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Fertilizer recommendation in Austin texas

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by cleanitup, Mar 26, 2008.

  1. cleanitup

    cleanitup LawnSite Member
    Messages: 1

    Any advice on what products i can use on my residential lawns that have st.augustine grass. I want to kill/control the weeds but i also want to bring the grass up healthy and strong. Im trying to stay on the more basic/less complicated end of the spectrum but im willing to move up to see real results. Thanks
  2. Honeybee Texas

    Honeybee Texas LawnSite Member
    Messages: 16

    Austin soils have a high concentration of phosphorous as it is, so if you use many commercial grade fertilizers like weed n' feed that have a high P, you are going to overload the root systems (1) and create run-off into the water supply (2). A way to solve high phosphor build-up is to spread about a 1/4 - 1/2 inch of manure. This will of course bring in foreign weeds.

    The best method is to build healthy soil. Weeds hate healthy soil. For St. Augustine, you should push compost applications on your customers and in Feb. and Oct. push corn gluten meal as a pre-emergent. Keep this up for a season and you will see drastic (good) results.

    This is expensive though, so the shortcut is to do a foliar spray monthly with liquid seaweed and micronutrients (Medina HastaGro has a great product for this).

    Also, St. Augustine loves iron. You can find small bags of Copperous (Iron) at local garden shops. Add this once or twice a year and the grass will be a deep, rich green in no time.

    Many people use the theory that "the more the better" when it comes to fertilizer. What happens is you spoil the grass and it can't sustain nutrition on it's own. It's the difference between eating a handful of vitamins or a well-balanced meal. Or even fast food vs. home cooking. You can notice that a person can eat twice as much fast food (by volume) than home-cooking, because the body needs to consume more to pull what little nutrition is actually in fast food. It's the same with fertilizing your turf and plants. Work the soil with compost, compost tea, seaweed, fish emulsion, micronutrients, etc. and it will actually need less over time because it has found the nutrition it needs. Use fertilizer 6 times a year and you actually starve the grass to death. It may green up, but it will suffer in the winter and the summer heat, and it will be susceptible to weeds and pests.


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