Sod is the best way to get a weed-free, full-coverage new zoysia lawn. Short mowing heights generally keep crabgrass under control, because it never gets tall enough to go to seed. This will ensure you have killed the grass, and it will give weed seeds time to germinate and be sprayed, which helps to eliminate weeds in the future. Plugs are 2”-4” cores of sod with a root system, rhizomes, stolons, and leaves. Soon, the lawn will have dead patches of grass that pull up like a loose carpet. Soils that are low in nitrogen are usually loose, sandy soils that can’t retain water. In some climates, you may need to irrigate occasionally over the winter during extended dry periods. a welcome alternative to water-greedy lawn grasses in much of the United States. The bottoms of the sprigs should be covered with soil, but the tips of the grass blades should be exposed. You may need to wait until later in the year before you move on to step 2. Lush, colorful flower beds increase curb appeal while attracting bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. Additional Zoysia Care Tips Avoid removing more than 1/3 of the total grass blade length at any single mowing to keep your grass thick and healthy. Zoysia is a dense turf, and with inconsistent mowing, it can build up a thick thatch layer. – When you cut the grass, don’t ever cut more than 1/3 of the grass. Although zoysia is an aggressive grass that can heal from winter kill, this can slow down the turf’s ability to choke out weeds during the summer and repair high-traffic areas. Although Gainesville lawns have historically been St. Augustine grass, Zoysia has began making a major push as the turf of choice for a few years. Contact: (352) 378-5296 | Info@TheMastersLawnCare.com | Privacy Policy. With valid and proven claims of chinch bug-resistance and drought tolerance, even strict homeowner's associations like Haile Plantation that previously only allowed St. Augustine lawns have begun to allow Zoysia sod in their neighborhood. If brown patch is a problem each spring, you may need to spray a preventative fungicide to keep spores under control. If these control methods do not resolve your rust problem, you can spray a fungicide on the affected areas. You can also use layers of cardboard or other solid materials that will block the sun. Nitrogen washes out of the soil easier than most other plant nutrients, so sandy soils are unable to hold on to synthetic fertilizers, even if they have a slow-release formula. Mow the lawn when it is over 2” tall, and mow it at least once before dormancy. Dethatch in the spring after the first mowing. Zoysia should be planted in mid spring to early summer, but it can be planted up to 60 days before the first frost. As long as your temperatures are fairly warm year-round, this is the best solution for you. Leaf spot is difficult to identify without close inspection of an infected leaf. Preventing Your Pet from Causing Urine Damage Water a patch of lawn after a dog urinates on it. Other than using appropriate fungicides targeted toward its treatment, it may be necessary to retrieve grass clippings after or during mowing and properly disposing of them to prevent further spreading of this grass rust. Learn more about identifying and treating specific pest problems here. Before you choose the cultivar for your lawn, research the varieties and cultivars that do well in your area. If you have an irrigation system, you will need to schedule 4-5 sessions each day that are long enough to get the soil wet, but not so long that water begins to run off and wash away the seed. Zoysia is able to handle shade better in hot, dry climates where fungus spores cannot spread easily. Average soils are crumbly without being sandy. Soil preparation for zoysia will be similar to most other grasses. The grass spreads by above-ground stems called ‘stolons’ and underground stems called ‘rhizomes’. The good thing about these soils is that you can incorporate aged manures and compost for fertility, and the loose texture will leave plenty of wiggle room for zoysia’s dense root system. Zoysia lawns are incredibly resilient, and most are able to repair themselves with adequate irrigation, nutrition, and time. If you find them, spray at 2-week intervals with a selective insecticide. Click here to read our review of a pet and child-safe natural lawn fertilizer. If … bluegrass. Product recommendations not personally owned are based on the author’s knowledge of the company, product, reliability, and reputation. Fescue and zoysia don’t cross paths often, but when they do it’s not much of a fight. Zoysia is one of the recommended grass species for clay soils due to its ability to tolerate compacted soils and low fertility. Learn more from our article Will Zoysia Choke Out Crabgrass? Whether you’re establishing a new lawn or troubleshooting an old one, our ultimate guide to Zoysia has everything you need to know to grow a healthy, low-maintenance, weed-free turf. Will Zoysia Choke Out Fescue? Belair is good for lawns in the transition zone and shady lawns in the deep south. Dig up and remove as much plant material as possible; Bermuda can regenerate from tiny root segments left in the soil. The difference is the fact that Zoysia actually lives through the drought whereas St. Augustine will die. Zeon has moderate shade and drought tolerance. Clay soils