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preemergent

or pre-e·mer·gent

[pree-i-mur-juh nt]
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adjective Horticulture.
  1. of or relating to seedlings before they emerge or appear above ground: a preemergent weed-killer.
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noun
  1. a preemergence chemical, as a herbicide.
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Origin of preemergent

First recorded in 1955–60; pre- + emergent
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018