St. Augustine Sod – How do Sod Farms Work?

IHow do Sod Farms Workf you have ever seen sod, you may have wondered where it came from or how it was grown. Those pieces of sod come with grass and soil that is conducive to growing such grass. St. Augustine grass grows and thrives best when it’s planted, or placed, using sod that is grown at a special sod farm.

What is a “SOD” farm?

Just like the name suggests, a sod farm is acreage of land that is agriculturally sound and suited for growing grass seeds and allowing it to propagate before it’s carefully removed, sold, and placed at its new home.

Sod by any other name

Sod is also referred to as turf. It’s merely grass with soil beneath it that is held together by the roots of the grass. In the case of growing St. Augustine grass, it would be held together by the roots of that type of grass.

The process of growing St. Augustine grass

  • Flat land – The land needs to be as flat as possible and be as close to a good water supply as possible. Because St. Augustine requires a lot of water to grow and thrive, there are not many sod farms that grow this kind of grass in water-restricted areas. Drainage also has to be good so the grass doesn’t become diseased and rotten.
  • Land prep – The sod farm workers clear the land from rocks and other hard substances that would impede grass growth. The soil is then prepared with fertilizer, herbicides, insecticides, and whatever it takes to make the pH balance correct for a given type of grass.
  • Sowing the seeds – After the land is ready, the workers get busy planting the St. Augustine seeds. They often use special spreading equipment that makes the job go faster.
  • Water – Once the seeds are sown, they are watered using a special irrigation system that is used to maintain ample water for the grass.

After this process, the grass grows and the workers on the sod farm keep it maintained until it’s ready to “harvest” for people who want sod for their properties.

This information simplifies the process of growing St. Augustine grass. You now know where it comes from and how it’s grown on Sod farms.

If you need St. Augustine turf for your commercial, industrial, or residential properties, talk to the sod professionals at Quality Turf. If St. Augustine sod will meet your needs, these experts will know it. If not, they have other types of sod available to suit your needs.

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Oh the Places You Will Grow St. Augustine SOD

Places You Will Grow St. Augustine SODOne of the elements of having a beautiful lawn is that you start with the right grass or sod for your climate and region. For instance, St. Augustine grass is ideally suited for moderate to mild climates like you have in San Jacinto, California. The same could be said about areas of Florida and other sub-tropical and tropical places.

Attributes of St. Augustine Grass

  • No weeds – If your lawn is susceptible to weeds, St. Augustine sod is good at crowding out most kinds of weeds and other types of grasses as well. Therefore, you aren’t likely to find other types of grass or weeds on your lawn. It virtually eliminates the need to pull weeds.
  • Salt tolerant – Because St. Augustine turf has a good level of salt tolerance, it can grow well where salt water is prevalent.
  • Fast growth – This kind of grass is known to grow very fast, and works best when it’s placed as sod instead of seeds. It takes time for the seeds to grow, but when you have professionals SOD your yard with St. Augustine grass, you get an instant lawn.
  • Dense cover – St. Augustine turf grass is a dense type of grass, which means it creates a carpet-like cover all over your property and spreads quickly.

Even with all these benefits of St. Augustine grass, it also has it downside.

The Difficulties of St. Augustine Grass

  • High maintenance – Depending on the species of St. Augustine turf you use, it ranges from moderate to high maintenance. That means it requires a lot of care. If you don’t have time for proper maintenance, this is not a good sod option unless you hire professionals to care for your lawn.
  • Dormant color change – During its dormant times, St. Augustine grass turns tan or brown until the weather is suitable for its green, lush color in the spring.
  • Pest susceptible – Pests love this dense, fast-growing turf. The southern cinch bug is one its biggest nemeses.
  • Disease prone – While St. Augustine is relatively hardy, it also tends to attract certain types of diseases like gray leaf spot and other types of grass diseases.

No matter what the benefits and downsides of St. Augustine grass are, it’s still an excellent choice for the San Jacinto area.

Before you decide on the kind of grass you want for your lawn, consult with the SOD experts at Quality Turf first. Their 30 plus years of experience will come in handy for helping you make the best choice in sod.

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Five Ideas for Landscaping with Quality Sod

landscaping-ideasSod is the best way to get an instant, or virtually instant lawn. There is no waiting for grass seeds to sprout and grow over weeks or months before you have a beautiful lawn to enjoy. Sod is also perfect for creating your landscape around since it creates an instant lawn. The following will discuss five landscaping turf ideas you can use to go with your sod.

  1. Garden Sitting Area – You can create a garden sitting area with sod. Choose a shape and size for your sitting area and have the grass sod installed for a ready-made sitting area complete with bench, chairs and a table, and a flower or vegetable garden surrounding the perimeter. This is also a great idea for around a vertical garden wall.
  2. Front Yard Scheme – Your front yard is the first impression people get when they see your property. It’s the canvas that sets the scheme for your house. As a front yard scheme setting, you can use quality sod in conjunction with concrete driveways or walkways, brick walkways, stone or rock walkways, around trees and/or flowers, and with any kind of feature with which you choose to decorate your front yard.
  3. Sectioned Yard – You can create sections in your yard, preferably the backyard that set off various features on your property. For instance, you can use bricks, stones, or concrete squares to separate a section from the rest of the yard and use sod in between each section. It can be any size and provide an elegant look to your lawn. This contemporary style can encompass sidewalks, driveways, and other features you use to section off your yard.
  4. Patio Decorative Patterns – Sod can be used to create decorative patterns around your patio or even under a deck. Using pavers or stones sets off the backyard and provides you with an aesthetic view of your lawn.
  5. A Gateway – You can also use sod to create a gateway between areas of your yard, if you have a large piece of property. You can use archways, trellises, pergolas, and other features as decorative elements to set off your green, green grass lawn. You might even call it your gateway to a secret garden if you so choose.

