Zoysia Grass Pros and Cons

Last Updated on August 24, 2021 by Grow with Bovees

Zoysia grass is a beautiful-looking grass that gives you a dense lawn with a lovely light green color.

The grass originates from Asia but has been in the United States since around 1895.

It has captured the hearts of American homeowners since then, giving them a great option for their lawn.

This grass is easy to care for and grow, even if it takes its time. It grows well in all climates and conditions, giving homeowners in the midsection of the country a grass that suits their hot and humid climate.

There are many benefits to having Zoysia grass grow on your lawn, but there are also some challenges. In this guide, we’ll let you know both the pros and cons of Zoysia grass, so you know what you’re working with.

In this article, we will cover;

  • About Zoysia Grass.
  • Zoysia Grass Varieties.
  • The Pros of Zoysia Grass.
  • Cons of Zoysia Grass.
  • Conclusion.

About Zoysia Grass

Zoysia grass has become a favorite for many homeowners in the United States as it’s easy to care for and can withstand quite heavy traffic.

It is also used in parks and on golf courses as it has a stunning green color in the summer, and it is dense, which gives it a more healthy look than some other grass types.

As the grass is so thick, it is difficult for weeds to come through, which is a great result. It’s also easy to care for and doesn’t require much time and energy when looking after it. This means that you can spend more time sitting back and enjoying your lawn rather than working on it.

Zoysia Grass Varieties

There are many varieties of Zoysia grass, each with its own benefits and challenges.

Horticulturalists developed a variation, Zoysia ‘Meyer, in the 1950s, and it has an increased tolerance to colder conditions. You can grow Zoysia ‘Zenith’ and ‘Compadre’ from seed; You should grow all other variations of Zoysia grass using sods or sod plugs.

Zoysia grass is quite hard and sharp, giving it the durability it needs in areas with high traffic. However, ‘Emerald’ Zoysia has been developed to produce a softer lawn with thinner blades.

This grass type only needs to be mowed twice per month, so it is ideal for those with very little time on their hands.

The Pros and Cons of Zoysia Grass

Zoysia grass has many pros, which is a good thing. However, there are also some cons that you should be aware of before choosing this grass for your home lawn.

We’ll let you know about each of them which will then help you to decide if it’s the correct type of grass for you.

Pros of Zoysia Grass

Zoysia Grass in Hot Dry Conditions — Warm Season Grass

Zoysia grasses are warm-season grasses that thrive in moderate temperatures. The best temperature for your Zoysia grass to grow well is 75 degrees Fahrenheit and above.

This makes it a perfect warm-season grass for those gardens in the transitional zone. Here the climate is too cold for other warm-season grasses, such as Bermuda grass and St. Augustine grass.

You will find that the climate here is also way too hot for cold season grasses, such as Kentucky bluegrass and Tall Fescue.

Zoysia grass can tolerate heat and also withstand cold snaps without any issues. You will find that if the temperature goes below 55 degrees Fahrenheit for more than a few days, the color of your Zoysia grass will change.

The grass will lose its green color and start to turn brown.This doesn’t mean that the grass is dead, just that it’s entering a dormancy phase.

Zoysia Grass is Tough

The Zoysia grass is quite tough and can withstand moderate levels of traffic. This will help if you have pets running up and down your lawn every day or kids playing on the lawn. The grass will recover well from this kind of activity.

Pets and kids can take their toll on a lawn, but as long as you water your Zoysia grass adequately, it should manage fine with the little ones running around. You wouldn’t want to spoil their fun in the garden.

Zoysia Grass is Easy to Maintain

Zoysia grass is fairly low maintenance and is easy to look after. It’s a durable lawn that’s resistant to lots of weeds, diseases and insects.

For the best growing conditions, it needs around five hours of direct sunlight every day. Any shaded areas will grow at a slightly slower pace than those that are in the sun.

The grass doesn’t need much water and does well on just over one inch of water each week. You will be able to know if your grass needs more water—you’ll start to see a brown patch here and there. This will change back to green when given water.

Your Zoysia grass thrives when given some fertilizer in early spring, and this should include nitrogen and potassium to get the best out of your Zoysia lawn.

Be careful not to over-fertilize your lawn as this will create thatch, which will give you an extra job of dethatching. You should check the pH level with a lawn soil test kit around this time also. The perfect pH level for Zoysia grass would be slightly acidic, between six and seven.

Zoysia Grass Growth

Zoysia grass doesn’t grow quickly, but it does grow very dense with deep roots when given lots of sunshine. The grass is easy to mow and can be cut quite short without scalping it. It’s best to mow it regularly, keeping it at a medium height at all times.

You should bear in mind that the blades of grass are thick and sharp, and your mower blades will need sharpening often when cutting Zoysia grass.

Cons of Zoysia Grass

Zoysia Grass Color Change

Zoysia grass is a beautiful green color when at the optimal temperature. However, when the temperature dips below 55 degrees Fahrenheit, the grass will become dormant. When this happens, you will start to see a color change as the grass goes from green to brown.

Some homeowners naturally don’t like this about the grass as it makes your Zoysia lawn look unhealthy. This can last for a few months during the winter period.

Diseases

Zoysia Patch Disease

Patch disease is the most common disease in zoysia, and turns the blades of grass rust-colored as they die.

Keeping the grass healthy will help prevent this, and fungicides will help control the disease if it does develop.

Leaf Spot 

Leaf spot develops when there are hot days and cool nights. Overly dry circumstances and a lack of appropriate fertilizer are the most common causes.

Plant Zoysia Grass — Turf Grass

When creating your Zoysia lawn, most people use sods or sod plugs, which are quicker to establish. You can use Zoysia grass seed to grow your grass; however, this doesn’t grow quickly and can take up to two seasons to fully take hold and give you a dense turf.

Start to plant your lawn in early spring, at the start of the season for growing Zoysia grass. Using seeds will mean that you’ll have the whole summer without your lawn, so you need to be patient.

A Stubborn Customer

Lastly, a word of warning; Zoysia grass is tough, if not impossible, to remove once established, so you need to be sure that it is the right choice for your lawn before you plant it.

Conclusion

Zoysia grass is an excellent choice for your lawn, especially if you’re in the midsection of the country, as not all grasses will grow here. Once the lawn is established, it will grow thick and lush, giving you great-looking Zoysia lawns during the spring and summer months.

It’s great for family gardens where you may have dogs running around or kids playing every day. It can withstand these challenging conditions and will recover well with a little watering.

However, bear in mind that the lawn won’t grow quickly, and it could be that you don’t have the lovely lush lawn that you desire for at least a couple of seasons.

You also need to consider that during the dormant seasons, it will become a crispy brown lawn that’s not the most attractive, which can put off many gardeners.

We hope that you’ve enjoyed learning the pros and cons of Zoysia grass and that you now know what to look for if choosing this grass for your lawn.