It is frustrating to plant a lawn, only to find the grass brown and dying. This can happen to all grass types, including St. Augustine grass. With some care and attention, you can restore a healthy lawn.
Brown patch is the most common cause of death in St. Augustine grass. It is a fungal disease that turns the grass brown in the spring or fall. The blades typically have spots that look like cigarette burns. It grows in circular-shaped patches that range from a few inches wide to several feet.
It is easier to keep your St. Augustine grass healthy and prevent brown patch than it it to treat it. Water your lawn only when the soil is dry. When you water it, do so in the morning because evening water invites disease. Avoid using fertilizer with a lot of nitrogen in the fall because the fungus will attack the new grass that grows. When you mow, take all the clippings from your yard to limit spread.
You may be able to save your grass with fungicide sprays. Apply them when it's warmer. According to Texas A & M University, a good guideline is to use fungicide when the nighttime temperatures are 70 degrees F. If it doesn't work, dig up the dead St. Augustine grass, till the soil and replant seeds.
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