Zoysia Care Instructions
MOST IMPORTANT FIRST!
1. Never use any other fertilizer than 9-0-24 slow release here in Central Florida.
2. Never allow the Zoysia to get longer than 3” and cut regularly at 2 ¼”-2 ½” or down to 1” but I prefer 2 ¼” b/c it is softer. Longer heights will create thatch and disease.
3. Zoysia is opposite St. Augustine! Shorter is better, less nitrogen is better and LESS WATER-is better as well!!!
New Install fertilization program-Do not fertilize with anything until you can no longer see the individual pieces. Then use 9-0-24. This is a general rule of thumb since we install Zoysia year round and growth rates differ. 20-30 days in the summer / up to 90-100 days in the winter. A light application of fungicide immediately after install is a nice insurance policy- #2 rate on most spreaders.
Established Lawn Fertilization Program
9-0-24 slow release is ideal year round (every 2 months April-December and 1 very light application before the grass is dormant in the winter-depends on the weather!) Do not fertilize the Zoysia if it is brown or the temperature has dropped below 45 degress! -you will induce fungus and waste money. This is the ONLY fertilizer I recommend or guarantee will work perfectly. It is only available at John Deer Landscapes here locally. I use turf paint if the Zoysia goes dormant in my yard and you would never know
Fungicide “Heritage”-made by Syngenta used every 3-5 months.
Most fungus occurs in the winter due to over fertilization, during August and September -the most hot humid months or after several days of heavy rain. Zoysia blades will turn RED when the grass has too much water which is the #1 warning sign of fungus.
Insecticide “0-0-7 Alectus” every 4 months
Pre-Em 0-0-8 Pre emergent to be applied every 3-4 months. Helps prevent weeds.
Granular fertilizers etc to be applied with a hand spreader or chest spreader-(I don’t like push spreaders I can get more even coverage with a hand or chest spreader.) They sell the spreaders and pump sprayers at John Deere Landscapes-see below
Liquid Selective Herbicides for Empire Zoysia
Celcius for broadleaf weeds 2 tablespoons per gallon
Quinchlorac for sedge and grassey weeds-Crabgrass, Torpedograss, some broadleafs AND St. Augustine in your neighbors yards encroaching into yours. .5-6 ounces per gallon with .1-.2 oz of spreader sticker. My secret weapon!
Fusilade to control bermuda in Zoysia-.5 oz per gallon with .1-2 oz of Spreader Sticker (This will turn your Zoysia mostly brown for 2 months where it is sprayed-however it DOES kill Bermuda in Zoysia and the Zoysia will eventually recover. Use sparingly to not turn your whole yard brown. This is a last resort to killing off everything with Glyphosate.
To be applied with a 1-5 gallon pump sprayers.
Water immediately after application of the granular. DO NOT water after application of the liquid herbicides for at least 1 day.-(it washes them off before they can work/kill the weeds) Don’t do them on the same day… Spray for weeds 2 days prior to your lawn being cut so the weeds have more surface area to absorb the chemicals and the mower doesn’t cut the chemicals off.
Fusilade to control bermuda in Zoysia-.5 oz per gallon with .1-2 oz of Spreader Sticker
NEW ZOYSIA INSTALL WATERING INSTRUCTIONS
Watering of newly installed Zoysia has many variables involved. The simplest way to explain watering schedules is use common sense and water as needed. Most systems we encounter NEED MODIFYING FOR ZOYSIA! Since Zoysia needs less water we recommend Hunter MP Rotator tips for pop up sprayers and smaller nozzels on rotary heads or 35′ Hunter MP Rotator tips for larger areas. Spend the extra couple hundred dollars to make sure your irrigation system has been evaluated by a Zoysia irrigation expert-(not just any irrigation company ask us.) The watering schedule variables include amount of shade or sun, sprinkler type, system layout (overlapping heads, rotary heads running 360 degrees etc), soil type (sandy soils need much more water initially)
Basically in the warmer months (85 degrees +)
-Water the first 4-5 days 1-2 times per day depending on soil type. Let it dry out for one day (help eliminate fungus.)
-Water the next 3-4 days then skip a day for the next 2 weeks.
-Water 3 days per week for the next 2-3 weeks.
-Obviously if the Zoysia is seriously wilted or dry add in a watering!
These watering schedules are not an exact plan for your lawn. Please ask us for a specific watering plan for your lawn!
NEW ZOYSIA MOWING INSTRUCTIONS
Mow your new Zoysia after 10-14 days in the summer and 3-4 weeks in the winter. Depending on the height of the new Zoysia that was installed it will determine your mower deck height. Basically you do not want to cut more than 1/3 off of the total blade length. 2’-2 ½” should be a general rule. If the grass is 3” or more you will need to work it back down to 2.” You want to get it lower than your normal cutting height 2 ½” so that it will fill back in and be thick and lush-kind of like pruning a shrub back. I recommend bagging the clippings for the first 2-5 mowings. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO “SCALP” THE GRASS AFTER 3-4 WEEKS!!! You can mow Zoysia down to ¼” and it will come right back if that gives you more piece of mind to scalp it. SCALPING THE HIGH SPOTS WILL MAKE THE GRASS EVEN ITSELF OUT! Getting a thick lush yard forever after 6 months is worth the brown patches from scalping. Make sure you water immediately after any scalping!
ESTABLISHED ZOYSIA WATERING INSTUCTIONS
USE COMMON SENSE if the grass looks dry (wilted or thin blades) it wants water. I manually water my personal Zoysia lawn using the manual setting on my timer-I leave it off until the grass looks like it needs water. IF IT RAINS MORE THAN ½” DON’T WATER THAT DAY! You may be able to get away with watering 1 day per week if you have the right soil type. MORE WATER LESS OFTEN ¾” of water per watering as needed. Zoysia loves to dry out and it helps eliminate fungus issues. Drier is better! Zoysia will turn solid brown after 3 weeks of no water and really tell you it wants water. Have no fear as it will green up in 1-2 weeks after watering has started again. It can go up to 6 weeks without water in the summer depending on soil type-(I wouldn’t try it.) Now knowing that Zoysia can go easily 3-4 weeks with no water and be fine hopefully you are less worried about watering less often. Generally speaking water 2 times a week in the summer and 1 time per week in the winter if you are not manually watering and just want to set the timer and forget about it. Another benefit to watering less often is that the fertilizers and fungicides last longer-they don’t get washed / flushed out as fast as they will in St. Augustines.