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Bermuda Yard--->St. Augustine, how to do it?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by mowerman87, Jul 11, 2008.

  1. mowerman87

    mowerman87 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 75

    I have a customer with bermuda in the front and st. Augustine in the back. There is a big tree on one side of the front preventing the bermuda from getting enough sun. So now he wants the whole yard to be st. Augustine. Do I need to till up the whole front (yikes, big job plus sprinkler heads to worry about) or can I just scalp and lay down the new sod on top of the bermuda? That seems almost too easy and it has to be done right or I'll be paying down the road.
  2. TforTexas

    TforTexas LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 260

    No you cant just scalp the Bermuda down then lay St Augustine on top of it. The roots of the new sod will not penetrate down through the old sod even though it's been scalped down, you need to be at bare dirt. Plus the Bermuda will come back and grow up through the St Augustine.
    That doesnt mean you have to till up the yard though. I would spray the lawn with Roundup or Prosecutor Pro, wait 10 days and then spray it again so you make sure you've gotten good coverage and have killed it all. Then taking a sod cutter and cutting out the Bermuda sod should leave you with a pretty level planting area. You may need to do a little touch up grading with hand rakes. Then plant your St Augustine sod then fertilize with a starter fert and water well.
  3. Toy2

    Toy2 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,924

    The company that did mine scalped the front, raked it all up added some type of fertilizer before the sod was layed.....worked perfect....
  4. mowerman87

    mowerman87 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 75

    Is there some kind of hybrid Bermuda seed that can handle shade better that I could put out? That was the client's question, not mine. I doubt it but thought I should ask first.
  5. easygrass

    easygrass LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    You could do this kill with round up , sclap yard, bring in a mix of top soil with compost spread 1/2 " and lay sod.
  6. Baseballer1100

    Baseballer1100 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 220

    When removing Bermuda could you skip the roundup and go straight with the sod cutter? Or will the Bermuda return?
  7. RAlmaroad

    RAlmaroad LawnSite Silver Member
    from SC
    Messages: 2,248

    Well to start with, I hate Bermuda Grass. Scalping it won't kill it. The stuff has roots I think a hundred feet deep. That said, hit it with a good slow acting herbicide. Roundup will burn the top and will probably not be systemic enough to get down to the roots. Check the stock at Lesco or maybe one of the guys will know. For sure, Crossbow will knock it out, but here again I'm not sure of the root kill. After you get that done, I'd till it as deep as possible. I use a cultivator behind a Kabota and cut it deep. Rake it off and lay your St. Augustine. Apply a good liquid fertilize with Micro-nutrients, and keep it watered. The old "Bitter-Blue" variety can't be beat. However "Floratram" has some desirable qualities but is a bit touchy on several of the weed herbicides.
    Keep it watered deep and thoroughly over the next two weeks. Remember St. Augustine loves Nitrogen like pirates love rum.
  8. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,765

    To kill bermuda when it is not wanted, Fusilade at label rate + glyphosate at label rate. Do this after it has not been mowed for a week. Spray it, then wait 2 weeks and spray it again. Crossbow will set it back but not remove it completely. Once the bermuda is dead, then prepare and sod as RAImaroad says. One more thing, always mow the st augustine at 3" or more. If the st augustine is cut short, the bermuda will have the advantage and take over the lawn.

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