Preventing drought dormancy is one of the best ways to prevent weed infestations. If you mixed compost into the soil, your lawn will not need to be fertilized until the following year. bluegrass. While it may seem like more is better in terms of soil fertility, large amounts of nutrients come at a cost with soil texture. If you live in a humid climate, you may only need to irrigate a few times during the summer. If some plants have already gone to seed, bag the grass clippings when you mow to prevent spreading the seeds across your lawn. What happened? Dethatch in the spring after the first mowing. Crabgrass spreads through rhizomes, stolons, and seeds; one plant can send out over 700 runners and produce over 150,000 seeds in a single growing season. Consistent moisture will help produce weed-free coverage. link to How to Keep Crabgrass Out of Flower Beds, link to 5 Tips for Creating Beautiful, Low-Maintenance Flower Beds, Click here to read our review of a pet and child-safe natural lawn fertilizer, Does Lawn Aeration Really Work? Topdressing with compost is a good way to provide slow-release nitrogen, and in most lawns, this can replace annual fertilization. See Best Fertilizer For A Clay Soil Lawn: Why Ingredients Matter. Zoysia grass faces gardening problems such as early browning, brown crown spots, and spots, rust that hinder its growth. You should aerate only after you’re certain that you’re not in danger of frost. Some weeds can be controlled with preventative sprays, but other, invasive warm-season grasses are more difficult to remove. Sod is the best way to get a weed-free, full-coverage new zoysia lawn. Preventing Your Pet from Causing Urine Damage Water a patch of lawn after a dog urinates on it. Centipede grass does not tolerate drought, so one of the best deterrents for centipede grass is to allow your lawn to go dormant during the summer. As the climates become more humid, or the soils are more alkaline, zoysia becomes an increasingly more high-maintenance turf grass. Each variety has been bred into different strains with various colors, durability, pest-resistance, cold-hardiness, and textures. Irrigate your lawn thoroughly the day before power raking. Plant when daily temperatures are consistently in the 70s. Soils that are low in nitrogen are usually loose, sandy soils that can’t retain water. Consistent cold stress can attract pests and diseases to your lawn, so if you find yourself constantly repairing winter damage, it may be time to invest in a more cold-hardy lawn. So, although the roots are surrounded by nitrogen, they are unable to absorb it, which essentially results in low fertility conditions. Zoysia should not be aerated in the fall because it goes dormant. Bermuda is an aggressive, low-growing grass that is nearly impossible to remove because it spreads through rhizomes, stolons, and seed. Try pruning the surrounding landscape to allow sunlight into the area. After aerating, you can incorporate compost directly into the soil. If you live in a dry climate, you will likely need to water once per week to prevent your lawn from going dormant. 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. Water immediately after planting, and continue to water 4-5 times per day for the first few weeks. Thriving Yard is a privately owned website. Grubs are the larvae of Japanese beetles, and they feed on grass roots from July-September before they morph into adults. Cavalier has exceptionally long, fine leaves, which makes it one of the tallest zoysia cultivars. Option 3: Rent a roller. However, if you live in a cooler climate area, you may choose to dye your Zoysia lawn green. Let the area dry out, and mow to remove as much of the infected grass as possible. Z. matrella, also known as Manila grass,has a fine texture, low growing height, and dense growth habit. If you’d rather not use chemicals, check out Dandelion Doom (link to Sunday). FERTILIZATION. 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. Dense, carpetlike growth and outstanding drought tolerance make zoysia grass (Zoysia spp.) If your lawn does have significant winter kill, you can plug your lawn after it breaks dormancy to help fill in bare patches. If you cannot control leaf spot by changing your maintenance practices, you may have to spray a fungicide. If you have a large infestation, apply an insecticide at the rate and frequency directed by the pesticide manufacturer. You can’t replant or plug these areas in fall but you can use the opportunity to kill and remove any perennial weeds or cool season grass weeds, such as fescue, that may have invaded these areas with a glyphosate product in fall or spring before embarking on the renovation process in late May. Short mowing heights generally keep crabgrass under control, because it never gets tall enough to go to seed. This will provide a healthy foundation for your turf that improves water retention, drainage, nutrient content, and overall health. 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. Rake up and remove all dead plant material and rocks. 