How To Maintain A St. Augustine Lawn

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This article will teach you how to maintain a St. Augustine Lawn
by Terry O'Leary · Zone 8A · 10° to 15° F to Zone 10B · 35° to 40° F · Lawn Care · 0 Comments · October 31, 2010 · 3,029 views

Palmetto St. Augustine Maintenance

Below are suggested management practices designed as a guideline to assist lawn care professionals and homeowners in the maintenance of a St. Augustine lawn. Location, terrain, soil type and condition, age of the lawn, previous lawn care, and other factors affect turf performance. For these reasons, the following management practices can be adjusted to suit your particular home lawn conditions.


Mow Palmetto St. Augustine grass with a rotary-type mower set to cut at approximately 2-3 inch height. Try not to remove more than 1/3 of the leaf at any one cutting. Catch and remove clippings if possible.


Spring - When grass begins to green up in spring apply a Centipede & St. Augustine fertilizer, such as 18-0-18. Broadcast fertilizer using a rotary-type spreader following spreading rates recommended on bag.

Summer - In mid-summer apply 18-0-18 again, if necessary. If turf appears yellowed this may indicate chlorosis and an application of iron using a product such as Iron-Plus can help for deep greening. Broadcast fertilizer or iron granules using a rotary-typespreader following spreading rates recommended on bag.

Fall - In early to mid fall apply a Fall Feed/Winterizer, such as 5-5-20, preferably containing a weed preventer such as Barricade. Broadcast fertilizer using a rotary-type spreader following spreading rates recommended on bag.


Though drought tolerant, St. Augustine might like infrequent deep watering during prolong periods of dry weather. Do not over-water (avoid standing water for any period of time). A gray-green color and wilted, folded, or curled leaves indicate that it is time to water.

NOTE: Always water during the early to late morning hours and never at night. Watering at night will often lead to fungal development.

Weed Control

Pre-emergent - Apply a granular preemergence herbicide such as Team 2G in early to mid February to prevent the emergence of spring weeds such as crabgrass. Late spring, summer applications of preemergence herbicides may also be applied.

Post-emergent - To kill weeds that have emerged postemergence herbicides can be applied. Atrazine is the herbicide we recommend for use on St. Augustine lawns. Apply postemergence herbicides only when weeds are present and make sure to wait until three weeks after the lawn is green. Be sure the product is labeled for use on St. Augustine and always be careful to follow mixing and applications and instructions on product label. Spot treating is recommended.

Thatch Removal

Periodically it may be necessary to remove accumulated thatch and debris. This is best accomplished in the late winter - just before turf turns green in spring. Scalp or rake heavily and remove debris.

Terry O'Leary

Meet The Author

Terry O'Leary - Terry has been involved in golf course management since 1996. There isn't much he doesn't know about turf grass.

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St. Augustine. Grass, Lawn, Maintenance, Care

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