Image by gillian van niekerk
By Heather Rhoades
A zoysia grass lawn is frequently touted as the cure all for the homeowner’s lawn cares. The basic facts about zoysia grass is that unless it is grown in the right climate, it will cause more headaches than not.
Zoysia grass problems
Invasive – Zoysia grass is a very invasive grass. The reason you can plant plugs and not have to seed the lawn is because zoysia grass will crowd out all other species in the lawn. Then when it has taken over your lawn it will start in on your flower beds and your neighbor’s lawn.
Temperamental color – Another one of the zoysia grass problems is that unless you live in a consistently warm climate, the color of your lawn can go rapidly from green to brown at the first sign of cool weather. This can leave your lawn looking unsightly for a good part of the year.
Slow growing – While this is touted as a good feature because it means that you don’t need to mow as much, it also means that you zoysia grass lawn will have a harder time recovering from damage and heavy wear.
Zoysia Patch or Rhizoctonia Large Patch – Zoysia is prone to zoysia patch disease, which can kill the grass and give it a rust color as it is dying.
Thatch - Another one of the facts about zoysia grass is that is prone to thatch problems. While you will have less mowing, you will have to do more thatch control, which is significantly more labor intensive.
Difficult to remove – One of the most frustrating zoysia grass problems is the fact that it is near impossible to remove once it become established. If you decide to plant zoysia grass, you are making the decision to grow it for life.
In warm weather, zoysia grass problems are fewer and the benefits are greater and this grass is worth looking at. But if you are in a cooler climate, planting a zoysia grass lawn is just asking for trouble.