Food and Grass?

Why Won’t My Grass Grow?

Many people living in the Tampa area may have parts of their lawn where the turfgrass won’t grow, no matter what they try. If you have those issues, here are a few things to check that may help you make your yard look better.


The bottom line is that all Florida turfs need some direct sunlight. Even “shade tolerant” types of St. Augustine need about five to six hours of sunlight a day.

Developers often just sod the whole yard without really thinking about whether the turf is appropriate everywhere. If you have an area that is shaded by large trees or buildings, consider a different type of groundcover that doesn’t need as much sunlight. For example, if you have an area shaded by a tree, a bed of mulch with some flowers may be ideal.

If you want to keep your turf and the area gets at least five hours of sun a day, try a more shade tolerant turf like St. Augustine cultivars Seville, Delmar and Captiva. Be careful not to mow the grass in these areas too short and make sure to treat it carefully.


It is important to have good soil for your grass to thrive. Checking the PH and assuring that things are balanced properly is a great start. We can help you with that.

Another common problem is that sometimes developers just lay sod right on top of compacted fill. This means that the dirt doesn’t have the nutrients your grass needs. Not only that, the fill is pressed down and is as hard as a rock. Trying to get sod to grow on top fill is similar to growing sod on your concrete driveway. It won’t work. You may need to take steps to put topsoil on top of the fill so your yard can thrive.


Most homeowners will check for broken sprinkler heads and pipes when trying to troubleshoot dead spots. However, sometimes the problem isn’t that something is broken. Sometimes, things aren’t designed well.

When new houses are built, sod is put on the yard and it usually looks great for a while. However, if some areas are not getting the right amount of water, those areas will eventually die out. If you have problem areas in your yard, compare the soil in those areas to the areas that are growing well. If they are dryer or wetter, and your sprinkler system is all in working order, it may be a design flaw.

Or, if your home is older, it could be that water flow patterns have changed over the years, and that your irrigation system needs to be updated. You may need to re-design your sprinkler system to assure that your turf is all getting the right amount of water.

Cheap Sod

Another possible issue can be cheap sod. If your sod didn’t last long despite good soil, plenty of sunlight and sufficient care, look for better quality sod. Don’t forget to protect your investment by having it sprayed with the appropriate fertilizers, fungicides and pest control products.

If you feel you need some professional help with your grass then contact us. Tampa Lawn Maintenance.

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