I am most definitely into my St. Augustine grass, girl.

My St. Augustine grass is my passion.

A few years ago, I wrote all about the man, the myth, the legend…..

The man responsible for my grass obsession.

You can read about him here and here.

But, TODAY…….

I am here to share all the tips, tricks, and hard work I put into keeping my grass in tip top shape.

Growing and caring for St. Augustine is not for the faint of heart.

This grass requires maintenance and patience.

If you are willing to work with it, it will reward you with such lush, soft, and healthy grass, you will want to walk barefoot all day long.

Which I highly recommend.

Start your day standing barefoot in your grass.

No matter what grass you grow.

That simple process of standing in your grass in your bare feet for a few minutes each day will ground you, center you, and start your day off right.

This post does contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through my links, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

St. Augustine grass - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass – J Dub By Design™

So, Let’s Get Started

Me and My Stihl Trimmer - J Dub By Design™
Me and My Stihl Trimmer – J Dub By Design™

I will share all of my tips and tricks for my St. Augustine grass maintenance.

EVERYTHING

Watering.

Fertilizing.

Mowing.

And,the products and tools I’ve used for years to keep my grass looking its best.

Watering

St. Augustine grass in the courtyard - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass in the courtyard – J Dub By Design™

I make sure my St. Augustine grass gets at least an inch of water each week.

If there is no rain in the forecast, I turn on the sprinklers.

I water in the early hours after midnight, and NEVER in the heat of the day.

Most of my grass is in full sun.

Turning the sprinklers on mid day is not only wasteful, it will scorch the grass – especially when temperatures are over 100 degrees.

Turning the sprinklers on at dusk can set you up for a fungus problem because the grass will stay wet throughout the night when the temperatures are cooler.

Fungus loves those conditions.

Now, if Mother Nature decides to bless me with a shower during a 100 plus degree day, that rain isn’t going to go all scorched earth on your grass.

When a rain storm comes, it naturally cools things off a bit.

So, rain is always best…… supplement with a sprinkler system.

Fertilizing

Me with my Scotts Spreader - J Dub By Design™
Me with my Scotts Spreader – J Dub By Design™

I try to fertilize my grass four times during the growing season.

The growing season for me is typically April through October.

Sometimes we get warmer than normal temps in March and November.

But I still stick to my typical growing season months.

It just makes things easier.

I typically fertilize the first week of April.

Then, I aim to fertilize every 6 weeks from that date.

However, if we start to go into a drought, I do not fertilize.

I don’t want to add additional stress to my grass.

I also try to time my fertilization days on the days we have good chances for rain.

So, when I say 6 weeks, this is always a rough estimate.

This year, I fertilized on April 1st.

Therefore, somewhere around the middle of May, I will fertilize again.

It may not be exactly on that date because I will be watching the forecast.

I want to time my fertilizer with a nice dose of Mother Nature’s glorious rain.

I hope she is reading this….I am trying to butter her up for the summer.

If we are getting some regular showers weekly, my third fertilization will be on or around the first week of July.

But, these last few years, the rain has disappeared at the beginning of June.

AND, we have been going into a severe drought with absolutely horrendous daytime highs.

So, I have skipped that third fertilization these last few years.

I do my last fertilization of the growing season sometime around the end of August through the first week of September.

This is usually when we start getting some decent rain showers again.

Fertilizer Products I Use

St. Augustine grass in the terraced yard - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass in the terraced yard – J Dub By Design™

I use Scotts everything.

My broadcast spreader is made by Scott’s.

I have had mine for over 10 years.

If you take care of it, it should last you decades.

Wash it out after you are finished and store it in a covered area out of the elements.

For fertilizer, my go to is Scott’s Southern Triple Action.

I love this product because it not only fertilizes, it takes care of fire ants, fleas, and army worms.

It also prevents several types of weeds such as dollarweed, clover, and dandelion.

After Christmas, you will start to see stores get ready for the spring.

That is when I buy what I need for my lawn.

I store the fertilizer in our garage out of the elements.

That way I am ready to go for the growing season.

My Grass Mowing Schedule

Honda self propelled mower - J Dub By Design™
Honda self propelled mower – J Dub By Design™

After I fertilize around April 1st, then I wait to mow.

I let the fertilizer do it’s job.

And, it does it very well as long as we are getting some rain.

This year, I did not mow a single blade of grass until April 22nd.

Yes, you read that right.

I waited three weeks to give my lawn its first haircut.

I mow my St. Augustine with a self propelled Honda push lawn mower.

You don’t have to use a push mower.

However, I use a push mower because my lawn is divided into 10 sections separated by stone terracing.