either resist water or if they become saturated, they hold on to excess moisture for too long. Use a slow-release nitrogen fertilizer that will last up to six months in the soil. If we can be of help in any way, please call our office at (352) 378-LAWN today, or fill out our online request by clicking the above links. Fescue thrives with cold winters, and this combined with severe winter kill may give fescue a strong foothold in your zoysia lawn. Zoysia has a deep, strong root system that can penetrate compacted soils and withstand the drought stress that is a common side effect of clay soil. If some plants have already gone to seed, bag the grass clippings when you mow to prevent spreading the seeds across your lawn. As a soil becomes more dense, it is able to hold on to more nutrients, especially nitrogen. If you have a large infestation, apply an insecticide at the rate and frequency directed by the pesticide manufacturer. While Z. matrella is aggressive, and can choke out most weeds, it takes a few years for this turf to become established. Zoysia is one of the grasses that are most susceptible to rust. See Best Fertilizer For A Clay Soil Lawn: Why Ingredients Matter. It is resistant to most pests and diseases, and it is more durable than most other cultivars. If you back off too soon, weed seeds will germinate in the bare patches of soil. Spray broadleaf herbicides in the spring as seeds begin germinating, and continue to spray as weeds show up in your lawn. The first step is to irrigate your lawn. Sprigs are 4”-6” sections of rhizomes and stolons without a root system. However, grasses and weeds can come back if you simply till them under. If your lawn does have significant winter kill, you can plug your lawn after it breaks dormancy to help fill in bare patches. Spread a 3”-6” layer of compost over the soil and till it in. This is obviously the most expensive option. You can use a rotary mower on zoysia, but make sure the blades are sharp, and never cut off more than 1/3rd of the top growth to prevent shock. Empire Zoysia is a grass with natural characteristics that allow it to handle Australia’s hot, dry climate. Mow zoysia at ¾”-2”, depending on the cultivar. If you live in a dry climate, you will likely need to water once per week to prevent your lawn from going dormant. Mow weekly with sharp blades when the grass is dry. Earlier planting dates will give the turf more time to fill in and create a deeper root system before winter. However, this will result in a sub-par lawn that can create and compound problems. Unlike chinch bugs, grubs are more common in well-irrigated lawns. This combination of above and below ground stems allows for the thick, dense growth and e… Spray a preventative herbicide each spring to prevent weed seeds from germinating, and pull up any surviving plants before they go to seed. Follow the directions on the back of your seed bag to determine how much seed to plant. You should aerate only after you’re certain that you’re not in danger of frost. The best times to plant zoysia grass are in late spring (once all chances of frost have passed) to early summer. Zoysia grass grows best in USDA planting zones 6-11. Adding extra seed to an area will not help it fill in faster. If the area continues to grow larger, you will have to use a chemical treatment. Put sprigs in a wheelbarrow or bucket and walk across the lawn planting sprigs every 6”. The closer you space plugs, the faster your lawn will fill in. Quick-release fertilizers may result in a few weeks of sudden growth, but this only attracts pests and diseases without encouraging long-term results. If possible, use a reel mower (link to Amazon), and keep the lawn below 2” throughout the growing season. See "What is core aerification and when should I do it?" Zoysia can handle low nitrogen, but it may lose its deep green color and appear more yellow. Apart from these issues, there are … Zoysia should get .5”-1” of water per week. Empire is chinch bug resistant, which makes it a good choice for lawns in the transition zone with very dry summers. Option 1: Spread and bury the sprigs by hand. To learn more read Will Zoysia Choke Out Fescue? Just break up the soil into clods and try to get a nice, even, soft seedbed. Almost all common lawn diseases are the result of abnormal weather conditions or unfavorable microclimates within your lawn. This option is best for sandy or loose soils, as it can cause compaction in clay. However, now you have brown spots in your Zoysia lawn and you want to know how to get them green again. Spring aerating is best. Cavalier grows into a thick, lush, deep green carpet. What happened? Thriving Yard is a privately owned website. The best way to control Bermuda grass is to pick up and remove clippings and spray or dig up individual plants. However, poor soil, drought stress, winter kill, and high humidity can slow down zoysia’s aggressive growth, giving weeds a chance to invade bare patches of soil. Just be careful to not overwork the soil. The goal of soil prep is to remove as much of the past lawn as possible, including the root system, and to develop a weed-free soil bed for the new grass. Thriving Yard is an affiliate for companies including Amazon Associates and earn a commission on qualifying purchases. With zoysia, you want to rent a core aerator and put it on an aggressive setting. The