Dark green, finely textured, Zoysia Grass is a popular choice for Florida lawns. With its good tolerance to salt, foot traffic, and shade, the choice of Zoysia makes sense. Zoysia grows lower and more slowly than other southern grasses, providing a lush, dense, manicured lawn. Let’s look at how to properly care for Zoysia Grass so it will flourish on your south Florida lawn.
Zoysia, like all southern lawn grasses depends on rainfall, sun, shade, and the fertility of the soil. Of course, that means if your location provides full sun and high amounts of rain, you’ll find your zoysia growing more quickly, which means more mowing. On the other hand, if you have full sun and only average rainfall, there will still be a beautiful lawn but with less mowing.
Zoysia grass requires less fertilization than other grasses, but a zoysia lawn still needs the proper amount of the right fertilizer to perform at the highest level – producing a lawn that is healthy and resistant to insects and disease. Feeding appropriately also helps avoid thatch build-up. For zoysia grass this means fertilizing in spring and summer.
Zoysia Lawn Maintenance
For new zoysia lawns, you will want to water frequently enough to keep it moist for approximately two weeks or until your sod is rooted. Don’t overwater! When the new zoysia is rooted, you’ll want to mow right away at the recommended height (see Mowing below). When rooted, you’ll also want to apply fertilizer.
In the case of established zoysia lawns, you need to be aware of the diseases zoysia is susceptible to, including leaf spot, brown patch, rust, and dollar spot as wells as insect problems. Your professional lawn care service, local garden center, or county extension agent should be able to help you diagnose any problem and help with treatment. Moles, crickets, and nematodes are the most common pests affecting zoysia in the south, where nematodes love the sandier soils. Again, your professional lawn care service, local garden center, or country extension agent can help you with solution before serious damage to your zoysia lawn occurs.
Zoysia Grass Watering
When Zoysia is fully established it is more drought resistant than other grasses and should be watered only as needed. Normally watering rates of one inch per week are average, but in areas with less than average rainfall, heat and sun evaporation mean more watering. New zoysia lawns should be watered in early afternoon while established lawns should be watered in the early morning hours to avoid diseases.
Fertilizing Your Zoysia Grass
As previously mentioned, zoysia grass requires less fertilizer than other southern lawn grasses. Provided watering is appropriate, fertilizer should be applied at two to four pounds per 1,000 square feet of lawn, annually. If a higher growth rate is desired, more fertilizer will be needed. Fertilization rates are determined by your soil fertility. In addition, zoysia flourishes with an ideal pH level of 6.0 to 6.5, which means an application of lime may be needed regularly.
Mowing Your Zoysia Grass
Zoysia grass thrives when cut to heights of one to two inches. The longer zoysia is allowed to grow, the tougher the blades become, meaning you’ll be sharpening your mower more often. Zoysia can be mown once or twice weekly if fertilization and watering schedules require it. If not, mowing will typically be required only every seven to 14 days.
For new zoysia lawns, mowing should be done when the zoysia is 2.5 to three inches tall, to a cut height of one to two inches.
With the proper care, you zoysia lawn will grow well, but should you need assistance, the lawn care specialists at Xtreme Landscaping are just a phone call away.