10+ Helpful Tips on How to Plant St Augustine Grass (Sod) 

 April 8, 2022

By  admin

St Augustine is a hardy, salt-tolerant ground cover that requires little care or attention. Once you plant your St Augustine grass seed in the proper location and give it time to grow it will provide an attractive backdrop for any yard in central Florida.

St Augustine grass plugs are used to plant sod in gardens and lawns. St Augustine grass is a type of warm-season, perennial grass that grows well in Florida.

There are affiliate links in this post. We may get a commission if you click and purchase, at no extra cost to you. For additional information, please visit our disclosure policy.

Are you thinking of putting a lovely thick, green blanket in your yard?

You’ve arrived to the correct location.

Take your time reading this article before diving in since it will save you money, time, and a lot of aggravation.

Also, you’ve come to the incorrect site if you’re wanting to grow grass from seed. This article is dedicated to the installation of sod grass.

How to Plant St Augustine Grass (Sod)


Here’s a Quick Rundown of This Article

  • Before you go, ask yourself these important (and fundamental) questions.
  • Planting St. Augustine Grass Sod: A Step-by-Step Guide
  • Money-Saving Tips to Help You Stick to Your Budget

In Texas, when is the best time to plant St. Augustine grass?

Just as Mother Nature’s little slice of skin, which you have been entrusted to care for, is likely to begin to cool…

Planting should begin at least 6 weeks before the first frost. This is for the root system, which requires plenty of time to mature.

Before you plant St. Augustine grass sod, ask yourself these questions.

Pause and ask yourself these questions before starting a project that might cost over $1,000 (even with self-installation).

Let’s start with the most expensive part of adding St. Augustine sod to your yard: determining the size of the area you wish to plant.

1. What is the approximate square footage of the area where I wish to lay sod?

This question will assist you in determining the quantity of the investment you’re making, as well as the time and money it will take to finish the project.

We simply intended to cover a piece of the backyard in our situation, so the total square footage amounted to about 450 SF (the space was 30′ X 15′).

How many sod pallets do I require?

In average, one pallet of St. Augustine Sod should cover around 450 square feet.

In our situation, a single pallet cost $140 to transport, whereas two pallets cost $80.

We were on the fence about planting a few more here and there, having additional pieces, etc., but the price incentive for delivery pushed us over the edge.

We decided to use two pallets.

2. When will the first frost (or scorching heat) occur?

Plant 6-8 weeks before the first winter freeze.

(Consider the average temperature in your region.)

Also, start working on your project while the temperature is below 90 degrees Fahrenheit. This will aid in water conservation (high-temperature heat will evaporate thinly watered grass quickly).

We selected late September to sow our grass in Austin, Texas.

However, late March or early April would have been ideal. We just wanted to take advantage of the colder autumn weather outdoors this season, so we embarked on a project that was different from the normal “Spring Planting.”

3. Am I financially prepared for the outlay?

If you’ve read this far, you’re undoubtedly aware of how much it costs to sod a yard, but just in case, I’ll go through the basics.

Details below, but the project was about $750, plus our time.


To figure out how much dirt you’ll need and how much it’ll cost, consider the following factors:

  • I’m going to put sod on how many square feet?
  • What is the current state of the soil?

A “yard” of topsoil is around 324 square feet distributed at a depth of 1 inch (inch), or slightly more than 100 square feet spread at a depth of 3 inches.

You won’t need more than 1 inch of dirt if you already have good soil in situ. However, if the soil is poor, putting up to 4 inches down can be a good idea.

As of this past weekend (2022), topsoil in Austin, Texas costs between $25 and $55 a yard. I went with Geogrowers’ Thunderdirt, which cost $53.50 a yard, and bought 3 yards of topsoil.

An extra $80 was charged for delivery.

After taxes, the total cost of 3 yards of dirt delivered was $250.

Native Grass Sod from St. Augustine

The cost of the sod itself varies, but I paid $389.70 to the Grass Outlet after delivery expenses and Texas sales tax.

