Care of St. Augustine Grass

Overview

St. Augustine grass is a course turf that has wide, deep, blue-green blades and it is not for every region. St. Augustine grass is limited to growth in a small portion of the United States, including all of Florida, Western Texas, South Carolina and Southern California. It is highly susceptible to thatch, which is time consuming to remove. Additionaly, a strict schedule should be adhered to address other manitenance issues such as watering and fertilizing throughout the growing season.

Step 1

Mow St. Augustine grass beginning in the early spring, when it turns green, at a height of 2-½ to 4 inches. Leave the grass clippings on the lawn, unless the remainders are large clumps. Continue to mow the grass every five to seven days throughout the remainder of the growing season, until November.

Step 2

Apply a nitrogen-based fertilizer in May, 1/2 lb. for every 1,000 square feet. Apply a second application of fertilizer in late June or early July and a final application in mid-August.

Step 3

Begin a weekly watering regimen in June and continue through August. Water the soil 4 to 6 inches deep.

Step 4

Apply a pre-emergent herbicide by March 1 to keep weeds under control. Manage summer, perennial and broadleaf weeds with a post-emergent herbicide in June. Follow the label instructions for dosage details.

Step 5

Dethatch St. Augustine grass when thatch reaches more than ½ an inch in height. Remove the layer of the decomposed material with a power dethatcher.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not exceed 3 lbs. of fertilizer in an annual growing season.

Things You'll Need

  • Lawnmower
  • Fertilizer spreader
  • Water sprinkler
  • Pre-emergent herbicide
  • Post-emergent herbicide
  • Power dethatcher

References

  • Lawn Care Guide: Dethatching
  • University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture: St. Augustine Grass
Keywords: st. augustine grass, st. augustine lawn, st. augustine maintenance

About this Author

Stephanie D. Green is a freelance writer with over 10 years of experience. Green holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and enjoys writing parenting, gardening and human interest articles. Her work has been published in lifestyle and trade publications including Draft Magazine and Savannah Magazine.