best way to prevent weed infestations is to follow a maintenance schedule that gives your lawn a healthy foundation with strong roots. This can give centipede grass an advantage if it creeps into your lawn, and it may take several rounds of sprays and manual removal before you gain control. The best way to prevent dying, brown patches of grass in any lawn is to follow the proper maintenance schedule and to continue to build up a … . It seems that their urine is killing the grass or at least browning it for a week or so. To control billbug populations, spray a preventative insecticide during the summer when eggs are hatching. Allow the lawn to go dormant in the summer so you can focus on spraying and removing Bermuda plants. Rye grass can’t survive the heat of summer and will be overtaken by your Zoysia. If zoysia is maintained properly, it can grow a thick, deep-green carpet that resists most pests, diseases, and weed infestations. Zoysia grass is known for its ability to stand up to heat, drought, heavy foot traffic and a variety of other challenges. Bermuda grass can be spread when mower blades chop up stolons and fling them across the lawn, so removing clippings can slow the spread. They hold shape, but can’t be molded. Depending on its variety, Zoysia grass will grow in well-drained soil with acidic to neutral pH. Hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 10, zoysia stands up to heat, humidity and traffic when other grasses are struggling. Obtain a soil test (link to Amazon) each spring to test for other nutrients in your soil. You can also download a copy for free if you’d like: Healthy lawns have fewer pest and disease problems. The more cores you remove from the lawn, the more compost you can rake in later. Mark underground lines and till the soil. WEED CONTROL. Back off to 2-3 times per day until the sprigs have filled in most of the lawn. Fertilize an established lawn with a 16-4-8 product specifically labeled for zoysia grass in mid-May and again in mid-July. Bag the clippings, and dispose of them in plastic bags. Most leaf spot infections will go away as soon as the nighttime temperatures warm up and the humidity drops. Spread sod over your lawn, making sure to cut away holes for your irrigation system and any access covers. This prevents fungal infection. However, zoysia grows best from sprigs, plugs, or sod, even if seed is an option. Keep sod consistently moist for the first few weeks after planting. Keep your zoysia lawn at least 1 ½ inches tall and remove no … Although zoysia is a slow starter, once it is established, it can choke out most weeds, and quickly repair damage due to cold temperatures or traffic. If your Zoysia lawn is suffering from dead spots this summer like the photo above, you aren't alone. You do not have to till the soil into dust. Begin mowing in the spring as soon as the lawn is above 2”, and continue mowing until the lawn goes dormant for the winter. Chemical-free: The fall before planting, spread tarps or solid plastic film across your lawn and anchor them with stakes. I’d say go easy on the fertilizer, if ever. A zoysia grass lawn is frequently touted as the cure all for the homeowner’s lawn cares. Rent (or buy) a heavy-duty tiller. Dethatch, aerate, and topdress in the spring to build up a healthy soil that fights off infections and infestations. Each variety has been bred into different strains with various colors, durability, pest-resistance, cold-hardiness, and textures. All living matter is … Try pruning the surrounding landscape to allow sunlight into the area. Water 4-5 times per day, like you would with seeds, and keep watering until you see active growth. This will encourage deep, healthy root growth. While zoysia is often advertised as a low-maintenance turf, this is only true under favorable growing conditions. Sunday Lawn Care offers a lawn-safe weed killer derived from iron. In most cases, dead plant material is good for the soil. It is a durable grass which can repair itself quickly and withstand heavy traffic. Bermuda does not tolerate shade, so taller mowing heights may reduce the spread, but it’s not very effective. It has done wonderfully except that my dog and the neighbors dogs use it as a bathroom. To control an existing billbug population, spray an insecticide that targets the adult beetles just after sunset, when they are most active. Option 2: Spread the sprigs across your lawn and till them in on a shallow setting. The best way to prevent brown patch is to avoid overwatering, and to irrigate first thing in the morning, to give the leaves time to dry off and prevent splashing the fungus onto healthy patches of grass. If your Zoysia lawn is suffering from dead spots this summer like the photo above, you aren't alone. Suddenly, this healthy low-water Zoysia ‘Zeon’ grass turned yellow, patchy and died in spots. Empire is softer and more dense than Meyer, and it requires fewer fertilizer applications. This means herbicide manufacturers can develop broad-spectrum weed killers that target broadleaf weeds but are harmless to your lawn. If you cannot control leaf spot by changing your maintenance practices, you may have to spray a fungicide. It is best to remove as much plant material as possible before moving on to step 3. If you’re able to start from scratch and establish a new lawn, you can get a head start on soil improvement