Popular Pre-Emergent For Centipede Grass


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Centipede grass is a low-maintenance, durable, and roughly textured type of grass.

This pale green grass is indigenous to the hot and wet areas of China.

It is drought tolerant and grows easily in acidic, sandy soils spreading slowly over time.

centipede grass dollar spots problems
Centipede grass

However, when centipede grass overgrows, it can become a nuisance because it is susceptible to weeds.

In such a situation, it is wise to introduce pre-emergent to help tame the situation.

What to Expect? By the end of this article, you will have a good idea of the best pre-emergent to use on weeds growing in centipede grass.

Some Common Weeds Found in Centipede Grass

Giant Foxtail weed in New England
Giant Foxtail

Let us briefly discuss some common weeds that may be a menace to centipede grass.

They include the following.


This fast-growing weed occurs on parts of your lawn where the presence of grass is limited.

It may also develop in the cracks on a sidewalk.

It has a reddish-brown stem along which leaves grow opposite of each other.


This grass takes root in frequently mowed lawns.

Most of its species grow as annual grass weeds which reproduce by seed. Its identifiable characteristics vary by species.


However, most species have a prostrate growth habit with broad leaves that easily stand out from centipede grass.


These weeds have a seed head that looks like the tail of a fox.

The seed stands upright under which is the stem.

This stem flattens out with the base turning into a reddish-brown color.

Factors To Consider When Buying Pre-Emergent for Centipede Grass

When purchasing, you may be asked to choose between several types of herbicides.

In such a scenario, it is important to know how to get a product that fits your needs.

This depends on several factors, the most important of which are discussed below.

Personal Preference

The ease of application of the said product comes into play here.

Pre-emergent may either be sprayed or applied as granules.

Spraying, of course, does cause even herbicide distribution.

Granules, on the other hand, will require more water during application.

Temperature Of the Soil

This has a significant impact on the performance of the pre-emergent.

The herbicide should be applied before the soil temperature reaches 50-55°F for 5 days consecutively.

It is imperative to invest in a soil thermometer to determine the temperature of the soil.

Annual Amount of Rainfall

The amount of rain is an important factor to consider when buying pre-emergent.

Essentially, the more the rain, the more effective the herbicide.

However, this only applies when the pre-emergent is applied before the rain.

The water would soak up the herbicide and incorporate it into the soil, making it more effective in weed prevention.

The Type of Weed

The regular types of weeds differ by location.

The type of weed a particular pre-Emergent is suitable for is usually listed in the product’s labeling. 

Whether Or Not The Pre-emergent is Selective

A selective pre-emergent is one that is intended to kill specific types of weeds and not affect other plants.

On the other hand, a non-selective pre-emergent will destroy whichever plant it comes in contact with, including your centipede grass.

So, you ought to be careful when you are choosing a pre-emergent to avoid killing your grass.

5 Popular Pre-Emergent for Centipede Grass 2022

1. Quali-Pro Prodiamine Pre-Emergent Herbicide

Key Features

  • It is granular
  • Propamidine is the primary component
  • Weighs 5 pounds

This pre-emergent comes in granular form, so you should mix it with water at a precise rate during the application, as per the provided instructions.

A 5-pound bottle may be used on an area of up to 44 000 sq ft. In addition, it is excellent when it comes to broadleaf weed control.

With flexible application, you can use it in both spring and fall. This is ideal for enabling you to have season-long weed control.

It may be used on lawns, ornamental beds, trees, and golf courses.


  • Its flexible application ensures season-long weed control
  • Very effective against weeds
  • Prevents weed seeds from germinating


  • It does not kill already established weeds

This product is specifically designed to be effective against weeds such as knotweed, annual bluegrass, chickweed, foxtail, and spurge.

This is as a result of having 65% Propamidine as its active ingredient. This ingredient is quite effective in the prevention of germination of weed seeds by killing them off at the rooting stage.

However, it is only effective against germinating weed seeds and does not destroy already existing weeds.

2. Southern Ag Atrazine

Key Features

  • Applied by spraying
  • Weighs 8.82 pounds
  • Destroys young and grown weeds

This herbicide is sprayed onto centipede grass and is very effective against broadleaf weeds. Moreover, it suppresses the growth of crabgrass- which is quite a menace.

Not only does this grass host different viruses, but it also reduces corn yields by up to 20%.

This product should be sprayed onto the grass with accuracy while avoiding overlap.

As such, it should not be used with hose-end sprayers as these are not made to be accurate. For the best results, one should apply this product in early spring.

After application, do not water the centipede grass for 72 hours for this product to be effective.

However, water is needed in around 7-10 days for the product to effectively stop weed seed germination.

