“St. Augustine is easier to care for than other grass varieties available in our area” says John Cross Certified Landscape Professional and Pest Control Operator at Paradise Pest Control & Fertilization…
To properly maintain St Augustine there are three areas that need to be performed well. Proper nutrients with weed control along with insect and disease control need to be applied at proper rates and frequencies, proper cultural and mowing practices along with consistent watering.
The grass needs to be fertilized on a regular basis; our program uses a liquid fertilizer that is formulated for the sandy soils of South Florida. A weed control product should be used when needed. The best weed control is a thick lawn, however there may be some areas where weeds appear and need to be treated. Insect and disease control may be needed also depending on the time of year. Typically we see insects such as sod webworms and cinch bugs in the spring and summer and diseases such as grey leaf spot and brown patch in the fall and winter time.
Mowing should be done where no more than 1/3 of the grass blade should be removed at a time. Typically mowing a couple of times a month in the winter months and up to a weekly service in the summer months. It is beneficial to leave the clippings on the lawn. This allows the nitrogen in the leaf to be recycled and used again. Careful that the grass is mowed frequently enough as not to leave clumps of mowed grass on top. This can lead to thatch that is not good for St Augustine.
Consistent watering is a must to create the beautiful lawn that you desire. South Florida receives a lot of rain during the year but there are several times that it is crucial that the grass is irrigated. In late April up until the raining season and in late summer when the temperatures are near 90 degrees and the grass endures drought conditions. Even during the summer when it does not rain for 3 or 4 days additional water is needed. This is the key difference for the lawns that look ok compared to the beautiful lawns in the neighborhood.