Another way to look at it…

What is the price per square foot of St. Augustine sod? (cost)

My purchase totaled Including delivery, my order was $0.43 cents per SF..43 cents per SF, including shipping.

0.433 = ($389.70 / 900SF)

The following is the breakdown of the order:

  • Pallets of grass sod for $280 ($140 x 2)
  • Delivery is $80.
  • Taxes are $29.70

($100-200) Miscellaneous Tools and Equipment

“What equipment do I possess or have free access to?” is a follow-up inquiry.

Many of these odd instruments are likely already in your possession or within easy reach.

(Another fun idea is to use this as a reason to get to know your neighbors.)

If you get along, you may thank them by asking them to your backyard party or by encouraging them to play about in the grass with you…

4. Have I allotted sufficient time?

You must also consider the continuous care (+ related irrigation expenditure) in addition to the time it takes to lay 3-10 yards of dirt, rake, water the soil for compaction, lay the sod, align/straighten the edges (Tetris, anyone?) and excessively water it for the first time.

yard with dogs st. augustine grass sod

Here’s a preliminary estimate of the project’s first time commitment.

(Note: this job was completed by two healthy, young whippersnappers, which corresponds to around 25 horsepower… Just joking, but if you’re doing this yard work alone, double the timeframes listed here.)

  • Time to find the best prices: 1-2 hours
  • 30 minutes to order topsoil and sod
  • 3 hours of groundwork (topsoiling, raking, and watering)
  • 4 hours to lay sod
  • Watering Sod (for the first time): 1 hour

Total project time: 10 hours

For at least three weeks, you’ll need to water your lawn often. By 2 weeks, shallow roots have formed, but the root system will remain frail until week 6.

If you’re fortunate, you’ll receive some fresh rain just after planting (as we did… thanks karma).

The typical recommendation for “How Much Water Does My New Sod Need?” is to water the lawn every day for 21 days.

5. How Much Topsoil Will St. Augustine Grass Require?

The condition of the existing soil in your specified planting location will determine this.

You won’t need as much dirt if the soil drains well and is free of rocks, trash, and tree roots.

Because our yard was in such horrible state, we chose 3 yards of topsoil with a 3′′ depth.

Planting St. Augustine Sod: A Step-by-Step Guide

The first step is to do research.

Give yourself a pat on the shoulder for reading this far into the article– you’re doing exactly what we advise… research

Before you start, do some research about the topic.

Costs, labor, and time are all factors to consider, and if everything adds up for you, you’re ready to go on.

Step 2: Place Your Materials Order (and obtain necessary equipment)

Most grass sod will need to be purchased a few days ahead of time, particularly if you want to do this activity over the weekend.

Although some sod businesses deliver on weekends, many do not, and if you wait until the last minute, you may find up spending more.

The same may be said for topsoil firms. If you want to be safe, contact them and arrange your purchase at least 48 hours ahead of time.

Step 3: Prepare the Ground for Planting

You’ll need to conduct extra prep work here if there are too many rocks, roots, or stumps in the ground.

We found a wheelbarrow full of dead roots and a dozen 10-pound pebbles.

You don’t want to spend $500 on dirt and sod pallets only to wind up with dead areas in your yard because you were too lazy to spend 20-30 minutes cleaning rubbish from the soil.

Step 4: Laying the Foundation (lay topsoil, rake to an even spread)

Rakes for the Garden






True Temper 1881600...image

Buy Now



Emsco Group 9049...image

Buy Now



XINZOKYC Blue Hawk...image

Buy Now



Bully Tools 92309...image

Buy Now


Make that your grade is correct. Make sure the water drains correctly since you don’t want stagnant pools of water in your yard, particularly if you have pets.

Another reason to consider buying some additional dirt is to enhance any runoff slope you may need.

Step 5: Compact the topsoil by watering it.

