Understanding St. Augustine Grass in North Texas.  

St. Augustine grass is an extremely beautiful lawn for partially shaded properties under the right conditions. It is known for being a dense thick turf and has been widely used throughout North Texas for a very long time. When everything is just right, it can be a spectacular lawn that makes us proud!

Unfortunately, it comes at a cost and turfgrass professionals throughout the southern states have long been challenged with the very sensitive nature of this grass type. The fact is that St Augustine is rarely planted at professionally managed sites such as golf courses, athletic fields, or high-profile commercial properties. Here at Nutri Green Lawn Treatment & Weed Control, we strive to educate our friends and neighbors in the community with the best professional guidance available anywhere!

With that in mind, the following is intended to assist and educate our beloved clients to the best of our ability as expert turfgrass professionals.

St. Augustine is subject to numerous environmental issues such as winter freeze damage, summer drought stress, or excessive rainfall. Unfortunately, these environmental conditions are beyond anyone’s control and can cause permanent injury or loss. Replanting of new grass can become necessary when environmental conditions are unfavorable. Additionally, St. Augustine is highly susceptible to a variety of difficult to control diseases such as Take All Root Rot, Brown Patch, Gray Leaf Spot, Pythium Root Rot and St. Augustine Decline. It is also prone to non-preventable chinch bug infestations in the warmer season that can wreak havoc on St. Augustine lawns quickly before control measures can be effectively implemented. Due to these characteristics, St. Augustine turf is not generally recommended when initially selecting the best grass type to plant for a new lawn. For partially shaded lawns, Zoysia grass is preferred due to its less problematic characteristics.

Recommendations For Best Results

Mowing Practices

Unlike other grass types, much of the delicate St Augustine root system is above the soil level. It is critical to NOT mow St Augustine grass too low at any point throughout the year, as this can destroy the delicate root system and cause serious injury or loss of grass. Maintain cutting height of 3 to 4 inches throughout the year.

Mowing Frequency – Mow every week during the heavier growing season, usually April through September. Mow only if needed when growth is slower, usually March and October.

 

  • Cutting Height – Never mow St Augustine grass lower than 3 inches at ANY time of year.
  • Mow with a Sharp Blade – Keep your mower blades sharp and never cut more than 1/3 of the grass blade.

Watering: Finding the Right Balance

St Augustine grass has a higher watering requirement in the warm summer months than other turf species, however overwatering during the cooler spring and fall temperatures often triggers disease activity. It is best not to water St Augustine too early or late at night if possible. Ideally you would like your watering cycles to be completed shortly after sunrise so that the grass does not remain wet for extended periods during the cool nighttime temperatures.

 

  • Spring – Water 1-2 times per week for 15-20 minutes per station. However, during periods of significant rainfall, avoid watering.
  • Summer – Water 2 times per week for 35-45 minutes per station.
  • UNDER INTENSE HEAT OF 95+ DEGREES DURING WATER RESTRICTIONS: On your two allowed weekly watering days: water for 30-45 minutes between 12 am & 10 am AND 20-30 minutes between 6 pm & 11:59 pm. Additional manual hand watering of dry spots is necessary when temperatures exceed 90 degrees. This deep watering schedule will improve drought tolerance, while complying with city guidelines.
  • Fall – Water 1-2 times per week for 15-20 minutes per station. However, during periods of significant rainfall, avoid watering.
  • Winter – Water once per week for 10 minutes (Yes, water your dormant lawn, it makes a big difference)

Disease Management

As mentioned above, avoid overwatering when temperatures are cool. Maintain good drainage to avoid excessive moisture collecting. If significant disease activity is observed, your Nutri Green specialist may recommend specialized fungicide applications.

Improving Soil Quality

One of the best ways to enhance your soil is by adding nutrients to make it better suited for growing healthy grass. You can enhance your soil’s quality if you: Resolve issues with clay by enriching it with minerals like gypsum. We recommend our Gypsum Soil Treatments twice per year for addressing soil quality.

Annual Grub Worm Treatment

Addressing grub worms with pre-emptive preventative treatment is important. Our standard Lawn Care program includes a once per year Grub Worm treatment. This additional Grub Control Service not only aids in preventing grub worm damage, but we also treat non-preventable surface feeding insects as well such as Chinch Bugs, Army Worms and Bermuda Mites should they occur.

Please never hesitate to contact us anytime you have questions about your St Augustine. We are always eager to help!

Nutri Green Lawn Insect Control Services

Our standard Lawn Care Program includes a required, once-a-year Grub Control application. This is an important part of our comprehensive lawn care treatment program that not only helps to keep your lawn weed-free but also protects it from turf damaging insects.

Schedule your lawn care program today and keep your lawn protected!

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