Captiva St. Augustine Maintenance

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Captiva St. Augustine LogoCaptiva St. Augustine was developed by Dr. Russell Nagata of the University of Florida. Captiva is resistant to a number of insects, including all chinch bugs found in the state of Florida and the Tropical Sod Webworm. Captiva St. Augustine thrives under a wide range of climatic and soil conditions in USDA Zones 8b to 11, which stretches from Florida northward to the Coastal Carolinas and westward along the Gulf Coast Region into Central Texas and continues into southwestern Arizona and coastal and central California. Captiva is an ideal choice for residential and commercial use. It has an outstanding dark green color. Captiva also has a slow leaf growth habit which dramatically cuts down the need for mowing. It requires 3-4 hours of direct sunlight per day. It holds fall and winter color longer than Bermuda, Centipede, or other St. Augustine cultivars. It will remain evergreen in some areas of the deep South. Captiva St. Augustine also has a massive root system, making it drought tolerant once established. Captiva St. Augustine recovers quickly from damage by wear or minor scalping as it sends out runners to repair open areas.

Installation and Establishment

Installation and the care taken during the initial days that follow are the most critical factors in determining the long-term quality and performance of any turfgrass, including Captiva St. Augustine. Harvesting and transplantation are extremely stressful to turfgrass and precautionary measures should be taken to help reduce further cultural and environmental stresses. Captiva is a tough, hardy turfgrass that, once established, produces a beautiful lifetime lawn and landscape. Proper care, including pre-installation soil preparation and limiting time on the pallet to less than 24 hours, yields positive results (see Installation). Improper care, especially during the initial 24-hour period after harvest, can cause death of the turfgrass or damage that results in lengthy recovery and additional expense. This potential damage is magnified during hot, humid months. An installation procedure that is acceptable during cool weather may cause extensive damage during hot weather for any St. Augustinegrass.

Newly Installed Captiva

Watering: Proper watering upon installation is essential to successful esablishment

Mowing: New installations are often uneven, and care should be taken not to scalp high areas. A common mistake is not to mow a newly installed lawn, which slows establishment and encourages the turf to become “leggy.”

Insecticides: Newly installed turfgrass can be susceptible to insect damage, especially armyworms and webworms. New grass is more vulnerable than established turf due to the temporary loss of a deep root structure. Armyworms and webworms prefer new grass compared to established turf due to the “tenderness” of new growth.

Fungicides: During stressful times of the year, i.e. extremely wet and/or hot periods, a preventative fungicide should be applied at the time of installation.

Fertility: Use a transplant-friendly regimen that will help reduce shock and minimize disease

Post Establishment Maintenance

Mowing: Mowing is a critical and often underappreciated cultural practice:

Insecticides: Avoid stress from insects by performing insecticidal applications as needed:

Herbicides: Proper mowing, irrigation and fertilization of Captiva will reduce weed problems. If a weed problem persists:

Fungicides: Although Captiva exhibits good disease resistance, fungal problems can occur during prolonged periods of adverse environmental conditions.

Irrigation: Once established, Captiva requires water on an as-needed basis. Overwatering encourages excessive growth, disease, root rot, and poor aeration of soils. Most lawns are overwatered, not underwatered, which wastes resources, creates a shallow rooted “water dependent lawn,” and potentially damages the turf.

Fertility: Proper fertility practices will encourage healthy, disease and insect free Captiva:

Captiva BMP PDF Download

Read detailed description of BMPs

To ensure optimum quality and performance of Captiva, users must implement proper care and maintenance. This care and maintenance has been formalized above in the Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Captiva St. Augustine. These BMPs are written as a guide and should be modified as local climate, soil and environmental conditions dictate. It is important to note that no “magic fertilizer” or “super chemical” will solve all problems or make any turfgrass perfect.