Additionally, this product is very effective against weeds that are already grown.


  • Very effective against broadleaf weeds and crabgrass
  • It can be used against already established weeds
  • Affordable


  • Not suitable for use with hose-end sprayers
  • It may also require a few weeks before it can reach its full potential

It is also very important to ensure that pets do not come into contact with grass that is freshly sprayed.

Atrazine may adversely affect an animal’s sexual development in the event of direct contact. They should, therefore, only be allowed into the treated area once it is completely dry.

On the downside, this product may take a few weeks before it can reach its full potential.

3. Scotts Weedex Prevent With Halts-Crabgrass Preventer, Pre-Emergent Weed Control For Lawns

Key Features

  • Pendimethalin is the active ingredient
  • Kills young and germinating weeds
  • Weighs 10.3 pounds

This product is quite effective against crabgrass, even preventing its growth all season long. To achieve this, you should apply it in early spring.

For weeds such as poa annua, which appear during winter, the application should be made in the fall.

It is also quite effective against broadleaf weeds such as foxtail, spurge, and oxalis.

It has Pendimethalin as its active ingredient, and this is very toxic both to people and pets.

Make sure to wear protective clothing during the application.

Also, do not allow people or pets into the treated area until it dries out completely.


  • Effective against weeds all season long
  • It is an all-weather pre-emergent


  • This product does not kill weeds that are already grown
  • Its active ingredient is toxic to people and pets

This product’s performance is not affected by the elements enabling you to apply it at any time.

However, it is meant to prevent the germination of weed seeds and not kill weeds that are already grown.

4. Bayer Celsius Wg 10 Oz

Key Features

  • It weighs 10 ounces
  • It is granular
  • No high-temperature limitations

Designed to control over 150 weeds, this is a great product to use.

It is highly effective even against weeds and grasses that are quite resistant. Some of these include chamber bitter, common purslane, dollarweed, carpetgrass, and doveweed.

It comes in water-dispersible granules and is very easy to use. Furthermore, it is extremely safe on centipede grass.

This product has no high-temperature limitations, making it suitable for diverse geographical regions.


  • This product is effective against more than 150 weeds
  • It comes in easy-to-use water-dispersible granules
  • It has no high-temperature limitations


  • It should not be applied under very humid conditions

On the contrary, its effectiveness may be reduced if it is applied in the presence of heavy dew or rain.

Too much moisture may dilute the granules and render them ineffective altogether.

5. Southern Ag- 12401- Surfan A.S- Pre-Emergent Herbicide


Key Features

  • Weighs 2.64 pounds
  • It is selective
  • Kills weeds before they germinate

This product is quite effective when it comes to preventing weed seed germination. It may be used on both turf and ornamental grasses.

Best places to use on include industrial sites, landscape ornamentals, non-bearing trees, and vine.

It is very effective as a selective pre-emergent herbicide in controlling broadleaf weeds and annual grasses.

To use, it is surface-applied over the grass or lawn in sufficient amounts to cover the whole target area. In addition, one must be keen during application to ensure even distribution over the target area.

As a pre-emergent, it kills the weed seeds in the ground before they germinate. This means that it is not effective against weeds that have already grown.

For these, one would require a post-emergent weed killer, which is a separate product altogether.


  • An effective pre-emergent herbicide
  • It may be used on both turf and ornamental grasses
  • It is selective, so it will only destroy weeds and spare your centipede grass


  • It does not kill weeds that are already grown
  • The product is very thick and may clog your hose-end sprayer

However, this product is very thick and may clog your hose-end sprayer.

To counter this, you will need to add water to the sprayer tank.

You may also have to keep shaking the hose-end sprayer during the application, which may or may not be a nuisance to you.

When To Apply pre-emergent On Centipede Grass

The best time to apply pre-emergent on centipede grass is when the soil is warming up, and this is during late winter or early spring.

This is when weed seeds start to germinate, and pre-emergent works by altering the germination of weed seeds.

Perfect temperature for fertilizing a lawn

You can also use pre-emergent during fall to inhibit the germination and growth of cold season weeds like dandelion and henbit.

Key Takeaway: The best time to apply pre-emergent is when weeds are in the germination stage.

Final Thoughts

Centipede grass is a very good candidate for a lawn as it is low-maintenance and very durable.

On the other hand, like all grasses, it is prone to weeds and other grass infestations that may need to be eliminated.

Pre-Emergent herbicides prove to be quite effective in the control and elimination of these weeds by killing them off at their germination stage.

To get the right Pre-emergent for your lawn, you would need to consider several factors. The most important ones have been highlighted in this article.

If you would like to make a purchase or get more information regarding the products reviewed in this article, feel free to visit the links provided.

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