These are all viable options for using sod along with other features and elements of landscaping. SOD grass goes so well with these elements when you are trying to create an instant lawn you can enjoy almost right away.

Discuss your thoughts and ideas with the SOD experts at Quality Turf before you select your sod. They can tell you what sod is best suited to your region and help you make an informed choice with their 30 plus years of experience.

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Varieties of St. Augustine Grass | Uses & Benefits

About St. Augustine Grass

St. Augustine GrassSt. Augustine sod grass is courser than most fine textured Bermuda grasses. It provides a denser ground cover and is an aggressive growing grass that is also easily controlled around it borders.

Because St. Augustine seldom produces viable seeds, it is most often planted via plugs, sprigs, or sod; sod being the most desirable.

It requires lots of moisture, is best suited for humid areas like Florida, Texas, and other southern states with sub-tropical to tropical weather, and is known to be relatively shade tolerant in most varieties.

Varieties of St. Augustine Grass

Floratam – This variety of St. Augustine grass is the only one that isn’t shade tolerant. It is most popular in Florida among homeowners since it thrives best in the direct sunlight many Florida neighborhoods provide.

Bitter-Blue – This grass is very good for shady properties. It is one of the more cold-tolerant varieties of this species of grass and it grows more slowly, which means you don’t have to mow as often.

Seville – Homeowners like the uniqueness of the blue-green hues and long leaf blades of the Seville variety of St. Augustine SOD. It retains its color quite well and has good tolerance levels for shade, salt, and is one of the species that tolerates drought conditions well.

Floralawn – Floralawn is suited to mild environments where it can thrive. It has a low tolerance to cold and shade.

Delmar – Delmar lawns are known for producing heavy thatch. It features good shade tolerance, but it also thrives well in direct sun. Delmar sod is considered a dwarf St. Augustine grass variety.

Sapphire – Sapphire is the only St. Augustine variety that offer high performance in a finer blade. It has a unique deep, blue-green color and a soft texture. It’s suitable for warmer climates, tolerates shade, drought, salt, and is ideal for coastal regions.

Delta Shade – Delta shade offers good shade tolerance, but is still not as good as St. Augustine’s dwarf varieties.

Raleigh – Unlike most of the varieties of grass, Raleigh tends to be less happy in the summer heat. It is relatively cold hardy and grows well in clay type soil.

Palmetto – Island and coastal homeowners like Palmetto turfgrass. It has become a standard in such areas since it can tolerate the cold better than other varieties and does well in either partial shade or full sun. Another benefit of Palmetto is that it resists those pesky cinch bugs.

Now you know the basics of St. Augustine SOD varieties. You can take this information and use it when you consult with the Sod Experts at Quality Turf for the best solution depending on the climate and weather.  If you live in Southern California and want St. Augustine Sod we recommend you consider our Quality St. Augustine

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What makes SOD so good for the environment?

SOD good for the environmentWith more people getting on board with saving the planet, sod is highly desirable and widely used to propagate lawns.

Besides creating a beautiful, instant yard, sod is also good for the environment. Here are five ways sod helps the environment.

  1. It reduces your carbon footprint. According to an independent study conducted by university instructor and energy expert, Dr. Ranaji Sahu, well-maintained lawns capture four times the carbon from the air that what your lawnmower produces. Managing your lawn requires that you first choose a quality grass species for the sod. It’s also vital that you avoid cutting your lawn too short to help it develop strong, deep roots. Other factors that are important to lawn maintenance include leaving your clippings on your lawn, watering responsibly, and keeping your lawnmower in good condition.
  2. Sod enhances oxygen production. Photosynthesis is the process plants use to clean the air. Grass, like all green plants take carbon dioxide and water to produce pure oxygen using the sun’s energy. The plant, grass in this case, lives off the carbohydrates produced in the photosynthesis process while providing humans and mammals their oxygen supply. The average lawn creates enough oxygen to meet the daily needs of 16 people.
  3. It acts as nature’s air conditioner. Natural sodded lawns are 30 degrees cooler than asphalt, 14 degrees cooler than soil, and 40 degrees cooler than artificial turf. This cooling effect reduces how much electricity is burned by running an electric air conditioning unit.
  4. Sod is a natural water filter. You may not know that one of the issues with water quality comes from runoff of contaminants from roads, parking lots, and hard surfaces. Natural grass lawns reduce the effects of runoff, purifying the ground water. This is one reason reclaimed water is often used on golf courses.
  5. Sodded lawns control soil erosion. Every year about 6 billion tons of soil is washed or blown away. Soil erosion is one of the biggest issues facing the environment today. Natural grass is a cost-effective solution to the problem. It provides a solution for wind and water erosion. A dense, well-maintained lawn can reduce runoff to nearly zero.

Homeowners should desire to have a nice, thick and well-maintained lawn for all five of these reasons that go beyond mere aesthetics. Quality Turf brings 30 years of experience to the table and can help you create a beautiful lawn with natural sod.

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David at qturf really stepped it up for us. He was so patient and helpful with all of our needs. My only regret is not redoing or yard sooner!  The prices are competitive and the sod is absolutely gorgeous. Our gardener was so impressed with the quality. Here we are, one year later, and we are STILL the envy of our neighbors!

Liat S. – Upland, CA
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