by mixing in a thick layer of compost to your topsoil. Billbugs are brownish beetles with an elongated snout. Moisture plays an important role in disease development. Zoysia is able to resist most pests and diseases if it is maintained properly. With valid and proven claims of chinch bug-resistance and drought tolerance, even strict homeowner's associations like Haile If you feel that your irrigation system isn't functioning properly, we would love to schedule a, tutorial on how to change your Gainesville irrigation timer settings, $95 One-Hour Irrigation Tune-up with Mike, schedule a meeting with our lawn pest control technician, Increasing the frequency (watering more often), Increasing the duration (minutes that the zones run). The only lawns where fescue might become a real problem is in areas where the winters are on the verge of being too cold for zoysia. Once the lawn begins active growth, slowly back off on irrigating until you are able to mow. It can grow a dense, thick carpet, but it lacks the underground runners, rhizomes, that help these grasses choke out other plants. Sprigging is similar to seeding, but it has a higher success rate. Consistent moisture will help produce weed-free coverage. Cavalier is also used for golf courses, but as a fairway or tee box grass. St. Augustine is one of the least aggressive warm-season grasses. During the fall, mowing will occur less often—keeping your zoysia slightly higher will encourage deeper root growth for winter. If you’d rather not use chemicals, check out Dandelion Doom (link to Sunday). Zoysia grass faces gardening problems such as early browning, brown crown spots, and spots, rust that hinder its growth. MOWING. However, if you live in a cooler climate area, you may choose to dye your Zoysia lawn green. Brownish gray lesions along the leaf blade indicate leaf spot, which is relatively harmless. Reel mowers are the only way to cut extremely low lawns. Aerate the day after dethatching, when the soil is still bare and moist. If you did not spray your lawn, you can compost the dead plant material. Centipede grass stays green longer during periods of drought, so you can spray it without harming the zoysia. Because the Zoysia is dormant, it will not be harmed by the over-seeding. Choose this grass for low-maintenance, high-traffic lawns. Zoysia Grass Problems. Zoysia can grow in poor soils with low fertility. The 2 Key Factors Explained. Care for grass sprigs is the same as for plugs. In fact, the grass grows so dense, few lawn weeds are able to penetrate a healthy mass of established Zoysia lawn. Aeration allows oxygen into the soil, which helps encourage root growth and water infiltration. Aeration is the process of punching holes into the turf and sod to alleviate compaction. Pull up a tuft of grass to inspect for chinch bugs. Below is quick and easy reference calendar for the essential maintence of zoysia. After aerating, you can incorporate compost directly into the soil. Topdressing with compost is a good way to provide slow-release nitrogen, and in most lawns, this can replace annual fertilization. If brown patch is severe and corrected maintenance practices are not helping, spray a fungicide to kill off the remaining spores. If you topdress with compost each spring, you may not need to fertilize at all. Some weeds can be controlled with preventative sprays, but other, invasive warm-season grasses are more difficult to remove. You can use as many as 4 plugs per square foot or as few as 1 plug per square foot. So, what can be done for a zoysia grass lawn in the fall? Mow zoysia weekly to remove infected blades and to encourage deep root growth. Drought tolerance. It will green up as soon as you apply water. This cultivar has a sophisticated, manicured look, but it requires frequent mowing, consistent irrigation, and a detailed pest management and fertilization schedule. Broadleaf weeds are any weed that’s not a grass. With sod, the soil doesn’t dry out like it would with seed, sprigs, or plugs, so you may only need to water 2-3 times per day, depending on the time of year. Much like human breathing, it’s essential to healthy grass. An alternative to grass plugs or sod is sprigging. These can be fixed by changing your irrigation and mowing schedule, and spraying fungicides when diseases get out of hand. Water conservation and a healthy, beautiful lawn aren't mutually exclusive. Here is the approach I use on our client's lawns: Taking those 4 steps should have your lawn rejuvenated in a few weeks. Irrigate weekly early in the morning, and allow the turf to dry out before you water again. Billbugs feed on the crown and stolons of the grass, which are responsible for above-ground growth. However, for an attractive stand of healthy grass, you will need to fertilize during the summer to help encourage deep root growth and improve durability. You can use plugs to establish new lawns, or to fill in bare patches of an existing lawn. Large areas of zoysia grass or the entire lawn can be core aerified in late May or early June to help alleviate compaction and then plugged or sodded at the proper time (late May to early June in the St. Louis area). However, you will want to make a new, separate compost pile and only use this compost in areas where you don’t mind some weed seeds or a few sprigs of old lawn grass coming back. Cavalier has