Preparing for Winter Dormancy


posted on November 7th, 2011 by admin

With the cold snap imminent, some of you are going to notice your grass turning a tawny-brown color. No need to worry, this is quite natural. Zoysia, like trees, goes dormant after the first hard frost — But instead of losing leaves, its green color fades.

Zoysia’s dormancy is a safeguard against colder temperatures, up to -30˚ F in fact! Just like trees that regrow their leaves in the spring, Zoysia will come back lush each spring once the soil reaches 50˚F. This behavior is what let’s Zoysia thrive in even the hottest summers.

Most grasses go dormant at some point in the year. “Cool season” grasses do the opposite, they go dormant and brown in the warm summer months. Zoysia is categorized as a “warm season” grass, so it goes dormant in the winter and is green in the summer, just when you want your grass nice and lush.

Depending on where you live, your Zoysia may not go dormant at all. If your winters are mild, your lawn will be green year round. Either way, come spring, your lawn will be back to its lush, beautiful green in no time!

 

Winter Preparation


posted on October 4th, 2011 by admin

With winter coming, it is time to get your lawn ready for the cold. Zoysia grass is a “warm season” grass and goes dormant in the cold months, turning a tawny-brown color after the first hard frost. This is a good thing! Dormancy helps the grass survive the cold months while still coming back as the temperature warms. It is a very normal process and the grass will be back in no time without any work needed from you.

To get your grass ready, mow it at about 1.5 to 2.5 inches during the fall. Make sure to collect any of the grass clippings so that you don’t get dead spots come spring. You don’t need to fertilize your grass at this time. Fertilizing is better done in the summer months when the grass is growing.

Overall Zoysia grass is strong and fairly self-sufficient. Keeping your Zoysia strong during summer will let it go into winter strong. Dethatch to help water and nutrients reach the soil is fine at this time of year, even better done in the Spring. One of the very best thing you can do for your lawn is aerating it. Fall is a great time to do this. Then just sit back and enjoy how easy Zoysia is while you wait for Spring.

 

Fall Planting


posted on September 8th, 2011 by admin

Summer is finally winding down, but that doesn’t mean your Zoysia grass is done for the season. On the contrary, you have a few great months left to enjoy that lush green. It also means you have to make sure to keep taking care of your Zoysia while you wait for winter preparations.

It is best to fertilize your Zoysia during the spring and summer, when the grass is at its peak growing. After August, fertilizing may interfere with Zoysia’s natural preparation for the winter dormant period.

Zoysia’s stem tissue results in a buildup of thatch, a layer of partially decomposed plant material that builds up on the soil — Removing it help water and nutrients get to the surface of the soil. Aerating can also help prevent the buildup of thatch and aid in getting nutrients to the roots of the Zoysia.  This is one of the best things you can do for any lawn.

When mowing your Zoysia during the summer, it should be cut low to remove dead leaf tissue. In the fall, you should raise your mower height to about an inch. You can also begin to water your grass less or even not at all. Proper mowing and thatch control can help you build a very drought tolerant lawn.

Make sure you’re prepared to care for your Zoysia lawn during the fall and winter seasons; don’t forget to stop by our Taneytown, MD store before it closes for the season on September 23rd.

 

Zoysia: Not Just for Your Yard


posted on July 25th, 2011 by Julie

Zoysia is a tough, hardy grass that thrives in a variety of conditions and environments. Its adaptability makes it ideal for home lawns because it requires little maintenance on the homeowner’s part and can withstand some extreme conditions. But did you know that Zoysia is also favored by golf course superintendents and caretakers of public lawns as well?

Below is just a brief list of some of the more interesting places sporting Zoysia lawns:

Maryland Soccer Complex – Germantown, MD

Zoysia’s lush, carpet-like surface makes an ideal playing field for sports like soccer and football. It stands up to high traffic and damage and still requires less maintenance than other grasses. Zoysia grass is also ideal for playing surfaces because it doesn’t require the use of poisonous chemicals to prevent weeds and other intrusions – Making it a safe play surface for children and adults alike.