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). If the area continues to grow larger, you will have to use a chemical treatment. Zoysia Grass Problems. The first step is to irrigate your lawn. Soil maintenance and improvement is the most overlooked factor in a healthy lawn. Disposing of plant material: If you sprayed your lawn, it is best to take the dead plant material to a local yard waste dump. Cores will break down and return nutrients to the soil. 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. Even if you remove all of the plants, seeds will lie dormant and germinate the following spring if you do not catch crabgrass early. This will prevent stress from over and under watering. Brownish gray lesions along the leaf blade indicate leaf spot, which is relatively harmless. Choose this grass for low-maintenance, high-traffic lawns. Drought tolerance. Mow in the afternoons when the blades are dry to prevent spreading the disease. Lightly tamp plugs into place, but do not stomp on them. If you already have an established zoysia lawn, you can build up your soil over time through consistent dethatching, aerating, and topdressing. The most common pest issue with Meyer is white grubs (source). Always mow when the lawn is dry, and mow lawns in humid climates at a shorter height to encourage evaporation. Use a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer to reduce the risk of burn and disease that often attacks lush succulent growth. Long story short, it holds more moisture in the ground when in drought situations to help the grass stay healthy, and it's relatively inexpensive, too. This helps to prevent compaction and improve water retention, which lowers your water and fertilizer bill. Spread out no more than about 1/2 inch of sand over low spots in mid to late spring when the zoysia grass is actively growing and it will quickly grow through the added material. That's great information to have. Once your sprigs are planted, you need to water them immediately. However, it is extremely important to realize how Zoysia grass reacts to drought and what makes it drought-tolerant. The best remedy for sandy, nitrogen-deficient soils is topdressing and leaving grass clippings on the lawn. 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. a welcome alternative to water-greedy lawn grasses in much of the United States. It isn't that it needs less water than St. Augustine lawns or that it stays green longer than St. Augustine, either. Amend with specific fertilizers as needed. While broadleaf weeds are unsightly, they are one of the easiest weeds to control because they have a different structure than grasses. Obtain a soil test (link to Amazon) each spring to test for other nutrients in your soil. Mark underground lines and till the soil. This option is best for sandy or loose soils, as it can cause compaction in clay. Rust looks like a rusty, powdery coating on a patch of grass. Seasonal Maintenance Guides for Your Zoysia. Fertilize with 1lb of nitrogen per year, split up into 2-3 applications over the spring and summer. Billbugs are brownish beetles with an elongated snout. While most Z. japonica cultivars can only be propagated vegetatively, there are some cultivars that can be grown from seed. Learn more about zoysia vs. centipede grass. Good drainage is needed to remove excess water from low-lying areas. Zoysia can grow in poor soils with low fertility. Soil preparation for zoysia will be similar to most other grasses. 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. Dethatch, aerate, and topdress in the spring to build up a healthy soil that fights off infections and infestations. The bottoms of the sprigs should be covered with soil, but the tips of the grass blades should be exposed. Before planting, make sure you have an irrigation plan to maintain consistent moisture for at least 6 weeks. Keep sod consistently moist for the first few weeks after planting. These can be fixed by changing your irrigation and mowing schedule, and spraying fungicides when diseases get out of hand. Instead of Roundup, consider an organic non-selective herbicide like Weed Warrior (Link to Sunday Lawns). In most cases, dead plant material is good for the soil. Water conservation and a healthy, beautiful lawn aren't mutually exclusive. Water 4-5 times per day for the first 4 weeks, then gradually start reducing your irrigation schedule as the grass begins to thicken. – Don’t overwater. Thatch under 1/2” thick is healthy, and this can be maintained through frequent mowing with a reel mower. . Blades of grass in the center will easily pull off the crown. It can grow a dense, thick carpet, but it lacks the underground runners, rhizomes, that help these grasses choke out other plants. Zoysia is one of the most shade-tolerant warm-season grasses, although tolerance does not mean preference. You will begin to notice billbug damage in early summer, when some patches of the lawn look like they never broke dormancy. Sydney has over 15 years of experience in lawn maintenance, landscape design, and organic gardening. WEED CONTROL. Thriving Yard is an affiliate for companies including Amazon Associates and earn a commission on qualifying purchases. Irrigate once per week in the morning, to allow leaf blades to dry out before cooler nighttime temperatures. So, what can be done for a zoysia grass lawn in the fall? As a soil becomes more dense, it is able to hold on to more nutrients, especially