Centipedegrass is a slow-growing, coarse-textured, warm-season turf that is adapted for use in low maintenance situations. It is often referred to as "lazy man's grass" due to its infrequent mowing and fertilization requirements. It also has a light-green color and spreads by stolons. It does not tolerate traffic, compaction, high pH, excessive thatch, drought, or heavy shade. Centipedegrass can often be confused with St. Augustinegrass. However, centipedegrass has alternating leaves at the nodes whereas St. Augustinegrass has opposite leaves at the nodes. Centipedegrass also has a more pointed, slenderer leaf blade than St. Augustinegrass. Both leaf blades are V-shaped in cross section, but that of St. Augustinegrass has a more obviously boat-shaped tip.
lawn Maintenance for December - February
DO NOT fertilize centipedegrass at this time. Submit soil samples for analysis every 3 years to determine nutrient requirements. Be sure to specify centipedegrass. (Contact your county Extension Center for details.) Apply lime or sulfur if suggested (based on soil test) to raise or reduce soil pH respectively. DO NOT lime centipedegrass unless recommended by soil test.
Water to prevent excessive dehydration.
Remove lawn debris (rocks, sticks, and leaves). Do not burn off centipedegrass to remove excessive debris because of possible injury to the grass and potential fire hazard.
Apply broadleaf herbicides as necessary for control of chickweed, henbit, etc. Centipedegrass is sensitive to certain herbicides (e.g., 2,4-D), so follow label directions for reducing rates, and use with caution. Selected herbicides (e.g., atrazine or simazine) can be applied in November or December for control of annual bluegrass (Poa annua) and several winter annual broadleaf weeds.
seedhead a slender spike
leaves folded in the bud
short, membranous with fine hairs, hairs longer than purplish membrane, 0.02 inches (0.5 mm) long
Growth Season/Life Cycle
warm season turf
Leaf blade tip shape
boat shaped or sharp-pointed; flattened, short, sharply creased, hairs along edge at base
Leaf blade width
medium, 0.1 - 0.2 in
continuous; constricted by fused crease, hairs tufted at lower edge
split with overlapping margins; sheath has grayish tufts of hairs at throat