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Spring Seeding vs. Fall? How to Grow New Grass in Memphis, TN and Northern MS

Lawn seeding is a valuable service. It can help fill in bare spots or thin areas and help keep your lawn looking thick and healthy. But when it comes to growing new grass, you want to have the best possible success. That might have you questioning when to have this important service performed. 

Although a lot of homeowners assume that they can seed any time of year, there is actually a best time to seed your lawn. 

Surprising to many people, it is not the spring. Spring grass seeding in Tennessee and Northern Mississippi can be performed (and certainly some do it) but it’s not going to get you the best results—and can even cause some complications with your lawn care program. 

Because we want you to get the best possible results (and to understand what makes the most sense for your lawn), we’ve put together this guide to help lead you in the right direction.

Spring Seeding vs. Fall

There are two key reasons why seeding in the spring can set you up for disappointment. Let’s take a look at each of them.

Growth Trouble

Although homeowners tend to associate spring with the “growing season,” the truth is, new grass will not have much time to grow before temperatures become very hot and difficult for new grass to survive in. 


In Memphis, TN and Northern MS, the hot and dry season can be intense and we find that those who perform spring grass seeding do not see much success as it quickly starts to die. It can take many months for a new lawn to establish a substantial root system and begin to deal with heat and drought stress. A new lawn simply cannot handle it.

Crabgrass & Broadleaf Weed Trouble

The other reason that we prefer not to perform spring grass seeding is the fact that it interferes with our ability to utilize pre-emergent crabgrass control. The pre-emergent products that we are applying in order to stop crabgrass seeds from germinating will also prevent grass from germinating. In other words, we can’t apply these products to a newly seeded lawn meaning that you’ll wind up dealing with a weed problem.

lawn filled with crabgrass

Plus, if you have young grass plants growing, you can also not spray selective weed control for broadleaf weeds such as dandelions, clover, etc.

Though you might be thinking about skipping weed control, it’s generally better to hold off on seeding, get the weeds under control, and then address the thin areas or bare spots in the fall. When you let the broadleaf weeds and crabgrass take over, you’re generally creating an even bigger problem that will be difficult to address down the road. 

The Best Time to Seed your Lawn

In Memphis and Northern Mississippi, the best time to seed your lawn is in the fall. Because the weather conditions are ideal for germination (the air is cool, the ground is moist, but the soil is still warm) it allows for the best possible growth. Your lawn will start to develop a healthy root system that will allow it to become established before the hot and dry summer weather rolls around.

Healthy grass roots

On top of that, seeding in the fall allows us to run the full program and utilize valuable pre-emergent products to prevent weed takeover.

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Is There Ever a Time for Spring Grass Seeding?

Even after reading this, you still might be feeling anxious about filling in those bare spots or dealing with a lawn that’s more dirt than it is grass. Even though we tell homeowners that spring grass seeding is not ideal, and will likely not get them the results they desire, we sometimes still have people who want to give it a shot. 

When this is the case, it is all about expectations.  


We have performed this service for some homeowners but have set them up with realistic expectations (the very information that we’ve just shared above). Not only will their grass struggle to survive (and much of it may not), but they’ll have to deal with weeds.

The vast majority of the time that leads people away from even attempting spring seeding. Those who are incredibly desperate for grass might also consider laying sod, a service that our sister company Michael Hatcher & Associates can perform. 


And here in the Mid-South, if you’re going to attempt spring seeding without an irrigation system installed, this could be quite the obstacle. 

We Want the Best for You & Your Lawn

All of this comes down to the fact that we truly want the best for you. While there are plenty of lawn care companies in Memphis, TN and Northern Mississippi that will do whatever their customers want whenever they want it, we believe in educating homeowners and helping guide them toward the best decision for their lawn. After all, you are investing in a professional in order to be able to rely on their expertise.

Master Lawn lawn technician consultation

At Master Lawn, you can count on us to always steer you in the right direction. Our objective is always to provide you with honest advice and to be able to help you make the best decisions for your lawn. After all, for your investment, you deserve to be able to know you have a lawn care professional that you can trust.

Ready to stop worrying about the proper timing for seeding (or other lawn care services) for your Memphis, TN or Northern Mississippi property? Talk to a lawn care expert, choose from 3 program options, and become the master of your lawn.

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Image Sources:  sod

Michael Hatcher

Michael Hatcher is president of Michael Hatcher & Associates.

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