A grass roller may be rented (or purchased), however wetting the soil is regarded adequate (and much less labor).

Make sure the soil is well saturated to remove any air bubbles or pockets.

As the roots expand outward, you want them to tuck themselves into the soil and avoid hitting pockets of air.

Stomp 6: Spread the Sod (and step on it!)

How to Lay Sod in St. Augustine (the simplest, most efficient way)

My particular approach…

  • Find the polygon’s longest edge and begin by making the first line of sod rectangles along that edge.
  • Carry 2-4 squares of sod at a time (depending on the distance between your pallet and the ground you’re planting).
  • Make sure the boundaries of each square of grass are lined up so that the roots can easily crawl around.

Because it creeps forth over the top surface level of the ground and shoots up, St. Augustine is known as “Crab Grass.”

The purpose is to eliminate the obstructions as quickly as possible.

A lawn roller is useful here, but if you have heavy boots, you may just walk about squishing the grass into the earth.

Step 7: Drink a lot of water!

We didn’t have a lot of worry since the grass sod we bought had been cut the day before, so we didn’t have to rush to get it down and watered (even though we did it within 8 hours of receiving it).

Many grass businesses, on the other hand, will not supply the day following harvest.

So, in the vast majority of situations, you’ll need to pull that sod down as soon as possible and flood the yard with water to bring the grass back to life.

Money Saving Ideas

At YardSurfer, we believe in doing things on a budget, so I’ll wrap off this piece with a few tips for saving money on your sod job.

1. Rent or borrow one-time-use equipment rather than purchasing it.

Wheelbarrows may be hired or borrowed from a nice neighbor at your local Home Depot.

Mine was leased for $12.99 at the time of writing.

There was also a $25 deposit required in the event that the equipment was destroyed, and the rental was just for four hours.

The 24-hour fee would have kicked in if I had gone more than 4 hours, pushing the total to $17.

2. Think about planting in the fall.

You’ll do alright here if you plant in the spring at the correct time (before it becomes too hot). However, since the temperature is colder in the autumn, the water may sink into your grass, soil, and root systems before evaporating.

3. Purchase just what you need

I’m pleased with our decision to buy two pallets of grass sod, even though we only required one since we had another location for “extra.”

But, if I had been really trying to be frugal, we could have gotten by with only one pallet and saved $140.

4. If you have the opportunity, consider sowing grass seed.

To wrap off this piece, I propose that all of you big spenders have a look at our essay on growing grass from seed.

Finally, it has the potential to save you a lot of money– but only under the proper circumstances.

Take a look at it here.

Please leave a remark if you have any other advice, ideas, or expertise.

St Augustine Grass is a type of turf grass that has been used for centuries. It is great for both homes and commercial properties. The best time to plant St Augustine Grass in Texas is during the spring or fall months. Reference: when to plant st augustine grass in texas.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you prepare ground for St Augustine sod?

A: To prepare ground for St Augustine sod, you should start by removing all vegetation and planting grass seed. You can then use a power tiller to break up the soil so that it is aerated before adding in St Augustine sod.

How can I make St Augustine grass spread faster?

A: You can plant your grass in a container that is filled with water before placing it outside. The wet soil will help the roots of your plants to spread more quickly and for them to grow faster as well, allowing you to have an easier time mowing down weeds and other pesky plants growing around your pool.

How long does it take for St Augustine sod to root?

A: It typically takes about one month for St Augustine sod to root.

Related Tags

  • how to get st augustine grass seed
  • st augustine grass sod near me
  • how to lay st augustine sod in florida
  • best time to plant st augustine grass in california
  • st augustine grass seed walmart

Emil Schoene

Born and raised in Austin, TX I come from a background of home renovation. By helping my family in my younger years with their construction business, I learned the ropes quickly and as I grew it became my passion that I still do today. Looking to share my knowledge with others. I invite you to leave comments on any post as I know you will have questions that you are not finding anywhere else.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}