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PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2005 8:49 am 
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Location: Weatherford,TX
Just an opinion but I believe GAR in an earlier post hit on the problem - the weird weather. St Augustine loves hot weather. It does not like the cool nights we have been having. On the other hand, the weeds thrive in this weather.

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PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2005 11:24 pm 
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Mr. Clean wrote:
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
...the only reason St Aug gets thin is from getting too dry.

In your haste to dispense your advice, you appear to make an incorrect assumption, that is my lawn is a mono-culture of St. Augsutine. Not the case as I have a mixture of Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Tall Fescue and the noted mixture of various weeds.


First of all your grass mix is immaterial. You were complaining about St Aug and I was giving suggestions for your specific complaint. Secondly, as long as we're being hasty, you forgot to give the full quote. I said, "barring insects or disease," and then picked up with the rest of the quote. If you are doing everything else right, I would look for insects and/or disease. I've seen some rain but too much was never an issue for St Aug thinning out. I think you're left with disease and insects. The fact that you do not have a monoculture would make it harder to detect and diagnose disease and insects. At the same time you probably have a multiculture turf simply for the reason that there will be times when one grass or another weakens. This way you have other grasses to fall back on for the look you want. But still, I've never seen a multiculture turf that was not completely overtaken by St Aug under proper watering.

Mr. Clean wrote:
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
I'm going to suggest that you reevaluate your definition of when the grass is showing signs of stress.

Another wrong assumption on your part. That being that I am not competent enough to "read" my turf which at this location has been under my (total organic) management for better than a decade. The Tall Fescue, which in my experience, is far more sensitive to lack of moisture and of course heat has suffered no ill effects.


I did not mean to say you were incompetent. I don't care if you have a Ph.D in St Augustine turf drought evaluation. I was suggesting no matter how competent you are, that you make a change in the way you evaluate your St Augustine for signs of dryness. If you're convinced the rain last year is your only problem and not your watering, bugs, or disease, then I'm out of suggestions.

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 Post subject: Grass
PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2005 7:31 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
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Location: Hubbard,TEXAS
Dchall,

You've mentioned fescue in some of your advice.. This may be a dumb question, but I've wondered about fescue in TX. Is it grown for grazing purposes? It's recommended in other states, but I've wondered about it working for us. Thanks for your help.

Pat Akin


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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2005 7:51 am 
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Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
In South Texas probably 99% of the grazing grass is coastal bermuda. Personally I think they should add some variety, but it's hard to convince a successful producer that the grass his cows like and grows like a weed needs to be supplemented.

Go to www.rossfarms.com and I think Betsy has a list of the different grasses she grows up north of Austin. She has 2 acre pastures that she grows different grasses in a lot of them. Because she has tried so many different grasses, she has more practical knowledge about forage than most ranchers.

George Brannies has let his ranch go back to nature with nothing but native grasses growing. He seems to be pretty successful, too. When you stop buying seed, fertilizer, herbicide, insecticide, and supplemental feed, and you put up a lot of fences to keep the cattle herded together, it's funny how your costs go way down. George might be retired now.

Someone else to check with would be Richard at http://homesteadhealthyfoods.com. He grew a continual stand of alfalfa in Fredericksberg for 7 years. He finally mowed it to the ground because everyone kept telling him you can't grow alfalfa down here.

When you get north of Austin and Fredericksberg I don't have any good data about the grasses they grow. You might check over on the farming or ranching forums.

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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2005 10:28 am 
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Location: Arlington
Dchall;

Could you please explain the different ways to tell if your lawn is ready for watering? I pretty much use the "walk on it and see if your footprints remain" method. The only problem I have with this is that sometimes I get no footprints, but when I mow, the lawnmower tracks are very evident for quite awhile. That leads me to believe I waited too long to water.

Thanks in advance for your reply.


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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2005 5:19 pm 
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Location: Garland, Texas
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
First of all your grass mix is immaterial. You were complaining about St Aug and I was giving suggestions for your specific complaint.

The grass mixture is only material, IF you wish for your reply to be relavent. Go a read my initial post again and then your response
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
...the only reason St Aug gets thin is from getting too dry.
Where did I say my St. Augustine was thinning?

Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
I don't care if you have a Ph.D in St Augustine turf drought evaluation.

I don't, and guess that you don't either. What I do have is practical experience (going on 3 decades worth) of successfully managing my landscape.

Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
I'm out of suggestions.
I've managed to get this far down the road without them, I'll take a leap and say I think I can manage a few more years. :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2005 6:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 6:00 pm
Posts: 47
Location: Hubbard,TX
Here are some observations I have made this year regarding St. Augustine. Our lawn too is overrun with weeds. A fews years back the St. Augustine at my church was looking the same way. Someone recommended humate. We put out humate and rock powders at the church. Well this year the St. Augustine at the church looks fabulous. Today I put humate on my lawn.

May not be a cure but the best thing about organics is it won't hurt anything.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2005 10:50 pm 
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Location: Garland, Texas
ckrumvieda wrote:
...Today I put humate on my lawn.

:lol: I hope you just wore your Tevas on your bare feet while applying. It sure makes it easier to wash that dust off.

ckrumvieda wrote:
...May not be a cure but the best thing about organics is it won't hurt anything.
I wouldn't want to breathe a bunch of the dust, but as far as being on my person, I trust there was no danger presented. :wink:

Maybe I'll thow down a bag and see what happens. I spent today hand weeding again and I don't know that I am making a whole lot of progress :evil:

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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2005 8:17 am 
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Mr Clean,

In your first message, the one I try to refer to when answering people's questions, you said,

My turf seems extremely thin. And, I have quite a number of areas of St. Augustine that does not appear to be coming back.

I think I would be considered normal for thinking your St Augustine was thin. You said nothing about having a multiculture turf.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2005 9:23 pm 
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Location: Garland, Texas
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
... You said nothing about having a multiculture turf.

Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
... First of all your grass mix is immaterial. .


:? It appears that it wouldn't have mattered if I had mentioned the fact. :?

So, if you don't have anything to offer, to my thread....but you haven't told me that I cut my St. Augustine too short or maybe goats...

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2005 12:38 pm 
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Location: Arlington
Mr. Clean;

You started this thread complaining about thinning turf and excess weeds. Dchall gave you some good avice on things to do to remady this problem, and you seem to have taken offence. Now you are attempting to offend. If you didn't want help with your weeds and thinning turf, why even post in the first place?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2005 7:03 pm 
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Location: Garland, Texas
jrosto wrote:
Dchall gave you some good avice on things to do to remady this problem, and you seem to have taken offence.

Well that makes two of you who agree on the value of the advice. I think that someone sitting in San Antonio is ill equipped to make a moisture (or lack thereof) assessment compared to someone who is on site. When his "prescription" was called into question (and why), he then questioned my ability to determine how much water was necessary for a landscape which I have nurtured for over a decade.
Dchall_San_Antonio wrote:
… I don't care if you have a Ph.D in St Augustine turf drought evaluation…
I could continue, but there is no point.

jrosto wrote:
If you didn't want help with your weeds and thinning turf, why even post in the first place?
The fact that others were seeing similar conditions was feedback which was helpful. As to the why, Scott-in-Texas’s response may be the closest to a “cause”, even though he is in the Ft. Worth area and I can’t compare our rainfall with his. And lastly, I wasn’t informed that my postings had to meet with your approval and that you could make the determination as to the pertinence of any response.

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PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 4:56 am 
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Location: Keller (North FW),Texas
Mr Clean,

Just curious, have you had a soil test done since you had issues with your landscape this year? It may shed some light.

RE: the rainfall, I bet it was pretty close to the same as here, we are only 30-40 miles apart by means of city to city. As I recall, it was the whole Metroplex area and beyond that received record rainfall last year. :mrgreen:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 11:56 am 
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Location: Garland, Texas
Scott-in-Texas, no I haven't spent the money or the time to have soil testing. There doesn't seem to be a pattern and the dead areas are physically separated from the thinning areas. The worst area of dead turf is up against the western side of the garage (situated at the rear of the lot). It measures @ 10' x 3' (at the widest point) and @ 1' (at the most narrow points). It is surrounded on the remaining three sides by healthy turf. I might also add that the surrounding St. Augustine is making in-roads back into the area, but it is still noticeably bare of living turf. The thinning turf areas are largely in the opposite side and at the front of the lot. The weeds are distributed throughout the lot. But the Fescue, which has proven to be much more moisture dependent is doing well and I have stands of it in the front and the back yards. :?

Scott-in-Texas wrote:
... As I recall, it was the whole Metroplex area and beyond that received record rainfall last year.
That is my recollection as well. :)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 18, 2005 12:39 pm 
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Location: Keller (North FW),Texas
Have you dug for grubs? Seems like that is possible. One on my friends parents house had a similar situation years ago. His father found after doing some digging that is was grubs that had done the damage. I noticed we had Junebugs in April this year, meaning the grub would have been active early. Maybe it has something to do with it? :mrgreen:

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