exceptionally long, fine leaves, which makes it one of the tallest zoysia cultivars. For more information see St. Augustine vs. Zoysia: Which One Is Right For Your Lawn? Zoysia can tolerate most soils and climates as long as the winters are not too cold. They will cause large brown patches in your turf, starting at a border of the lawn and working deeper into the center. While zoysia can tolerate a few grubs per square foot, an infestation can kill large patches of turf before you notice too much damage. Emerald Zoysia is a very fine textured grass. Zeon is considered to be one of the best overall zoysia cultivars, with its only real drawback being a slow establishing period and limited availability. When maintained at a low height, it may resemble a putting green. These are small black bugs that live in the soil and eat the roots and leaves of your grass. Lightly tamp sod into the soil and water immediately. Mow consistently, and fertilize in the summer to encourage faster growth. If possible, use a reel mower (link to Amazon), and keep the lawn below 2” throughout the growing season. Zoysia can tolerate light to moderate shade, depending on other factors like temperature and humidity. Regular mowing, watering, and fertilizing as seen earlier are the best ways to prevent these problems. Brown patch starts as a dark green, wet area of the lawn that slowly grows a small, yellow/orange ring around the perimeter, leaving dead grass at its center. Zoysia prefers hot summers and mild winters. Bermuda is an aggressive, low-growing grass that is nearly impossible to remove because it spreads through rhizomes, stolons, and seed. Zoysia is an aggressive grower, so most lawns can fully recover after a full growing season. Fertilize the lawn when it is about 50% green. Spray fescue during the spring before zoysia comes out of dormancy. As the climates become more humid, or the soils are more alkaline, zoysia becomes an increasingly more high-maintenance turf grass. Average soils can support zoysia without much chemical intervention. Amend with specific fertilizers as needed. If you can keep the grub population to a minimum, the aggressive nature of zoysia will allow it to outgrow the damage from remaining grubs. Z. matrella can tolerate light frost, although it may suffer after a few hard frosts. Fescue is a bunching grass while zoysia is a creeping grass, so zoysia is able to choke out fescue under most growing conditions. Once the plugs begin active growth, gradually back off on irrigation until the turf has filled in. Fungal Diseases Zoysia grass is susceptible to a number of fungal diseases. This can help deter them from doing further damage. Reel mowers are the easiest tools to use on low-growing grasses, because they cut blades of grass, while rotary mowers can tear and pull grass and damage the crowns. This will provide a healthy foundation for your turf that improves water retention, drainage, nutrient content, and overall health. Diamond is one of the few turf grasses suitable for putting greens. Seasonal Maintenance Guides for Your Zoysia. Rust spores are always present in a lawn, but they take 1-2 weeks to infect and damage a blade of grass. It is such a prolific nuisance that there are multiple sprays and chemical control... 5 Tips for Creating Beautiful, Low-Maintenance Flower Beds. It is most common in cool, shady, moist areas of the lawn. Unlike corporate website companies, the authors on this website regularly use many of the tips and recommendations provided in their own garden and lawncare. Belair, also known as El Toro, is one of the most cold-hardy and shade-tolerant cultivars of Z. japonica. At this point, you should be able to resume a normal irrigation schedule, but keep a close eye on fresh sod and irrigate more often if necessary. If the thatch layer is over ½” thick, rent a power rake at a hardware store and follow the directions to dethatch your lawn. Whether Zoysia is right for you depends on where you live, your lawn care goals, and how you use your lawn. Sprigs will go from green to brown in the first few weeks; this is normal. This fungus is most prevalent during mid-summer, when temperatures are in the mid 80s and the mornings are still damp and humid. Z. matrella, also known as Manila grass,has a fine texture, low growing height, and dense growth habit. As compared to zoysia grass, which is a warm season grass, Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon) is a hot weather grass that grows aggressively in Southern states.Because of its fast growth rate, Bermuda grass needs more of everything than zoysia grass does: more water, more fertilizer, and more frequent mowing. Side By Side Comparison. Right now the most common question is how to convert these zoysia lawns to a cool-season grass like tall fescue or tall fescue/Ky. Cores will break down and return nutrients to the soil. If you have consistent pest problems, spray preventative pesticides each spring and fall, depending on the pest’s lifecycle. Empire must be propagated by sprig, plug, or sod. Dense, clay soil can hold on to large amounts of nitrogen due to the fact that water cannot drain freely into the subsoil. Cavalier has a moderate pest resistance, but its aggressive nature is able to choke out most weeds. Bury 2/3 of each sprig with a few inches of soil. 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