A riding mower is not practical for me around the house.

In addition, my mower’s wheels are set to the highest setting.

Many people like the lowest setting because they think it means they can go longer between mowing sessions.

WHY? The grass is so much shorter.

But, what they are doing is scalping their yards and causing immense stress to that lawn.

Scalped St. Augustine is a huge pet peeve of mine.

You want disease?

You want stress?

Then, by all means, scalp that lawn.

After I mow, I wait two weeks before mowing again.

It is always a TWO WEEK PERIOD.

I do not make exceptions…..unless it rains on my day to mow.

And, then I wait even longer.

When I have to wait to mow (Mother Nature gives me some rain), the grass will eventually put up a seed head.

These seeds are sterile.

St. Augustine does not grow by seeding, it grows and spread through runners.

But allowing it to put up a seed head, you are giving your St. Augustine a chance to flourish stress free.

St. Augustine grass seedhead - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass seedhead – J Dub By Design™

In fact, if you choose to sod your lawn with St. Augustine, I highly recommend leaving it alone until it puts up that seed head.

Meaning…….do not mow a single blade. Let it go.

You will have given your lawn the most beautiful start and it will reward you for years to come.

Back to my mowing schedule…….

If we are getting rain and I have been able to fertilize during the mowing season, that grass is going to get thicker and more happier.

Its also going to be a little harder to mow.

That is EXACTLY what I am going for.

When I mow, I rotate my mow direction.

The first time I mowed this season, I mowed in a counterclockwise circle.

The second time I mowed, I went in a clockwise pattern.

And, I continue this pattern throughout the growing season.

Changing up your mowing pattern keeps the grass from laying down on you and you get a cleaner cut each time you mow.

In addition, I do not bag my clippings.

Those clippings are FREE fertilizer gold and provide nutrients right back into my grass.

Equipment I Use

As I already mentioned, I use a Honda push mower.

I brought the one I used on my Argyle lawn to the Texas Hill Country.

This mower has been going strong for over 15 years.

You can not beat this engine.

It starts on the first pull, 98 percent of the time.

Honda now has an electric start push mower.

David surprised me with one, and it should be here any day now.

To edge and trim, I used the Stihl FS91R.

It’s also easy for me to start, an I can re-load the string easily.

After I mow each section of my yard, that’s when I do my trim work.

I like to use the Stihl trimmer to clean up any areas I missed with the mower.

I also make sure I always have my trusty pocket knife ready to cut the string to re-string the trimmer.

To fertilize, as I already mentioned, I use a Scott’s spreader.

Finally, I use this huge Stihl backpack blower to quickly clean off the driveway all year long.

But, to be completely transparent, I have yet to master starting it on my own.

I think its because I am left handed and the starter is in a awkward position for me.

I lose all my momentum.

So, David has to start the blower for me and that drives me crazy.

One word of caution, my Honda mower takes regular gas.

The Stihl takes a gas mix.

I make sure all my gas cans are different sizes and clearly labeled so I don’t get confused and use the wrong gas in my equipment.

St. Augustine Grass Problems

St. Augustine grass - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass – J Dub By Design™

I have one issue.

I have fungus in one area of my yard.

Once you get it, you can control it. You can’t eradicate it.

I use a Scott’s fungus product called DiseaseEX to manage the one area I have easily.

I apply regularly during the growing season and once my grass greens up, you would never know the fungus is there.

In fact, the problem area is in the photo above.

Can you see it? NOPE

This product controls brown patch, powdery mildew, Anthracnose, Necrotic Ring Patch, and many more types of fungus.

This product will also prevent fungus…….which is wonderful if you use a lawn service to maintain your lawn.

Your lawn can get a fungus from contamination.

So if you hire a lawn service, make sure they clean their equipment well before they mow your lawn.

You don’t want your neighbors fungus becoming your fungus.

If you mow your own lawn, you can spray your blades down with a mix of water and bleach in a spray bottle to keep from spreading any disease to other areas of your yard.

If you are going to sod a brand new lawn, fungus can be hidden in those grass pallets.

Make sure you are buying your sod from a reputable dealer that has a high level customer service policy for dealing with fungus……meaning they will replace the sick grass with high quality healthy grass.

Final Thoughts

St. Augustine grass in the shade next to stone stairs - J Dub By Design™
St. Augustine grass in the shade next to stone stairs – J Dub By Design™

I take great pride in my lawn.

I hope my tips and tricks help you with your own lawn.

If you have any comments or questions, you can drop them below.

I will do my best to help in whatever way I can.

And always………..Think Outside, No Box Required.

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