Japanese Lawngrass (zoysia grass)
Scientific Name: Zoysia japonica
Common name: Japanese Lawngrass (zoysiagrass)
Zoysia grass is native to Southeast Asia. It is a warm season grass that is cold tolerant. It does well in southern or transition zones. Southern Utah is within the transition zone, but with climate change, more of Utah will be in the transition zone.
Zoysiagrass is perennial and grows by both stolon and rhizome (making it repair from damage easily). It requires full sun and does not like shade. It’s very water efficient. For optimal growth, it needs to be watered to 60% of evapotranspiration (ET), while Kentucky bluegrass needs to be watered to 80%. Also, the ET for Zoysia grass is lower than Kentucky bluegrass. If you want the grass to look green in the winter you can plant annual rye when zoysia grass is dormant and it will do well through the winter, then die off when it gets hot. 1 lb of nitrogen per 1000 sq ft. each month is sufficient for zoysiagrass. Overseeding in the winter can be helpful, as well as sprigging. Dethatching Zoysiagrass during the prime growing time is also recommended. Zoysiagrass got its name from the botanist Karl von Zois.