St. Augustine Grass plugs

Q: I am tired of fighting hot, dry summers to get my fescue to survive. Next summer I plan to mix St. Augustinegrass plugs into my fescue in hopes that as the fescue deteriorates in summer, the St Augustine will spread and take over. Any recommendations on the best way to make this happen?

A: I had the same situation and reaction five years ago. I harvested lots of St. Augustinegrass runners from a friend’s twenty-year old lawn in Candler Park. I cut them into four-inch long pieces, then buried two inches of each piece in the ground. I kept the soil moist for two weeks. Most rooted and started spreading. The Candler Park house was eventually sold to a stranger and I needed more sprigs so I bought a piece of ‘Raleigh’ St. Augustinegrass sod at a nursery. I washed it in a big tub of water to make the individual plants easy to separate, then used a bulb planter to dig a hole for each sprig, twelve inches apart. Now, three years later, my lawn is lush and green for most of the year. It turns light green/gray in winter but greens up again in May.

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