nitrogen. Emerald Zoysia is a very fine textured grass. Do not dethatch if your lawn is muddy. Z. japonica is coarse and dense, so it can be difficult to mow. Plant plugs at the desired spacing across the lawn. Mow zoysia weekly to remove infected blades and to encourage deep root growth. Zoysia actually turns brown before St. Augustine when facing drought stress and needs the same amount of water to stay green. Spread a 3”-6” layer of compost over the soil and till it in. Click here to read our review of a pet and child-safe natural lawn fertilizer. Spread sod over your lawn, making sure to cut away holes for your irrigation system and any access covers. Rust spores are always present in a lawn, but they take 1-2 weeks to infect and damage a blade of grass. This prevents fungal infection. Zoysia lawns are incredibly resilient, and most are able to repair themselves with adequate irrigation, nutrition, and time. Residual chemicals can stick around in compost if you were to try to add them to your compost pile. 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. In fact, the grass grows so dense, few lawn weeds are able to penetrate a healthy mass of established Zoysia lawn. It doesn’t require frequent feeding. Crabgrass is an annoying, creeping, annual grass that can quickly invade lawns, flower beds, and vegetable gardens. St. Augustine is one of the least aggressive warm-season grasses. Zoysia is a dense turf, and with inconsistent mowing, it can build up a thick thatch layer. Belair, also known as El Toro, is one of the most cold-hardy and shade-tolerant cultivars of Z. japonica. For a chemical-free treatment, try spreading diatomaceous earth (link to Amazon) over the infested area. If you feel that your irrigation system isn't functioning properly, we would love to schedule a $95 One-Hour Irrigation Tune-up with Mike, our sprinkler technician. – When you cut the grass, don’t ever cut more than 1/3 of the grass. However, if you want a pristine look and are willing to put in the extra time and effort, Diamond is an excellent option for a clean-cut lawn. Clay soils must be aerated and topdressed for grass to be able to absorb nutrients; whether they are nutrients from compost or from synthetic fertilizers. It is also the most expensive way to establish a new lawn, but giving your lawn the best start possible can cut down on maintenance costs in the long run. 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 … They will cause large brown patches in your turf, starting at a border of the lawn and working deeper into the center. To learn more read Will Zoysia Choke Out Fescue? This is the definition of a low-maintenance grass; it has few problems under normal growing conditions. Mow weekly with sharp blades when the grass is dry. It will green up as soon as you apply water. Allow the lawn to go dormant in the summer so you can focus on spraying and removing Bermuda plants. It's only $95-$125 and lasts for 3 months (which is all we really need to make it through summer). You can let zoysia go without mowing for a few weeks at a time, allow it to go dormant during dry spells, and forego fertilizing and weed control. The more cores you remove from the lawn, the more compost you can rake in later. Z. japonica is coarse and dense, so it can be difficult to mow. This allows the root system of the Zoysia to get oxygen and helps correct drainage problems. While Z. matrella is aggressive, and can choke out most weeds, it takes a few years for this turf to become established. When you mow a lawn with brown patch, make sure you mow when the lawn is dry and bag the clippings. You can do your part to manage water usage, and keep your lawn. If zoysia is maintained properly, it can grow a thick, deep-green carpet that resists most pests, diseases, and weed infestations. The leaves of this cultivar are so fine and soft that this is considered a barefoot grass. If you can easily pull stolons and runners out of the ground, and they look dead and hollow, you have billbugs. Compost is a soil conditioner, so it improves the soil along with adding nutrition. Zoysia prefers hot, dry summers, mild winters, and slightly acidic soils. Below is quick and easy reference calendar for the essential maintence of zoysia. During this period, Z. matrella cultivars are more high-maintenance. If the thatch layer is over ½” thick, rent a power rake at a hardware store and follow the directions to dethatch your lawn. Just be careful to not overwork the soil. A slow-release fertiliser works fine in delivering the medium quantity of nitrogen Zoysia turfs need. The downside to Diamond is that it is one of the most high-maintenance turf grass options for a lawn. Empire is softer and more dense than Meyer, and it requires fewer fertilizer applications. The lack of shade tolerance makes Empire more susceptible to brown patch; a fungus that thrives in humid, shady parts of the lawn. Option 1: Spread and bury the sprigs by hand. etting back the start time (running earlier in the morning so the water saturated the lawn longer before evaporation by the sun). Will Zoysia Choke Out Fescue? Much like human breathing, it’s essential to healthy grass. Aerate the day after dethatching, when the soil is still bare and moist. This cultivar has a sophisticated, manicured look, but it requires frequent mowing, consistent irrigation, and a detailed pest management and fertilization schedule. Back off to 2-3 times per day until the sprigs have filled in most of the lawn. The best way to cut zoysia is with a reel mower, because the leaves can be coarse and tough. Dig up patches of invasive grass or spot spray during active growth. Empire is chinch bug resistant, which makes it a good choice for lawns in the transition zone with very dry summers. