Everything You Need To Know About Zoysia Grass (2024)

What Is Zoysia Grass?

Zoysia Grass is a warm season grass that was refined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Professional Golfer’s Association (PGA) in the 1950s. It is a grass cultivar that is thick, drought-resistant and loves heat. In our Midwestern climate, it turns brown in the Fall and Winter. It doesn’t need a lot of water to stay green in the Summer, so less sprinkling and irrigation is needed. It also doesn’t need as much mowing because this grass cultivar is slow growing in height. However, Zoysia propagates laterally, or creeps and is quick to spread out, often out competing weeds and other grasses. It does not spread quickly initially and usually is planted via sod rolls or small two inch by two inch sod “plugs'' instead of seeding. Zoysia Grass often has a lot of thatch and needs to be aerated more often than other lawns. It is frequently planted on golf courses, baseball fields and football fields, due to its high tolerance for high traffic.

What Causes Zoysia Grass?

If you have Zoysia Grass in your yard, it’s likely that someone who owned your home previously ordered Zoysia plugs from a newspaper advertisem*nt in the 1950s and 1960s and planted them in your lawn. Zoysia is not native to the Midwest, but grows in the wild in Asia and Australia. It has been cultivated and planted in the United States.

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How To Get Rid Of Zoysia Grass?

Zoysia is notoriously hard to get rid of. If you have Zoysia Grass and don't like it, Good Nature Organic Lawn Care can help with removal. We can come and cut out your Zoysia and give it to someone who wants it! Then, Good Nature will be happy to plant a new lawn for you. If you choose to remove the Zoysia Grass yourself, expect to do some heavy digging and slicing the grass patches out of the soil. You will probably also need to add some more top soil, before establishing another grass variety.

How To Prevent Zoysia Grass In Your Lawn?

If your neighbor has Zoysia, it’s likely you will have some creeping into your yard. You’ll need to be diligent about pulling it out, but it is slow growing, so you have time on your side! Again, expect to literally cut it out of your lawn.

Will Zoysia Grass Take Over Other Grasses?

Zoysia is considered invasive and is known to take over lawns, when given enough time. That includes crowding out other grasses that exist in your lawn or newly seeded grasses that you plant.

Will Zoysia Grass Choke Out Weeds?

Zoysia Grass will not only crowd out other grass, but it will also out compete other plant species that are considered weeds.

What Grasses Mix Well with Zoysia Grass?

If you are starting your Zoysia Grass lawn, you are going to have Bare Spots if you are using plugs. In the instance that you are using seeds, you will need another grass to fill in spots that is faster growing. Often, Zoysia is mixed with cool season grasses such as Kentucky Bluegrass and Tall fescue. At the start, your lawn will remain green into the Winter, but eventually, Zoysia will take over and your lawn will go dormant.

Our general Ohio recommendation is a mix of 5% Microclover, 90% Turf Type Tall Fescue, and 5% Kentucky Bluegrass for our region. For Grass Seed, our Tuff Turf Lawn Seed provides the Turf Type Tall Fescue and Kentucky Bluegrass recommended.

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How Can I Plant Zoysia Grass?

If you like Zoysia Grass and want to spread it throughout your lawn, you can order additional plugs online and plant them in the areas that do not have Zoysia Grass. The best practice is to plant a two inch plug every six inches. A good website to buy Zoysia Grass plugs is www.zoysiafarms.com. If you would like help with this project, Good Nature is happy to help plant the plugs as well.

Contact us to discuss your options and gather more information.

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Everything You Need To Know About Zoysia Grass (2024)


Everything You Need To Know About Zoysia Grass? ›

Zoysia Grass at a Glance

What is the downside of Zoysia grass? ›

Often, the lawn will stay brown well into Spring, which is a deal breaker for some. So, if year-round color is necessary for you, you may want to think twice before choosing zoysia grass. Zoysia will not tolerate heavy traffic during these dormant periods. Another negative is the very poor shade tolerance under trees.

What are the best conditions for Zoysia grass to grow? ›

Zoysia grass is a warm-weather grass. It grows best in very warm to hot weather, above 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It will stop growing when the first frost hits and remain dormant and brown throughout winter. Zoysia tolerates a wide range of humidity levels.

