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Centipede Lawn Care

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I love your website and practical advice for the everyday person juggling 10 different things that all seem to scream for priority.

We live in the southeast specivically zone 8A in Beaufort, NC and have a centipede lawn. in your article you state [i[font=Verdana]]"Grass is a nitrogen pig. Legumes (such as clover and black medic) can get their nitrogen from the air (remember that the air we breathe is 80% nitrogen!). So, when you see legumes taking over your lawn (clover, medic, etc.), you know that your soil is nitrogen poor."[/font][/i]

Centipede grass can be damaged by too much nitrogen. I REALLY want to use only organic matter for our lawn. What do you suggest specifically for centipede lawns.

Thank you in advance for your answer. I've been on the web for hours looking for someone that is down to "earth" !
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Location: Bellevue, WA
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Excellent choice in your centipede lawn. I think you'll be really happy with that as a low-maintenance lawn solution.

What I understand about centipede lawns (note, I've never had one):

  • [li]You should only need one application of organic fertilizer a year to keep it up.[/li]
    [li]Centipede lawns can be mowed low, and only needs to be mowed 1-2x/month. Because it's so thick, it will choke out most of your weeds naturally.[/li]
    [li]It does best in an acidic soil - somewhere around PH 5-6.5. So the acidity of your soil might be something to keep an eye on.[/li]
    [li]Centipede can go quite a while between waterings. 14-21 days. This will help the roots grow deeper too.[/li]

  • As far as fertilizer, you should easily be able to use an organic variety such as alfalfa pellets or appropriately aged manure. Just watch out for the nitrogen content (but you know that already!). Fertilize in late summer/early fall.

    If you're getting fertilizer at the store, you can tell how much nitrogen is in it on the bag. The first number is the % of nitrogen in the bag. So a 100 pound bag with a 10/20/30 label would have 10 pounds of nitrogen. You want to shoot for 1 pound per 1000 pounds fertilizer if you can find something like that.

    Good luck!
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