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that approximately one-third of all U.S. residential water use is for irrigation, but more than 50% of irrigation water is wasted by inefficient use. Lush, colorful flower beds increase curb appeal while attracting bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. As the green returns and the summer rains get re-started, you can back the irrigation times up and begin fertilizing for the fall. Shade tolerance. – Zoysia doesn’t require a lot of nutrition. 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. Care for grass sprigs is the same as for plugs. Zoysia planting can also be done in early fall, but make sure to plant at least 60 days before the first fall frost. Zoysia will tolerate poor growing conditions. Centipede grass prefers more humid growing conditions than zoysia, so it can thrive in climates where zoysia suffers. However, this will result in a sub-par lawn that can create and compound problems. Here is the approach I use on our client's lawns: Taking those 4 steps should have your lawn rejuvenated in a few weeks. It’s dense growth habit and aggressive growth habit allow it to heal from winter kill and heavy foot traffic if it has enough sunlight and moisture. This method of planting has a high success rate. Sunday Lawn Care offers a lawn-safe weed killer derived from iron. There are many other zoysia cultivars that have been developed to tolerate different growing conditions. Your lawn will not suffer from going dormant. Lightly rake seeds into the top ¼” of soil. Learn more about identifying and treating specific pest problems here. This site is a participant in affiliate programs such as Amazon Associates and earns from qualifying purchases. Empire must be propagated by sprig, plug, or sod. However, now you have brown spots in your Zoysia lawn and you want to know how to get them green again. Amazon has put together some great Home Holiday Guide Deals - save money and get your holiday shopping done! Mow zoysia at ¾”-2”, depending on the cultivar. If possible, use a reel mower (link to Amazon), and keep the lawn below 2” throughout the growing season. Fertilize an established lawn with a 16-4-8 product specifically labeled for zoysia grass in mid-May and again in mid-July. Rent (or buy) a heavy-duty tiller. Because the Zoysia is dormant, it will not be harmed by the over-seeding. Cavalier grows into a thick, lush, deep green carpet. The best way to prevent weed infestations is to follow a maintenance schedule that gives your lawn a healthy foundation with strong roots. If possible, use a reel mower (link to Amazon), and keep the lawn below 2” throughout the growing season. Learn more from our article Will Zoysia Choke Out Crabgrass? Zoysia can tolerate light to moderate shade, depending on other factors like temperature and humidity. Once the plugs begin active growth, gradually back off on irrigation until the turf has filled in. Adding extra seed to an area will not help it fill in faster. You will need approximately 1 bushel of sprigs per 100 square feet of lawn area. Hot, humid, sunny areas of the lawn can also cause disease, although it is easier to control. These are small black bugs that live in the soil and eat the roots and leaves of your grass. Apply, or re apply pre-emergent after aeration, because aeration destroys the pre-emergent protection. Earlier planting dates will give the turf more time to fill in and create a deeper root system before winter. Water 4-5 times per day, like you would with seeds, and keep watering until you see active growth. In some climates, you may need to irrigate occasionally over the winter during extended dry periods. Zoysia is able to resist most pests and diseases if it is maintained properly. 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. The pesticides used to treat grubs can be strong, so wear thick-soled shoes and gloves during application, and keep kids and pets off the lawn. While zoysia can tolerate a few grubs per square foot, an infestation can kill large patches of turf before you notice too much damage. Damage from hunting billbugs looks like a hybrid between grub damage and drought damage. Bermuda does not tolerate shade, so taller mowing heights may reduce the spread, but it’s not very effective. Dense, clay soil can hold on to large amounts of nitrogen due to the fact that water cannot drain freely into the subsoil. Examples provided of tested products are actual products owned, tested, and used regularly by the author. Rye grass can’t survive the heat of summer and will be overtaken by your Zoysia. It is such a prolific nuisance that there are multiple sprays and chemical control... 