in the summer sun.
Cool-season grasses should be planted once the high heat temperatures have subsided. For Mississippi, this time is typically between September and November.
Best Types of Lawn Grasses for Mississippi
There are various options for grass seeds in Mississippi. Warm-season grass types will thrive in the hot weather, but some cool-season grass types can handle the hot temperatures and high rainfall.
Warm-Season Grass Types
In terms of warm-season grasses, Bermuda Grass checks all the boxes to cultivate an attractive lawn in the southern United States. This drought-tolerant grass species can withstand Mississippi’s hot summer months. In addition, Bermuda Grass can endure heavy foot traffic and is commonly used on golf courses.
One important aspect of this green turfgrass to consider is its growth habit. Bermuda Grass can spread aggressively, so this turf will need frequent mowing and lawn care maintenance.
Buffalograss is a low-maintenance option for home lawns compared to other warm-season grasses. Typically, lawn grass seeds requiring little effort are slow to grow, and Buffalograss is no different. This seedling can take up to two years to form a moderately dense sod.
Once the Buffalo Grass is fully grown, it will sprout in early summer when soil temperatures are between 60 to 80 degrees. This grass is drought resistant and creates a beautiful, medium green-colored turfgrass.
Zoysia Grass makes an excellent lawn sod for homeowners with families because it can withstand heavy foot traffic. This grass will sprout in the early spring and remain green into the fall season.
While this seed will take one to two years to reach its full potential, Zoysia Grass is drought tolerant and can withstand light shade. This high-quality turf will flourish into a thick carpet grass during the warm seasons of Mississippi.
Cool-Season Grass Types
Tall Fescue is one of the most tolerant cool-season grass blends. This grass type can withstand foot traffic, partial shade, and high heat climates.
Tall Fescue will grow into a gorgeous dark green color with a medium texture. It will leave your lawn looking beautiful in the cool weather, whereas warm-season grass types will turn brown.
Kentucky Bluegrass is considered high maintenance relative to other cool-season grass types.
While you can grow Kentucky Bluegrass almost anywhere in the United States, you’ll need to consider the growing conditions of this grass to ensure it will thrive. Kentucky Bluegrass prefers high fertile soil to create a dense root system. In addition, this grass seed needs about 18 - 25 inches of rain annually.
If you live in the small region of Mississippi where the soil hardiness is rated 9a, Kentucky Bluegrass is not the best grass seed for your lawn. The warmer temperatures will inhibit the growth of this grass.
One of the best grass seed options in the cool season category is Perennial Ryegrass. This seed quickly germinates and sprouts into grass, so it is perfect for when you want a beautiful light green turf fast.
Perennial Ryegrass is more resistant to disease when compared to other grass types, so you won’t have to worry about fungus overtaking your lawn.
Mississippi residents have a wide selection of grass seeds to choose from that can thrive despite the state’s agricultural challenges.
Planting your grass seed during the recommended time frame (March to May for warm-season grasses, September to November for cool-season grasses) will ensure that high summer temperatures will not destroy your newly planted sod.
Remember to keep an eye on the weather forecast to find an ideal time for planting. A heavy Mississippi rainstorm could wash away fresh seeds if they haven’t germinated yet.
Given the amount of time and effort it takes to plant grass seed, you’ll want to make sure you pick high-quality seed blends for maximum potential success. Nature’s Seed offers excellent sources to help create a thriving lawn. Use our Seed Selector Tool to learn everything you need to know about planting in your region and finding the best lawn grass seeds.