St Augustine grass problem

I got a load of compost from my dad's horse ranch, made from Arabian horse dung and hay and clippings and the like. He warned me that it was very "rich", but I got it and put it all over my lawn anyway. Well, now it is all brown, and the areas I put more compost on are the brownest. I guess I "burned" it. I've been watering profusely (every other day, as we've had over 23 days of over 90 degrees temp w/o rain) in hopes of bringing it back. It is St. Augustine, and I live in North Austin Texas. The soil is very clay-ish, and I can see roots of the grass in runners that evidently have to place to go. Is there anything I can do to salvage this grass? I cannot afford to replant or re-sod right now. This is my first lawn (obviously!) and I need help.
Thanks
Daremo
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Another place to ask is rec.gardens
Sue(tm) Lead me not into temptation... I can find it myself!
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I'm no expert but I live in South Florida where the only grass that really thrives is St. Augustine. The grass has gone through droughts, continuous rain and every other thing that Mother Nature could throw at it and it always survives. Water it normally and give it a chance. By the way, where you have clay, we have sand and crushed coral.
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Daremo wrote:

How large an area is burned? Solid brown where burned, or are there signs of green growth? Rich fertilizer burns because it dehydrates the plant, just like when people eat too much salt. Hot summer is poor time to fertilize with anything when plants are under stress. You can keep watering 3x week for a while; you will see in about a week whether the brown patches are greening up. It's a lousy time of year to plug or sod the lawn, too, but plugs aren't that difficult, spread pretty quickly, and don't cost. You will need to treat for weeds if weeds take hold in the damaged areas, but that can be done later. St. Aug. is hard to kill.
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Norminn wrote:

planting, till in spring.
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Thanks, guys.
There is still sign of life in the brown areas, so I'll keep watering and hope for the best! It isn't solid brown, there are brown patches. From your responses, I think St. Aug is the grass for me..."Hard to Kill" just like Steven Seagal!
Thanks again
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grow sideways. Three years ago we had a severe drought down here and were unable to water at all for over a month with 90-95 degree daily temps. Soon as we started watering, it took about a month and the lawn looked great.
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Daremo writes:

The richest compost is still weaker than synthetic fertilizer. It was probably loaded with something else, like an extreme pH leachant. Take off what you can, and hose down the rest to dilute whatever is in there, see if the grass comes back.
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Richard J Kinch wrote:

That is a generalization which, in general, isn't <necessarily> true... :)
Manure, particularly horse, is potentially very strong in immediately releasable nitrogen which is the component most responsible for "burning".
The rest of the advice is fine...more water will help alleviate the symptoms, but if it is already burned badly, quite probably only time combined w/ water will help as the absorption will already have taken place
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Duane Bozarth writes:

But still at about 1 percent yield vs 6 to 50 or more percent synthetically. But leaching is a potentially concentrating process. That's how KNO3 was separated from dilute waste in ancient times.
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Greetings from sunny north Austin!
I've never burned my lawn the way you describe, but some neighbors did the first summer they moved in. Their entire lawn was completely dead brown from overfertilizing. The next year it started coming back, and the year after that it was fully green again.
It'll take time, but the grass will eventually come back on its own. You probably don't need to water every other day. I'd cut back to every four or five days, with occasional additional watering if it starts getting too crunchy.
Daremo wrote:

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