Best Grass Seed for Missouri

Missouri has a subtropical climate characterized by cool winters, hot summers, and lots of short-term temperature volatility.

This climate also varies based on how far north or south you go.

All of this variability can make growing a healthy lawn tough, so its important to pick the right type of grass and care for it properly.

As midwest artificial grass installers servicing St. Louis and Kansas City, we’re also going to highlight the benefits of going synthetic in difficult grow climates like Missouri.

Here’s our top picks for grass seed in Missouri and why.

The Best 5 Grass Seeds for Missouri

In general, cool season grasses such as the turf-type tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass, and perennial ryegrass do very well in Missouri.

Southern regions of Missouri can also benefit from warm season grasses like bermuda and zoysiagrass.

Here’s more on each type, along with the pros and cons of each.

1. Turf-Type Tall Fescue

Turf-type tall fescue is a popular choice for Missouri lawns due to its resilience and adaptability.


  • Drought Resistance: Turf-type tall fescue has deep roots, enabling it to access water from deeper soil layers and withstand dry conditions.
  • Shade Tolerance: It performs well in both full sun and partial shade, making it versatile for different lawn areas.


  • Texture: Some varieties may have a coarser texture than other cool-season grasses, which might not be preferred for all lawns.
  • Heat Tolerance: While it manages well in cooler climates, it can struggle in the extreme heat, particularly in the southern parts of Missouri.

2. Kentucky Bluegrass

Kentucky bluegrass is renowned for its fine texture and rich color, making it a favorite for many Missouri homeowners.


  • Aesthetic Appeal: Offers a lush, dense turf with a beautiful blue-green hue.
  • Cold Tolerance: It thrives in cooler temperatures, making it ideal for the Missouri climate.
  • Self-Repairing: Possesses the ability to spread and fill in bare spots due to its rhizomatous growth.


  • Water Requirement: Requires frequent watering, especially during hot, dry periods.
  • Maintenance: Needs regular feeding and mowing to maintain its appearance.

3. Perennial Ryegrass

Perennial ryegrass stands out for its rapid germination and establishment; making it a great choice for many Missouri residents.


  • Quick Establishment: Germinates faster than many other grass types, providing quick ground cover and erosion control.
  • Fine Texture: Offers a fine leaf texture, creating a smooth lawn surface.
  • Disease Resistance: Generally resistant to many common lawn diseases.


  • Cold Sensitivity: Less cold-tolerant compared to other cool-season grasses, which might be a problem in northern Missouri.
  • High Maintenance: Requires regular mowing and fertilization to maintain its appearance.

4. Bermuda Grass

In contrast to the three cool-season grass seeds we’ve mentioned so far, Bermuda grass is a warm-season grass that thrives in the southern regions of Missouri.


  • Rapid Growth: Establishes and covers the lawn quickly due to its aggressive growth.
  • Heat Tolerance: Excels in hot temperatures, ideal for Missouri summers.
  • Drought Resistance: Once established, it’s quite resilient in dry conditions.


  • High Maintenance: Requires frequent mowing, watering, and fertilization to maintain its appearance and health.
  • Cold Sensitivity: Tends to struggle in cooler temperatures and can go dormant and brown in winter.
  • Shade Intolerance: Does not perform well in shaded areas, preferring full sun.

5. Zoysiagrass

Like Bermuda grass, Zoysiagrass is a warm-season grass that thrives in southern Missouri climates. Unlike Bermuda, it requires less maintenance.


  • Low Maintenance: Requires less frequent mowing and watering due to its slow growth and drought tolerance.
  • Dense Growth: Forms a thick, carpet-like lawn that can suppress weeds and withstand wear.
  • Shade Tolerance: Better adaptability to various light conditions compared to Bermuda grass.


  • Slow Establishment: Takes longer to fully cover the lawn, requiring patience during the initial growth.
  • Cold Sensitivity: Similar to Bermuda, it can turn brown and go dormant in colder winter temperatures.
  • Thatch Buildup: Can accumulate thatch, requiring dethatching maintenance occasionally.

The Verdict

We’ve listed a variety of cool season and warm season grasses for Missouri, each offering key benefits for Missouri habitats. While they are all great options, we crown the turf-type tall fescue as the best grass seed for Missouri due to its durability, versatility, and relatively low maintenance requirements. It does great and looks great in both northern and southern Missouri.

Artificial Grass in Missouri

Due to the extreme volatility of Missouri’s climate, you’ve got some work ahead of you no matter what type of grass seed you select.

We’ve got an alternative solution for those of you that don’t want to invest much time in maintenance or money on water bills:

Artificial grass.

Artificial grass lawns are especially popular in Midwest climates like Missouri that have extreme heat / cold throughout the year. It requires very little maintenance, and looks beautiful year-round.

With synthetic turf, your only maintenance is the occasional cleaning.

Sure, we’re a bit biased. We install artificial grass in Missouri metro’s like St. Louis and Kansas City.

But just something to consider.

The Bottom Line

Missouri’s climate is known for its humidity, cool winters and long hot summers. Cool season grasses do best for northern climates, and several warm season grasses can thrive in the south.

Our top pick for real grass in Missouri is the turf-type tall fescue due to its versatility and adaptability.

Our top pick for fake grass is American Greens turf installation (that’s us). If you want to learn how to ditch the lawnmower, chemicals, grass/mud stains, and water bill; give us a shout. We’d love to chat.