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Plants that fill a similar niche:
Cynodon Tifway Bermuda Lawn
Eremochloa ophiuroides Summer form
Stenotaphrum secundatum Spike with flowers (Guilford County, NC)-Mid Summer
Zoysia spp. has some common insect problems:
White Grubs in Turf
Wireworms in Turf
Green June Beetles in Turfgrass
Zoysia spp. has some common disease problems:
Large Patch in Turf
Zoysia spp. has some other problems:
Zoysiagrass Lawn Maintenance Calendar
Zoysiagrass

Mascarenegrass Zoysia spp.

Previously known as:

  • Zoysia pacifica
  • Zoysia tenuifolia
Phonetic Spelling
ZOY-zhə
Description

Zoysiagrass is a warm-season turf grass in the grass family (Poaceae) and is native to Japan and Korea. There are two species that are used for lawns, Z. japonica and Z. matrella, but other species are also grown. Zoysiagrasses are also used for golf courses and erosion control. They are considered high-maintenance grasses. The genus name, Zoysia, references Karl von Zoys, an 18th-century Austrian botanist.

Zoysia japonica is from Asia and is commonly known as Japanese or Korean lawngrass. It has medium-coarse leaves that are light green in color. Seeds are available for this one, but sod or plugs are usually used to establish a lawn.

Zoysia matrella is from the Philippines and is commonly known as Manilagrass. It has a finer texture, is slower growing and less cold-hardy than the other Zoysiagrasses. 

Zoysia tenuifolia is a name that appears in the turfgrass literature and in commerce, but it is now treated as a synonym of Zoysia matrella var. matrella. It forms small clumps with a puffy appearance. Due to its slow growth and appearance, it is not used as turf grass but more as an ornamental. 

Zoysia matrella var. pacifica (syn. Zoysia pacifica) has the common name of Mascarenegrass or Korean velvetgrass. Due to slow growth and appearance, it is more often used as an ornamental than as a turfgrass.

Zoysiagrasses form a very dense turf that tolerates wear and spreads by stolons and rhizomes. It grows in full sun to light shade and is very drought tolerant once established. It requires less frequent mowing due to its slow rate of growth. Once established, it requires little irrigation to survive in North Carolina. Because it is a warm-season grass, Zoysia grasses go dormant in the winter and assume a light brown appearance. It should be mowed to a height of 1 to 1 1/2 inches.

Most of the Zoysiagrasses need to be established by plugs or sod. There are a few cultivars can be started by seed, but availability is limited. Those that can be seeded include 'Compadre' and ‘Zenith'; however, they can be difficult to establish.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: No significant problems. Fungal diseases and white grubs can occur.

The Clemson Cooperative Extension Home and Garden Information Center has a factsheet on common southern lawn diseases.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Cavalier'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Compadre'
    Coase texture; may be grown from seed.
  • 'Crowne'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Diamond'
    Fine texture.
  • 'El Toro'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Emerald'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Empire'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Innovation'
  • 'Jamur'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Leisure Time'
  • 'Lobo'
  • 'Meyer'
    medium texture.
  • 'Palisades'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Zenith'
    Coase texture; may be grown from seed.
  • 'Zeon'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Zorro'
    Fine texture.
'Cavalier', 'Compadre', 'Crowne', 'Diamond', 'El Toro', 'Emerald', 'Empire', 'Innovation', 'Jamur', 'Leisure Time', 'Lobo', 'Meyer', 'Palisades', 'Zenith', 'Zeon', 'Zorro'
Tags:
#high maintenance#warm-season grass#turfgrass#lawn#full sun#light shade#golf course
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Cavalier'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Compadre'
    Coase texture; may be grown from seed.
  • 'Crowne'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Diamond'
    Fine texture.
  • 'El Toro'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Emerald'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Empire'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Innovation'
  • 'Jamur'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Leisure Time'
  • 'Lobo'
  • 'Meyer'
    medium texture.
  • 'Palisades'
    Coarse texture.
  • 'Zenith'
    Coase texture; may be grown from seed.
  • 'Zeon'
    Fine texture.
  • 'Zorro'
    Fine texture.
'Cavalier', 'Compadre', 'Crowne', 'Diamond', 'El Toro', 'Emerald', 'Empire', 'Innovation', 'Jamur', 'Leisure Time', 'Lobo', 'Meyer', 'Palisades', 'Zenith', 'Zeon', 'Zorro'
Tags:
#high maintenance#warm-season grass#turfgrass#lawn#full sun#light shade#golf course
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Zoysia
    Family:
    Poaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Asia
    Distribution:
    Naturalized in various states in the United States, including North Carolina, Central and South America, and African Gold Coast.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Turfgrass
    Habit/Form:
    Creeping
    Horizontal
    Multi-stemmed
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    High
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Caryopsis
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    seedhead a spikelet, with seeds alternating along the head
  • Flowers:
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spike
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    The minute flowers are borne in dense cylindrical inflorescences.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Sheath
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Light green linear leaf with a sharp point and hairs at the sheath collar and ligule. Width and texture vary according to the cultivar.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Branching green stems that root at the nodes
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Erosion
    Foot Traffic
    Heat
    Humidity