One of the most popular choices for lawns in the Southern parts of the United States, St. Augustine boasts an impressive ability to thrive in subtropical and tropical regions. This thick-bladed grass creates a beautiful, bright green lawn and has a propensity for fungal diseases. It grows easily in a favorable climate but, like any other grass, demands some maintenance to stay healthy and keep looking its best.
In this post, let us talk about a few useful tips on maintaining St. Augustine grass in your yard.
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Here are the most important tips you should follow when it comes to caring for your lawn.
One of the most impressive qualities of St. Augustine is that it doesn’t require a lot of mowing. However, if you want a lush lawn, you might have to do some work. Make sure you keep the turf blades 3-4 inches long; mowing shorter will lead to thinning and weed growth. You can mow every 5 days to 2 weeks depending on the weather and the time of the year. Summer months will demand more frequent mowing than fall and spring.
This grass is commonly grown in coastal regions which means it can tolerate frequent rains. If it doesn’t rain for quite a long time, you must wait for the ground to get completely dry before turning on the irrigation system. You can also consider watering if you see the blades folding or losing their natural color.
St. Augustine would generally require 1 inch of water per week, whether from rainfall or manual irrigation. If you are using a sprinkler, make sure you water in the morning so that the grass doesn’t burn in the sun or stay wet at night. Use a professional lawn sprinkler repair St. Augustine to keep your equipment functioning optimally. See that you don’t overwater this grass; lawns that stay damp for too long are prone to fungus development.
St. Augustine has thick grass with a tendency to develop thatch. A little amount of thatch is beneficial as it provides nutrients to the soil and turf as it breaks down. However, a thatch layer of more than 1 inch demands action or it will prevent the soil from absorbing air and humidity and impact the health and growth of the lawn.
If your St. Augustine lawn requires dethatching, consider renting a machine between spring and mid-summer. Make sure you mow the lawn to about 2 inches before running a rake or dethatcher across the turf. Collect and dispose of the thatch like you would do with clippings. Don’t forget to hydrate the lawn after the process to help it grow again.
Healthy St. Augustine lawns require regular applications of fertilizer to get the nutrients for optimal health. You can schedule the first fertilizing session at the beginning of the growing season and then complete other doses using the right lawn food. It is a good idea to feed after sodding and aerating during the spring and every six weeks during the growing season.
An important part of lawn care is maintaining the health of the soil in the yard. The soil under the grass can often get compacted which reduces its ability to retain and pass air, water, and nutrients to the turf roots. This is where the process of aeration proves to be useful. It involves punching holes across the lawn to break up the soil.
You might have to borrow or rent an aerator to complete this step. Make sure you wait after aerating to reapply any herbicide. It is advisable to aerate at the beginning of spring.
A well-managed St. Augustine lawn is likely to get crowded with unwanted grasses. Excessive weed growth is often an indication of stressful situations for the lawn like a disease, pest infestation, improper fertilization, or watering.
For weed control, you should only use a weed killer designed to work with this grass and follow the instructions given by the manufacturer. Homeowners should consider applying herbicide at the end of the spring season and reapplying in the fall before temperatures start dropping.
St. Augustine grass requires some maintenance and care to grow thick, green, and lush but a little work goes a long way. These tips should help you keep your lawn in its optimal health and beauty. You can seek additional help by hiring good lawn care services St. Augustine available in your neighborhood.