St Augustine + Sand = Why

Discussion in 'Florida Lawn Care Forum' started by Turf Dawg, Mar 7, 2011.

  1. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    IMO - Bermuda would make more sense, for it has the longest root depth, can be cut short, appears to thrive in our environment (just ask anyone who had it invade their SA).

    But this is just my opinion. What would the sustainability of our green industry be here in FL, especially CFL and NFL, if we moved away from SA?

    It needs to be cut year round (lawn turds) , it needs fert and of course we are all aware pesticides (L and O guys) to keep it looking nice, it needs to be watered (irrigation guys), and of course when the home owner does not do any of the above - they get to call us lawn turds to replace their lawn for them with sod, as seed is not available.

    SA is the greatest gift to all of us lawn turds in FL is my opinion.
  2. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969


    Yes to have all Bermuda in Florida would be a great shot in arm for Certified Operator that Know what they are doing. I cut my Bermuda yard 8 times this last year and it never grew higher than 6 inches. Yep I could make a small fortune Chemically Mowing Bermuda yards and at the same time McDonald's would have a whole new list of former Yard Boys wanting to flip burgers. Can you say "Welcome to McDonald's, May I help You"
  3. How are so many guys having chinch problems??? My yards are irrigated properly, fert properly, and I have yet to have problems with chinch. Secondly, mike, if you get rid of St Augustine the guys who have plant and hort knowledge(not saying you don't) would come to the forefront as you can xeriscape or use natives in yards here and still make them look good.
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  4. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    What does Bermuda look like at that height Ric? It looks so funny growing at 4 or 4.5 inches in the SA, I figure that must look a little crazy.

    No need to as long as SA remains the turf of choice here. It allows me to make a very comfortable living - and enjoy more vacation weeks than most folks.
    If this was not the case here, I would move back to the midwest, enjoy lower real estate prices and cost of living, say goodbye to the heat, and know that juan and paco are not coming to my customers lawns because it is too damn cold in that region:laugh:
  5. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    Let the homeowner control the irrigation - you will have chinch bugs most of the time, Let the homeowner go with the cheapest L and O company and they will have chinch bugs at some point. Broken sprinkler head in a area close to a radiant heat such as a sidewalk or a driveway, and the homeowner either not care or not notice - you have chinch bugs. Home owner over ferts the lawn because they have not cared for it all year, but decides that they "got some catching up to do" to be the same as their neighbors - lots of new growth - you have chinch bugs.
    Last year was the worst because lots of homeowners were grabbing bifen products from the box stores not knowing any better. Had one customer insist that he did not have cinch bugs when I told him because he had just did a application the week before with one of the said products - the infestation was so bad you could see them actively on the sidewalk without disturbing or roughing up the turf!

    This is partially true - but I am still becoming accustomed to FL landscapes, and even if I was had a great knowledge base, I am not sure that this would be a sustainable.
    I think I do well compared to a lot of my competition here as far as being able to inform the homeowner about issues such as weeds in their lawn, pest issues, proper sod installation - but it is still a hard sell sometimes asking for a premium when juan and pace or joe unemployment is willing to cut their lawn for $25 dollars less a month and not charge them during the winter;)

    Diamond - if I remember correctly, you are in juniper island? If so, you income level is different than most of our residents here in interior CFL. Estates which you say you target - are far and few here in comparison, not to say that there are not some, but in terms of % - there is a difference.
  6. gregory

    gregory LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,074

    i will take SA over other turf down here. i only had bahia looked good for the first year or so but like ric said with the high ph where i am at looked like crap in year 2 and 3. to me SA is not very hard to take care of. alot of my friends think i spend all weekend in my yard but i dont. i check my sprinklers every 6 months and i walk around my yard just to give it the once over. i can see alot and remember things when i mow like weed problems bug problems.

    i laugh when i go to HD and see how much they sell bug killer for and its just bifen at a really low ai makes me shake my head and laugh. esp knowing what me and ric used to buy bifen xts for.

    i dont know about bermuda so i cant say much about it. but it would take alot to get rid of my acre of SA and switch to something else.
  7. Turf Dawg

    Turf Dawg LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,719

    We do not have Bahia in my area [as to speak of] but we have something that looks very similar, it may even be same species but different cultivar, called King Ranch Bluestem. Our problem with it is that it will grow anywhere. The better shape the turf is in the worse it does, but that is still pretty well, and the hotter and drier the better it likes it. At one point the TXDOT used it for roadside soil erosion and it took off from there.

    I am relly suprised that ya'll do not have a bunch of problems with Take-All Patch with soil PH as high as what you say it is.
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  9. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    Turf - the PH Ric posted of 9.5 is not common in the lawns I have checked here in CFL - the soils in my area tend to be in the 6 to 7.5 range. Some homes I do see actually lower PH leaning towards the 5ish range, which are also homes that tend to have very mature trees in them, i am assuming the leaves have made the soil more acidic.
  10. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638


    Whatever you posted brother, did not transmit.:confused:

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