How to Plant & Prepare St. Augustine Grass in Florida

Overview

Florida's subtropical climate provides the perfect growing conditions for St. Augustine grass. The bright green blades and dense growth of this grass create lush lawns and turf throughout the state of Florida. Most varieties of St. Augustine grass will knit into a tight turf that prevents weeds and minimizes infestations. It does not do well in cold temperatures and requires winter fertilization for quick recovery in spring. Start by purchasing St. Augustine plugs for your lawn.

Step 1

Immediately water St. Augustine plugs upon arrival. Keep plugs moist and in a partially shaded area until ready to be put in the ground.

Step 2

Douse your lawn with water 24 hours before planting plugs. It takes less time to plant plugs when the soil is moist and easy to work with.

Step 3

Use a hand shovel or plugger to dig holes (slightly larger than a plug) in a checkerboard pattern across your yard. Keep in mind that the closer the plugs are together, the faster they will grow and fill in your lawn.Place one scoop of starter fertilizer in each hole. Starter fertilizers are specially formulated for root growth of grass plugs.

Step 4

Place one scoop of starter fertilizer in each hole. Starter fertilizers are specially formulated for root growth of grass plugs.

Step 5

Place a plug in each hole and cover the root ball with about 1 inch of dirt. Eliminate any air pockets by firmly pressing on the dirt around the base of each plug.

Step 6

Soak the dirt around your plugs with water. St. Augustine grass plugs should be watered every day for up to two weeks or until roots are firmly established. St. Augustine needs supplemental watering in periods of low rainfall, up to 4 inches each month.

Step 7

Regularly fertilize your St. Augustine grass with a formula high in nitrogen and iron. Specially formulated grass fertilizers are available at most nurseries and provide specific application instructions.

Tips and Warnings

  • Damage to St. Augustine grass occurs at temperatures below 20 degrees Fahrenheit.

Things You'll Need

  • Plugs
  • Hand shovel or plugger
  • Water
  • Starter fertilizer
  • Grass fertilizer

References

  • Texas A&M University: St. Augustine
  • Lawn Plugs: How to Plant
  • American Lawns: St. Augustine
Keywords: st. augustine grass, grow grass, florida grass

About this Author

Kelsey Erin Shipman has worked as a travel writer, poet, journalist and award-winning photographer since 2004. Her work has appeared in various newspapers, magazines and journals. Shipman has also authored three collections of poetry: "Cold Days," "Bastante" and "Short Poems." She earned a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from Southwestern University.