Another of the more common lawn diseases to affect St Augustine grass is Powdery Mildew. Powdery Mildew not only affects lawns and grasses of all types, but also affects all plant types too. So in the case of a garden which is showing signs of infestations of Powdery Mildew disease, it would be highly recommended to treat this disease in the gardens as quickly as possible before it spreads onto the lawn as the best means to prevent this lawn disease from spreading too quickly and too far.
Powdery Mildew is most easily spread from plants and other lawns underneath shoes, with lawn mowers, bicycle tires, on the feet and fur of pets and literally anything imaginable of crossing one lawn and then another. Powdery Mildew is a highly contagious lawn and plant disease.
The initial signs of Powdery Mildew on St Augustine grass lawns is when it first appears as small spots which will look like white dust across different parts of the lawn surface. Eventually these dusty spots on the grass will continue to spread at a rapid rate until the entire lawn is affected, creating an unsightly mess of yellowing lawn with rotting leaves, and a white dusty appearance across the lawn surface.
Treating Powdery Mildew On St Augustine Grass
The good news is that powdery mildew really is very easy to treat on our lawns, but like all lawn diseases, it must be a two pronged attack of prevention and treatment at the same time.
Prevention involves all the good lawn care practices which are outlined in many lawns disease articles on this site, and include things such as controling lawn thatch, removing thatch, a year round fertilization program, lawn watering in the mornings, lawn aeration when and if necessary, ensuring adequate sunlight to the lawn etc. These things will create a Saint Augustine lawn in the very best health possible, and one which is able to fight all forms of lawns disease, including Powdery Mildew with the greatest of ease. Next comes the really easy treatment to control Powdery Mildew.
Baking Soda Controls Powdery Mildew
Simple baking soda mixed up in a watering can and applied liberally to the lawn will adjust the pH levels of the turf very quickly, and which in turn will control the Powdery Mildew in your Saint Augustine lawn.
Be sure to apply this simple mixture to the entire surface of the lawn at the same time, and not just to the patches of affected turf that we can most easily see. Check surrounding plants, bushes and garden beds for further signs of this disease in nearby areas, and treat these areas in the same way and at the same time.
Regular Outbreaks Of Powdery Mildew
If a Saint Augustine lawn is experiencing regular outbreaks of powdery mildew, then there is at least one or more underlying problems which should be looked into and addressed. As such matters will not only be encouraging the ongoing outbreak of Powdery Mildew, but would also be encouraging other lawn diseases, as well as leaving the entire lawn in poorer lawn health than what is necessary.
Check fertilization schedules and be sure that the lawn is only being fertilized within or less than manufacturers guidelines and no more. Excess nitrogen from fertilizer is a big encouragement for the growth of powdery mildew. Another option to reduce the occurrences of outbreaks of powdery mildew would be to begin using slow release lawn fertilizers.
Lastly, be sure to follow good lawn care practices as we have already discussed earlier in this article, and in doing so the possibility of any further outbreaks of powdery mildew in Saint Augustine grass, and all other lawn types should be greatly reduced if not eliminated for good.