The National Mall and Reagan National Airport – Washington, DC

Zoysia grass is an ideal choice for the National Mall because it can withstand the damage caused by heavy foot traffic. It also thrives in heat and stays healthy with little maintenance. Groundskeepers at Reagan National Airport prefer Zoysia grass around terminal buildings because it grows at a slower pace than other grasses and stays lush and green with little watering.

Southwind Golf and Country Club – Memphis, TN

The home of the FedEx St. Jude Classic, TPC Southwind uses Zoysia grass on many of its fairways. Amateur and professional golfers alike prefer playing on Zoysia fairways because the ball tees up nicely – Making shots easier. Course superintendents love that it can withstand extreme conditions with very little maintenance and still stay beautiful.

Aside from these places, you’ll also find lush Zoysia lawns on the grounds of the FDA building and the US Court House in Washington DC and the Naval Academy Golf Course in Annapolis, MD. Zoysia grass as also been used as the playing surface of the Daejeon stadium in Seoul, South Korea during the 2002 World Cup.

Zoysia: The Sustainable Lawn


posted on June 17th, 2011 by John

Zoysia Grass Water Drop“Greening” your home doesn’t have to stop with a switch to non-chemical household cleaning products or energy-saving practices.  In fact, you can take your green efforts all the way outside with an environmentally friendly Zoysia lawn.

In terms of sustainability, Zoysia is a top performer with very low maintenance – This helps reduce your carbon footprint through limited fossil fuel and water use as well as fewer fertilizer applications.  Zoysia grass also has the ability to filter carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, cleaning the air we breathe. Not to mention, Zoysia’s ability to absorb heat and withstand high temperatures, which limit the movement of pesticides and reduce erosion. So, you can boost your family’s “greening” efforts.

Now “going green” doesn’t just refer to the color of your grass. Instead, it refers to making a positive impact on the earth and the environment with a little help from your Zoysia lawn.

The Dangers of Pesticides


posted on May 12th, 2011 by Steve Schug

Lawns come in all shapes and sizes. Unfortunately, so do the weeds, insects and unwanted grasses that can pop up from time to time.  Luckily, the thick growth pattern of a Zoysia lawn can help prevent them from making a home in your yard.

If you do find yourself with intruders, it’s natural to want to get rid of them. However, it’s extremely important to be mindful of the method in which you choose to do this. It is a widely known fact that the chemicals in many pesticides can be harmful to your family and pets – but these chemicals also have the potential to damage your lawn as well. In fact, pesticides have the potential to harm our entire eco-system.

The Environmental Protection Agency has declared many pesticides carcinogenic, and these chemicals have the potential to cause serious health complications in adults and children. Pesticides also pollute rivers and water supplies and pose a significant danger to wildlife. In recent years, though, there have been advancements in alternatives to traditional pesticides (often organic, non-chemical formulas) that can help you rid your yard of a variety of insects and weeds while protecting you, your family and our delicate eco-system.

With a Zoysia lawn, you can avoid pesticides or non-chemical weed killers all together since Zoysia tends to naturally resist many unwanted intruders – protecting you and your family from the dangers of pesticides in your own backyard.

Managing Your pH


posted on April 27th, 2011 by Steve Schug

As we mentioned earlier this month, understanding the type of soil you’re working with when planting your Zoysia lawn is the first step in achieving the best possible results. Once you’ve determined soil type, it’s time to test its pH level to help you figure out what, if any, extra nutrients your soil may require.

While your Zoysia lawn can grow in a variety of soil types and pH levels, ideally your soil’s pH should be between 6 and 7. Since the pH of your soil determines how well plants absorb nutrients, it’s important to test it prior to planting – You can do this easily with a handheld pH meter.

If your soil tests below the ideal level, it is considered acidic. Acidic soil contains more sulfur and aluminum sulfate than neutral soils – And while acidic soil does help plants absorb iron more easily, it can also hinder the ability to absorb molybdenum.

