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St Augustine - looking for additional tips

2651 Views 11 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Darth_V8r
Hello all :) I am looking for some additional tips specifically for ST Augustine Lawns. I neglected a centipede lawn for four years and paid dearly for it this spring with large patches of fungus and grub infestation.

New St Augustine Sod - May 4th
Traditional St Augustine from Woerner Turf

Since then I have performed the following:

- Watered properly with irritation at 3am with three zones
- Threw down some Milo
- Treated for fungus with Heritage G last week - starting to get grey leaf spot
- Treated for fungus with Eagle 20ew last week
- Through down Merit for grubs yesterday
- Mowing at 4" in the back although 3 5/8th looks way better for the front.
- Applied the RGS the LCN was pimping.. along with the micro green etc..

I have area's of the lawn that look absolutely stunning but I have other's that are lagging with very little vertical growth and look extremely flat and depressed. Many of these spots were yellowing but since the heritgage/eagle combination have come back although very slowly. I get many of my tips from the LCN but I realize there is a huge difference with his sandy Florida soil an my tilled up clay/topsoil/river sand I was able to amend in April. I guess my question is what else can I be doing?

Items on my mind:
- Throwing down some corn meal? Long term all of these fungicides cannot be healthy
- Purchasing some River Sand (not silt) can I start leveling the spots that i missed? Is this healthy on new St Aug?
- Some have mentioned peat moss but in my experience our gumbo soil just turns to mush with peat..

I would really like to know what other's are doing to keep their St Augustine healthy :)

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You can throw down cornmeal, although I wouldn't waste the time right now. Organic lawncare isn't really important when you're laying down Class 3 fungicides. Just monitor your grass to see if it kicks the disease (it will look worse before it improves though so keep that in mind).

The LCN is obviously a good resource, but there are much more targeted resources applicable to you, including Randy Lemonn (very helpful website), a comprehensive gardening book with a ton of lawncare resources put out by the River Oaks Gardening Club of Houston, and the lawncare books put out by Dr. Howard Garrett aka The Dirt Doctor.

Do not apply sand until the grass roots are established. You don't want to smother it right now.

Do not apply peat moss for the exact reason you said.

DO apply an Iron supplement. I would suggest a hose-spray iron supplement like Ironite. Because you are watering so much, the iron is going to leach out of the grass at a rapid rate. I can tell because I see slight discoloration. It's a sort of hidden secret to remedy this you apply iron.

I would also apply a soil activator like Medina. Do this twice a week for at least a month or two.

And finally, you're doing it right so don't overthink it. And whatever you do, don't just do shit for the sake of doing it. You're already working hard on your sod project and I understand the desire to just sit at the computer and try to think up other shit to make it grow faster and get established, but it takes time brother and you've got to nurture it like a child because St. Augustine is the most finicky grass I've ever dealt with.
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Also, if you get your disease under control, go to ACE or somewhere and get yourself a little more tame fungicide. I use both of the fungicides you mentioned and like them a lot, in particular Eagle 20, but if you have healthy sod you don't want to be putting that stuff down if you can help it. Get something like Fertilome Systemic Fungicide II from ACE and apply that as a preventative. If the grass gets sick, then go back to the nuclear option.
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