5 Tips for Creating Beautiful, Low-Maintenance Flower Beds. Zeon has moderate shade and drought tolerance. Aeration allows oxygen into the soil, which helps encourage root growth and water infiltration. Irrigate after topdressing to help the lawn begin to recover from dethatching and aerating. The basic fact about zoysia grass is that, unless it is grown in the right climate, it will cause more headaches than not. Zoysia is a dense grass, and under the right conditions, it can choke out most weeds and other grasses without too much chemical intervention. Set the tiller as deep as possible and till up the lawn. Learn more about establishing zoysia in clay soil. If … Diamond is one of the few turf grasses suitable for putting greens. You may need to wait until later in the year before you move on to step 2. Chemical-free: The fall before planting, spread tarps or solid plastic film across your lawn and anchor them with stakes. The dense growth pattern of zoysia grass, combined with mowing, will keep weeds at bay. Zoysia is one of the grasses that are most susceptible to rust. The more you mow, the more you will trigger the roots to develop deep, dense root systems that will help them survive the winter. You can do this by spraying a non-selective herbicide (not a pre-emergent) over your lawn at two-week increments after the lawn breaks dormancy. Side By Side Comparison, Best Fertilizer For A Clay Soil Lawn: Why Ingredients Matter, Learn more about establishing zoysia in clay soil. With zoysia, you want to rent a core aerator and put it on an aggressive setting. Under most conditions, zoysia can out-compete St. Augustine without too much intervention. 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. I’d say go easy on the fertilizer, if ever. Before you choose the cultivar for your lawn, research the varieties and cultivars that do well in your area. To control billbug populations, spray a preventative insecticide during the summer when eggs are hatching. Keep your zoysia lawn at least 1 ½ inches tall and remove no … Bury 2/3 of each sprig with a few inches of soil. Be sure to mark gas lines, water lines, and electrical lines with spray paint or flags. Leaf spot is difficult to identify without close inspection of an infected leaf. Zoysia prefers hot summers and mild winters. With valid and proven claims of chinch bug-resistance and drought tolerance, even strict homeowner's associations like Haile If you feel that chinch bugs may be contributing to your brown lawn, schedule a meeting with our lawn pest control technician, Joe. Bermuda grass is the most difficult weed to remove from a zoysia lawn. The best way to prevent broadleaf weeds is to encourage zoysia to fill in bare patches of soil through consistent maintenance and soil building. Moist, shady environments, whether hot or cool, will result in diseases for zoysia lawns. Centipede grass stays green longer during periods of drought, so you can spray it without harming the zoysia. Spread a ¼”-½” layer of compost over the lawn and rake it into the holes left by the aerator. Put sprigs in a wheelbarrow or bucket and walk across the lawn planting sprigs every 6”. Zoysia grass is known for its ability to stand up to heat, drought, heavy foot traffic and a variety of other challenges. If brown patch is a problem each spring, you may need to spray a preventative fungicide to keep spores under control. Z. matrella can tolerate light frost, although it may suffer after a few hard frosts. WATERING. If this is the route you wish to take, then your conversion to a cool-season lawn can begin now until mid-July. Till when the soil is moist; not dry and not muddy. It is also able to hold on to more moisture, which can help prevent drought stress and encourage nutrient uptake. Sprigs will go from green to brown in the first few weeks; this is normal. Spray fescue during the spring before zoysia comes out of dormancy. Meyer Zoysia is a medium textured variety. Reel mowers are the only way to cut extremely low lawns. St. Augustine vs. Zoysia: Which One Is Right For Your Lawn? 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. 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. Kill old turf/weeds. Once the lawn begins active growth, slowly back off on irrigating until you are able to mow. Broadleaf weeds are any weed that’s not a grass. 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. Billbugs feed on the crown and stolons of the grass, which are responsible for above-ground growth. Fescue thrives with cold winters, and this combined with severe winter kill may give fescue a strong foothold in your zoysia lawn. While zoysia is often advertised as a low-maintenance turf, this is only true under favorable growing conditions. To mark gas lines, water lines, water lines, water,. 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Compost pile under most growing conditions ever cut more than 1/3 of the infected grass as possible bermuda... Is a very invasive grass or at least 6 weeks 5 tips for Creating beautiful dense... Returns and the humidity drops much damage planting can also use layers of cardboard or other solid materials that block! ’ re not in danger of frost soil is still bare and moist treatment, try diatomaceous... Remove from the lawn and you want to rent a core aerator and put it on an as-needed basis root!