Skip to Content

St Augustine Vs Centipede Grass: Key Differences (2023)

This site is supported by our readers. We may earn a commission, at no cost to you, if you purchase through links.

st augustine vs centipede grassEmbarking on the journey to cultivate a lush, vibrant lawn is akin to sowing the seeds of your personal Eden. As you stand at the crossroads of landscaping decisions, the choice between St. Augustine and Centipede grass emerges as a pivotal one.

In this verdant showdown, each contender brings its unique arsenal of attributes to the green arena. St. Augustine, with its broad, emerald blades, wields the power to transform shaded patches into inviting havens.

Meanwhile, Centipede grass, with its low-growing elegance, offers a resilient carpet of verdure that beckons with minimal maintenance demands.

Unearth the hidden dynamics, grasp the reins of understanding, and empower your lawn with the wisdom to thrive under the sun’s benevolent gaze.

Key Takeaways

  • St. Augustine has a broad, lush appearance, while Centipede has a fine, wispier look.
  • St. Augustine is more durable and resilient to heat, drought, and traffic compared to Centipede.
  • St. Augustine requires more maintenance, including frequent mowing and fertilization, while Centipede has low maintenance needs.
  • St. Augustine thrives in shade and is ideal for shaded areas, while Centipede prefers sunny conditions and is well-suited for sunny locations.

Key Differences Between St. Augustine Grass and Centipede Grass

Key Differences Between St. Augustine Grass and Centipede Grass
When deciding between St. Augustine grass and Centipede grass for your lawn, you’ll want to consider differences in appearance, durability, maintenance needs, price, and sun tolerance. St. Augustine grass has a lush, broad-bladed appearance but requires more care and costs more than the fine-bladed, lower maintenance Centipede grass, which handles full sun exposure better.


You’ll notice St. Augustine has those broad blades that form a lush, green carpet, while Centipede’s fine leaves give it a lighter, wispier look. The dark green hue of St. Augustine contrasts with the yellow-green color of Centipede.

When it comes to texture, St. Augustine has a dense, spongy feel compared to Centipede’s coarse, stiff blades. Visually, St. Augustine offers a fuller, thicker lawn, while Centipede has an airier, delicate appearance.

Both adapt well to shade, but St. Augustine’s broader leaves help it thrive better in partial sun.


Bet your bottom dollar St. Augustine grass stands up to wear and tear way better than wimpy centipede grass ever could. St. Augustine grass blades are broad, robust, and hardy, while centipede grass blades are thin and delicate.

With deep roots and native origins in hot, humid climates, St. Augustine grass has higher heat and drought resistance than centipede grass.

St. Augustine grass holds up to foot traffic, activity, and high maintenance yard work much better than centipede grass. Overall, St. Augustine grass has greater durability and resilience to withstand wear, weathering, and activity compared to centipede grass.


Maintaining it won’t be a hassle, especially with the low-maintenance nature of one option and the higher care needs of the other. Centipede grass requires very little maintenance while St. Augustine needs more attentive care.

Centipede Grass St. Augustine Grass
Watering Infrequent Frequent
Mowing 1-2 times per month 1-2 times per week
Fertilization 1-2 times per year 3-4 times per year
Pest Control Rarely needed Often required

Shade tolerance and pest resistance reduce maintenance for centipede grass. St. Augustine’s thirst and susceptibility to problems necessitate diligent lawn care. Proper watering techniques, fertilization scheduling, and pest control keep St. Augustine healthy.


When it comes to cost considerations, one might find that the initial investment differs, potentially leading to a varied financial journey down the lawn care path. While St. Augustine grass has a lower upfront cost for sodding, its long-term maintenance expenses are higher compared to Centipede grass.

The latter’s lower fertilizer, water, and pesticide needs make it more budget-friendly over time. Evaluating comparative costs and projected maintenance budgets helps determine the more financially feasible grass type for one’s unique situation.

Sun Tolerance

Under the scorching sun, picture a lush lawn unfolding – one variety showcasing remarkable resilience, while the other revels in the sunlight, displaying its robustness. St. Augustine grass boasts shade adaptability and thrives under the sun’s warmth, showcasing its broad blades.

On the flip side, centipede grass, with its bright green hue, handles sunlight with ease, and its low-maintenance demeanor shines. This sunlight endurance highlights the intriguing photosynthesis variations and stress responses these two grasses exhibit, solidifying their distinct sun tolerance and grass durability.

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Classification

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Classification
You have St. Augustine classified as a warm-season grass, while Centipede’s a cool-season one, so you gotta factor climate differences when choosing between them.

Here are some key factors to consider in the classification of these grasses:

  • Grass selection factors: Look at the specific needs and preferences for your lawn, such as appearance, durability, and maintenance level.
  • Environmental adaptability: Both types thrive in hot climates but differ in their tolerance to shade and soil conditions.
  • Maintenance comparison: Centipede requires less care and is often referred to as the lazy man’s grass, while St.

When it comes down to it, each type has its strengths and weaknesses. For example:

  • Shade tolerance: St. Augustine performs better in shady areas than centipede grass.
  • Growth characteristics: Turf takeover between these two can be an issue if not properly maintained.

Remember that ultimately your decision should be based on personal preference coupled with the unique requirements of your lawn environment.

