Easy Gardens Life

Centipede Grass vs Crabgrass

Centipede Grass vs Crabgrass

When you’re choosing between two different kinds of grass to plant on your lawn, it can be hard to decide which one to go with. 

You may want the health benefits of centipede grass and the disease resistance of Crabgrass, or maybe you want the cute feathery look of centipede grass with the fluffiness of Crabgrass. 

No matter which one you choose, you can rest assured that both are hardy enough to survive in nearly any environment. So which one should you choose? Keep reading to find out.

What Is Centipede Grass?

Centipede grass is a warm-season turfgrass that is common in the southern United States. This type of grass has a light green color and a medium-fine texture. It is a low-growing grass that only reaches about 6 inches in height. Centipede grass is known for being easy to care for and requiring little fertilizer or water once it is established. 

However, it will not tolerate shade, so if your yard does not receive full sun throughout the day, this type of grass may not be best for you. If you want to use centipede grass on your lawn, wide varieties are available with various heights and textures, as well as wide ranges of color shades from dark green to purple/lavender hues.

What Is Crabgrass?

Crabgrass (Digitaria sanguinalis) is an annual grassy weed that commonly invades lawns in the United States. It gets its name from its long, spindly stems that branch out and resemble a crab’s legs. 

Crabgrass germinates in late spring and grows rapidly, crowding out other lawn grasses. Once it matures and sets seed in early summer, it dies off, leaving behind a patchy, ugly lawn. If you have or suspect you have Crabgrass, be sure to address it quickly before it takes over your whole yard.

The Appearance of Centipede grass

Centipede grass is a low-growing, light green grass with narrow leaves. It grows in a dense mat and has a coarse texture. The blades of centipede grass are slightly rolled, and the tips are blunt. 

The stems of this grass are red or purple. Its roots can reach up to two feet deep into the soil and produce large amounts of oxygen. Centipede grass needs a lot of sunlight to grow, so it does best in warmer climates where temperatures remain above 40 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Appearance of Crabgrass

Crabgrass is an annual grass that sprouts from seed each spring. It has a prostrate growth habit, meaning it grows close to the ground. The leaves are wide and flat with a light green color. The stems are also light green and can grow up to 2 feet long. Crabgrass flowers are small and yellow-green in color. Flowers bloom from late summer until fall. 

The crabgrass plant will eventually turn brown and die before winter sets in. In contrast, centipede grass is perennial, which means it lasts for more than two years without needing to be reseeded or replanted every year. Leaves of centipede grass are shorter than Crabgrass but still have a wider width than most other types of lawns.


Centipede grass is a warm-season grass that’s native to China. It’s known for being low-maintenance, which means it doesn’t require a lot of fertilization or watering. It’s also resistant to most pests and diseases. However, centipede grass does have some drawbacks. It’s not as tolerant of shade as other grasses and has a relatively short root system, which means it can’t compete with weeds as well as some other grasses. 

On the other hand, Crabgrass is a cool-season grass, meaning it thrives in cold weather but may die back during the summer months. It requires very little water and can tolerate dry conditions much better than centipede grass. The downside is that Crabgrass typically needs fertilizing about once every two weeks during the growing season.

Drought Tolerance:

Centipede grass is much more drought tolerant than Crabgrass. This is because Crabgrass has shallow roots that dry out quickly, while centipede grass has deeper roots that can reach moisture even in dry conditions. 

Centipede grass is a better choice if you live in an area with little rainfall, or if you’re trying to conserve water. It also does well when planted next to other turf grasses such as fescue and Bermuda, so it’s a good option for areas where natural lawns are susceptible to weed invasions. 

Centipede grass is not nearly as aggressive as Crabgrass, so it won’t overtake your lawn when it gets seeded on top of existing turf as it would if you had Crabgrass. 

Plus, it’s much easier to control the spread of centipede grass by mowing it shorter than the height recommended for Crabgrass. All in all, this makes centipede grass the perfect choice for homeowners who want to maintain their lawns themselves.

How to Grow Centipede Grass?

Centipede grass is a warm-season lawn grass that is common in the southern United States. This type of grass is light green and forms a dense, low-growing turf. It is known for being easy to care for and requiring little fertilizer or water once it is established. 

To grow centipede grass, start by preparing your soil with compost and then sow your seeds in late spring or early summer. Once the seedlings have emerged, be sure to mow them regularly to encourage growth. You should fertilize 3-4 times during the first year of planting centipede grass and only one time per year after that.

How to Grow Crabgrass?

Crabgrass is an annual grass that can be a real pain to get rid of once it takes over your lawn. But if you’re up for the challenge, here’s how to grow it. 

First, till your soil in early spring to a depth of about two inches. Then, broadcast crabgrass seed over the entire area you want to cover. Be sure to rake the seed into the soil to have good contact with the ground. You should also lightly water the area. 

Afterward, keep up with the watering by applying 1-2 inches of water per week (depending on the rain). You’ll start to see green shoots appear after 3-4 weeks. 

The plant will then begin producing flowers and eventually produce small round berries around September or October. When this happens, it means they’ve grown large enough and are ready to harvest.

Which One is Better in Your Area?

Do you have a problem with Crabgrass on your lawn? You’re not alone. This pesky weed can be difficult to control. But there may be another option for you to consider – centipede grass. 

This type of grass is more tolerant to Crabgrass than other types of grass, making it a good choice for those who live in areas where Crabgrass is a problem. But what are the other benefits of centipede grass? And how does it compare to Crabgrass? Keep reading to find out. 

  1. Centipede grass is resistant to weeds, meaning that it won’t need as much maintenance as some other types of grass do. 
  2. It’s also tougher against drought and hot climates, making it an excellent choice for Southern states or those living in dry climates. 
  3. It has the ability to grow fast enough that you’ll need less fertilizer and water when planting this type of grass.
  4. Some people say that centipedegrass has a fuller, more plush look. 

Which do you prefer – crabgrass or centipede grass? Do you have any personal experience with either of these two types of grass? Let us know in the comments below.


If you have a lawn, you’ve probably had to deal with Crabgrass at some point. This invasive grass is difficult to get rid of and can quickly take over your lawn if you’re not careful. Centipede grass is a good alternative to Crabgrass because it’s less invasive and easier to control. 

However, centipede grass does have some drawbacks, such as its inability to tolerate shade and its slow growth rate. Ultimately, the best grass for your lawn depends on your specific needs and preferences.

William Kirkwood

William Kirkwood

Hi, I'm William K, an avid gardener, and outdoor enthusiast. I help busy people get into gardening, create natural and good-looking home decorations, and suggest outdoor activities and tools explore nature.