What Type of Grass Should I Plant in Raleigh, NC?

For Raleigh, NC homeowners, figuring out which type of grass is best to plant in your lawn can be tricky. There are so many factors to consider; everything from drainage, sunshine, to the terrain can be a potential determinant for what to fill your yard with and where. Different grass types thrive in different environments.

North Carolina can be divided into three major regions: the mountains, the piedmont, and the coastal plain area. These three regions differ in determinants such as climate, elevation, and humidity. Depending on where homeowners live depends on which grass types thrive where.

Much like grass types in Nashville, TN, grass types in Raleigh, NC can be divided into two main categories, warm-season or cool-season grasses, and branch off from there. Cool-season grasses do better in the cooler times of the year, thriving in temperatures from 65 to 75 degrees. While warm season grasses, are best adapted to to temperatures between 80 to 95 degrees.

Mountain Region Grasses

The Mountains have some of the most significant climate fluctuations in the Southeast. Take two cities – Highlands and Marshall – just separated by a two hours’ drive into consideration. Certain towns around Highlands are wet enough to be considered rainforests and have waterfalls everywhere. Whereas Marshall sits at the north end of the French Broad River basin. And it’s actually one of the driest areas in the entire state of North Carolina because most of the rainfall is squeezed out by the Basalm and Smoky mountains. All things considered, homeowners should either do their research or consult with a professional before deciding on a grass type in the Mountain Region.

Piedmont Region Grasses

Piedmont is French for “foot of the mountain”. The piedmont region is filled with rolling hills and sometimes is referred to as a plateau. Because the elevation doesn’t deviate as much as the Mountain Region both warm-season and cool-season grass types thrive in this region.

Cool-season varieties

  • Tall fescue
  • Kentucky bluegrass
  • Perennial ryegrass
  • Fine fescue

Warm-season varieties

Coastal Plains Region Grasses

The Coastal Plains Region stretches from the sandy farmland of the Inner Coastal Plain to the state’s Outer Banks. Typically warm-season grass types work best here due to the nature and climate of the area.

  • Bermuda
  • Zoysia
  • Centipede
  • St. Augustine

Additional information may be required to make an educated decision on which grass type to use for your new or existing lawn. Hopefully these facts can help you make a conscious decision or at least get you started on the right track when it comes to pinning down what kind of grass type to use in your lawn.

Questions about lawn care in Raleigh, NC? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

LawnStarter participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. LawnStarter may earn revenue from products promoted in this article.


Jake Hill

Jake Hill grew up working for his dad's landscaping company, and spent over 6 years covering the lawn care industry for LawnStarter. His expertise has been featured in The Huffington Post, Realtor.com, Homecity.com and more.