TAM, St Augustine does best in shade and requires more water than other turf types, like Bermuda. A well designed irrigation system is a far more efficient way to water, and the best time to water is earlier than most of us are awake, typically. I've designed a lot of irrigation systems in Texas from residential lawns to Golf Courses up to Air Force Bases.The Annoyed Man wrote: ↑Fri Jan 24, 2020 4:47 pmI confess that I am at a loss regarding lawn care issues ever since we moved back in 2017, and I could sure use some suggestions.
When we first moved to this house, our front lawn wasn’t perfect, but it was respectably good. Today, 2 years later, it is shot through with all manner of weeds; the St Augustine is faring poorly; and moles have turned it into a high risk place to walk. We have a what I would call a large front lawn, and I mean that nearly the whole thing has become treacherous footing. My wife is very unhappy with the way it looks (I confess more so than I am), and because she's not happy with it, I'm not happy.....if you know what I mean.
We water regularly as needed, and are careful not to over-water, so that’s not really an issue. I can no longer afford a gardener or lawn care service....not that the service I used to have (TruGreen) was worth a cup of warm spit....and so I’m curious to know what you do-it-yourselfers who take pride in your lawns do to keep it looking nice.
I'm willing to put in the sweat equity, but I don’t even know where to start...although it makes sense to me to start by killing off weeds and moles. What do you guys suggest?
Fertilizing definitely helps, but making sure that the fertilizer, around 10% nitrogen, gets saturated into the soil is your best insurance. Aerating in combination with good irrigation and occasional fertilizing will also help. As far as pesticides, get the best info you can from your local rep of the TX Dept of Ag. or a well trusted local Garden Center/Nursery. As with the case of Round-Up, you want to know what chemicals you come into contact with.
As far as selecting an irrigation contractor. Look for the guys whom will furnish you a printed plan before the trenching begins. If they've been schooled by TELSCO's College of Irrigation Knowledge, that's also a plus. TELSCO is the acronym for Texas Lawn Sprinkler Co., and the manufacturer of Weather-Matic irrigation equip.