Soil that tests above the ideal lever is considered alkaline. Alkaline soils tend to contain an abundance of lime or wood ash and help plants absorb potassium. However, alkaline soils can cause difficulty in the absorption of manganese.

Overall, most plants, including your Zoysia lawn, will thrive in a neutral soil. You can alter the level of your soil’s pH by adding granulated lime to raise the pH level or adding small quantities of sulfur to lower the pH level.

 

Your Zoysia Lawn and Pre-emergents


posted on April 14th, 2011 by John

While Zoysia grass is incredibly resilient and can choke out many weeds on its own, it is not entirely immune to the occasional weed.

From time to time, you may be faced with a weed – Not to worry!  Many weeds can be taken care of quickly with a product like Weed Be Gone or a water-soluble component.  However, if you find yourself faced with weeds from the crabgrass family, you’ll need to use a pre-emergence product that will kill the seeds before they have a chance to germinate.  It is extremely important that you do not combine a pre-emergent with a weed and feed or fertilizer or use a product that contains both – This combination of chemicals could be detrimental to the health and beauty of your lawn.

For the best results, pre-emergence products should be used in early spring and again in the fall.

To prevent weeds and keep your Zoysia lawn healthy, mow at a higher height, water less and aerate your lawn annually.  To retard weed growth, mow your lawn more frequently during the spring months.

The Types of Soil and Your Zoysia Lawn


posted on April 14th, 2011 by Steve Schug

The soil underneath of your Zoysia lawn supplies your grass with nutrients and water as it grows.  While Zoysia grows well in a variety of soils, in order to be sure your lawn will grow successfully and look its best, it’s important to know the type of soil you’re working with.

Sand

Sandy soil is made of larger rock particles that fit loosely together.  While this type of soil does not lend itself to remaining moist, its roomy airspaces allow Zoysia’s roots to penetrate and provide quicker root development.  Prior to planting, though, this type of soil might require some alteration in the form of manure or compost if it is more sand than soil.

Silt

Silt-based soils are made of medium-sized particles that can often only be seen with the aide of a microscope.  These types of soils shed water quickly, but feel slick to the touch when they are wet.  They tend to be rich in nutrients and a great growing environment.

Clay

Clay-like soils are made of tiny particle that stick tightly together.  These soils hold water and nutrients well, but they are also susceptible to “winter heaving” which can be harmful to perennial plants.  It is best to mix your clay soil well with an organic matter to reduce its compaction, making it easier for roots to grow.

Organic Matter

Organic matter is made of organic materials like compost, decomposed manure and shredded leaves.  When applied to sandy or clay-like soils, it helps to maintain ideal moisture levels and creates airspace to help roots grow as needed.  By adding organic matter in moderation, you alter your existing soil and give your Zoysia lawn the best chance to grow and thrive.

Remember, a big part of keeping your lawn healthy and beautiful is knowing what’s underneath it.  Knowing what type of soil you have prior to planting your Zoysia lawn will help it to grow and thrive for years to come.

How Many Plugs Should You Buy?


posted on March 31st, 2011 by Julie

If you’re considering purchasing Zoysia plugs for your lawn, there are a few things you need to consider when placing your order and planting the plugs upon delivery.

Zoysia plugs require less maintenance, produce a heartier lawn and can be planted throughout the growing season.  That said it is important to consider the size of the area you’re interested in planting and how quickly you’d like the area to fill in.  Typically, we suggest planting one plug per square foot.  If you’d like to reduce the amount of time your Zoysia lawn takes to fill in, we recommend planting two plugs per square foot — one plug every six inches.

Need help figuring out square footage and how many plugs to buy for your space?  Try this easy to use Plug Calculator.  Simply divide your lawn into sections, enter the length and width of each and how far apart you’d like to plant your plugs – The calculator will quickly tell you how many plugs you’ll need.