How do I keep my Zoysia grass healthy? ›

Fertilization is essential to keep Zoysia grass healthy and vibrant. Apply a balanced fertilizer in the spring and early summer to promote growth. Avoid excessive nitrogen, as it can lead to thatch buildup.

How often should Zoysia grass be watered? ›

When out of dormancy (when green and actively growing), Zoysia grass typically requires 1 inch of water per week. During very hot weather, Zoysia may require as much as 2 inches per week. During times of extreme drought, Zoysia grass may go dormant. Think of dormancy as a type of hibernation.

Why is Zoysia so hard to grow? ›

Grass seed, including Zoysia seed, is fragile and can be difficult to establish. Seeding and initial care must be performed during the warmest times of the year, when soil moisture levels are hard to control. Extreme care must be used to keep the seed and seedlings from drying out and dying.

What killed my Zoysia grass? ›

Zoysia grass is intolerant of standing water and may die out in low areas where water can collect. Although root rots may be obvious, many other problems may not be as obvious. Shallow rooting, increased susceptibility to disease, and attractiveness to grubs are a few of the other problems improper watering can cause.

How do you prepare the soil for Zoysia grass? ›

Prepare the soil by loosening to a depth of 1–2 inches. Conduct a soil test to be sure your soil has the proper nutrients it needs for a healthy lawn. The pH should be between 5.8 and 6.5. Apply fertilizer and soil amendment at the recommended rates.

What makes Zoysia grass grow faster? ›

Like all warm-season grasses, Zoysia grass thrives in heat and peaks in growth during late spring and summer months. The optimal time for major lawn care tasks is during this time of vigorous growth. As cool fall temperatures arrive, Zoysia grass slows and begins to go dormant.

What helps Zoysia grass spread? ›

If you like Zoysia Grass and want to spread it throughout your lawn, you can order additional plugs online and plant them in the areas that do not have Zoysia Grass. The best practice is to plant a two inch plug every six inches.

Should you leave grass clippings on Zoysia grass? ›

If those clumps are left to sit on the lawn, then it can cause the live grass beneath it to be subject to disease, rot and ultimately death. Bagging your zoysia grass clippings will allow the grass that is left after a mowing to grow and thrive in a healthy manner.

Why do you put sand on Zoysia grass? ›

Warm season lawns that spread via stolons and rhizomes (runners), such as Bermudagrass, Zoysiagrass, and Centipedegrass, respond well to leveling with sand/compost mixtures like Level Mix. The runners are tough and recover from having "dirt" applied on top of them.

How do I make my zoysia grass thicker? ›

Your grass will grow thicker and healthier with regular fertilization during the growing season. The need for fertilizer varies based on the square footage and climate. Typically, Zoysia grass requires only minimal nitrogen, about 1 pound per 1,000 square feet during the growing season.

What is the disadvantage of zoysia grass? ›

However, there are some downsides to Zoysia grass. For one, it is slow to establish and may take several months to grow. It is also not as tolerant of heavy foot traffic as Bermuda grass, and it can be prone to thatch buildup.

How to make zoysia grass greener? ›

To make your Zoysia grass greener, apply a high-quality fertilizer with a balanced nutrient ratio suitable for Zoysia grass. In addition, follow proper watering practices and ensure the grass receives adequate sunlight.

Which is better, bermuda or Zoysia? ›

Bermuda generally outperforms zoysia in both aspects, making it suitable for hot, dry climates, like Celebration Bermudagrass, which thrives due to its Australian origins.

Will Zoysia choke out other grasses? ›

Zoysia is considered invasive and is known to take over lawns, when given enough time. That includes crowding out other grasses that exist in your lawn or newly seeded grasses that you plant.

Which grass is better, Zoysia or st augustine? ›

St. Augustines only spread through the above-the-ground runners, stolons. They are usually better than zoysias at choking out weeds for this reason. Since zoysias grow with both methods, they usually rank higher in wear tolerance, injury recovery and drought tolerance.

Which is better Zoysia or Fescue? ›

Zoysia is a much more dense turf, far fewer problems with fungus, loves the heat and sunshine, never needs re-seeding, can grow in poor soils much better, and weed control is MUCH easier on the rare occasion that weeds are able to make a stand. As Sod, they are both about the same price if Fescue isn't a bit higher.

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