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Description

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Description
Look closely and you’ll notice St. Augustine’s broad, flat blades that form a lush, emerald carpet compared to Centipede’s narrow, folded, coarse yellow-green strands. The grass coloration itself tells a tale of contrasting aesthetics. St. Augustine’s deep green hue exudes opulence and grandeur, while Centipede’s sunnier, yellower shade evokes a more carefree charm.

These grasses have mastered the art of environmental adaptations. St. Augustine flaunts its versatility, gracefully tolerating both sun and shade, thriving in various soil types, and demonstrating exceptional heat resistance.

On the other hand, Centipede boasts a tougher resilience, embracing the sun, heat, and even drought while maintaining its vibrant color.

Maintenance-wise, Centipede proves to be the lazier companion, requiring less upkeep than its St. Augustine counterpart. When it comes to shade tolerance, St. Augustine holds its ground as the shade-loving champion, making it ideal for those shadier patches in your lawn.

Consider your soil preferences, shade conditions, and willingness for maintenance when deciding between these two distinctive grasses.

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Uses

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Uses
Leave Dad wanting a lustrous lawn length with lavish homegrown St. Augustine’s soft surfeit. When considering the uses of centipede versus St. Augustine grasses for southern lawns, the latter’s broad shade tolerance gives it an edge.

St. Augustine thrives in sandy soils and humid coastal regions of southeastern U.S. Its dense sod holds up under foot traffic. Though it requires more care, this warm season grass fills in bare spots and controls weeds.

Centipede’s fine texture and apple green color make for gorgeous turf, yet it demands full sun.

For a lush green carpet under trees, go with low-mow St. Augustine. But for low-hassle lawn loving the southern sun, choose easy centipede.

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Origins and Growing Preferences

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Origins and Growing Preferences
After considering their preferences in care and maintenance, habitats, and weather conditions, settling on the right grass ultimately depends on location. St. Augustine grass thrives in warm, humid coastal regions like Florida and the Gulf Coast.

Meanwhile, centipede grass originated in China and Southeast Asia, so it is well-adapted to hot, humid climates. Centipede grass tolerates acidic, infertile soils and needs less water than St. Augustine.

Both grasses grow best in full sun, but St. Augustine handles partial shade better.

Knowing the origin climate helps determine if the grass will adapt to your local growing conditions. Selecting a type suited to your region’s soil, sun exposure, and rainfall will ensure success.

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Special Features and Fun Facts

St. Augustine Grass Vs. Centipede Grass: Special Features and Fun Facts
You’ll be surprised by the special features and fun facts of St. Augustine and centipede grasses.

For instance, St. Augustine grass produces underground stems called stolons that can creep horizontally and form thick mats, while centipede grass has a unique lime green color in the summer.

When comparing lawn grasses, it’s fascinating to see their climate adaptations and growth habits. St. Augustine’s broad blades and shade tolerance make it ideal for hot, humid climates.

Understanding these special traits can help guide proper lawn maintenance and meet expectations for lush, green turfgrass. Whether you prefer the dense coverage of St. Augustine or the low-maintenance perks of centipede, both grasses offer unique benefits for homeowners in suitable regions.

Centipede Vs. St. Augustine Grass

Centipede Vs. St. Augustine Grass
You’ve got two great warm weather grass choices to mull over. Centipede grass thrives in hot, sunny environments like Florida and the Gulf Coast. Its fine texture and yellow-green hue make for an attractive lawn. Low maintenance and fewer inputs like fertilizer and water keep it eco-friendly.

St. Augustine grass prevails across the Southeast up to Texas. Its tolerance of salt, shade, and poor soil makes it widely adaptable. Familiarize yourself with both grasses’ ideal climate range, maintenance needs, and appearance before deciding.

Weigh your lawn goals – lush and verdant or easy and natural? Consider alternatives like zoysia or bermuda too.

The right grass for you depends on climate, maintenance expectations, and visual preference for your landscape. Both centipede and St. Augustine can create inviting lawns but have distinct care needs and aesthetic qualities.

What Other Grass Species Should You Consider?

What Other Grass Species Should You Consider
You should also look at options like Bermuda, Bluegrass, Buffalo, Tall Fescue, Zebra, and Zoysia grass.

Bermuda grass thrives in hot climates and withstands heavy foot traffic.

Buffalo grass only grows 3-7 inches high, making it a low maintenance turf.

Tall fescue is shade tolerant and does well in coastal climates.

When comparing grass species, consider factors like climate tolerance, durability, and required upkeep. Drought-resistant alternatives like Bermuda may fare better in dry areas. Buffalo and Zoysia need less mowing and care.

Shade-tolerant choices like Tall Fescue can work where St. Augustine struggles. Evaluate soil, sunlight, and usage to pick the best low maintenance grass for your lawn.

With smart planning, you can achieve an attractive yard with minimal hassle.


Having considered the key differences between St. Augustine and centipede grass, the wise homeowner takes into account the lay of their land before making a decision. Both grasses have their merits, but making poor choices could result in excessive mowing.

It is important to carefully match the grass type to the climate, sun exposure, foot traffic, and required upkeep time. While centipede grass thrives on neglect, St. Augustine’s broad blades are able to withstand the activities of kids and pets.

Before seeding, it is essential to assess your tolerance for caretaking. Regardless of the grass type chosen, diligent mowing and watering are necessary to maintain a lively and green lawn.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.