How to Plant Zenith Zoysia Grass Seedzenith_zoysia_back_yard_-three_weeks_after_seeding

When to Seed: Warm soil, 70 degrees F, (29 degrees C) is necessary for satisfactory germination, but it is important that seeding be done early enough in the year to get the planting well enough established to endure the first winter. The optimum seeding time in the mid-South is late spring. June is good in any adapted area; July 4 should be the latest seeding date north of the Mason-Dixon Line, while early August should be the latest in the Upper South.

Seedbed Preparation: Till and level the lawn area, removing sticks, stones and debris. Slope away from house and other buildings. Before tilling, lime according to a soil test to bring soil to pH of 6.0 to 6.5 (if no soil test is available, use 50 lbs. dolomite limestone per 1,000 sq. ft.). Incorporate into soil 15 lbs. per 1,000 sq. ft. of a complete fertilizer such as 10-10-10 or 8-8-8.

Seeding: Using a drop-type or Cyclone type spreader, uniformly broadcast on a freshly prepared seedbed, one-pound Zenith Zoysia seed per 1,000 sq. ft. (20' x 60'). To insure uniformity, spread half the seed in one direction and the remaining half across the area first seeded (half east to west - then half north to south). Rake very lightly or roll. The seed needs to be in firm contact with the soil, but require light for quick germination and therefore should have very little soil or mulch cover.

For A Quick Stand: Water as often as necessary, which may be two or three times daily, to keep the surface constantly moist for the first ten days. Thereafter, reduce watering frequency, but water enough to keep good moisture within one inch of the surface.

Fertilizer: A second application of a complete fertilizer about 30 days after the seedlings emerge will assist in maturing a turf and should be all that is needed the first year. Thereafter, a light application after spring green-up and once in late summer should suffice. On better soils, little or no regular fertilization is needed to maintain good color and density.

Mowing: Begin mowing when weed and/or Zoysia seedlings are three inches high and mow as frequently as necessary for good appearance. The best cut-height is 1.5" to 2". In full sun - 2" to 2.5". In shade sharp reel mowers produce the most professional looking turf, but an advantage of Zenith is that it will look good when mowed with a rotary cutter if the blade is kept sharp.

Insects & Diseases: All living things are subject to insects and disease problems. The most serious disease likely to damage Zenith is Brown Patch (rhizoctonia fungus). Leaf Rust is a lesser problem. Grubs and bill bugs (plus moles, crickets in the lower South) are soil borne insects, which can cause serious damage. Consult your garden store or Extension Service Technician for control recommendations.

Overseeding: Many are satisfied to park their lawn mower and enjoy Zenith's golden brown winter color. Others want it green and may wish to over-seed with ryegrass or tall fescue. To do so, cut one-half inch closer than normal in mid-September, catch the clippings and/or sweep well. Seed and water frequently. Use a heavy seeding ratio because the dense turf will prevent many of the seed from making good soil contact.

Seeding Old Lawns: Many lawn owners wish to convert to Zenith by simply overseeding. It may or may not work satisfactorily. If you wish to try cut the existing grass as closely as possible. Remove the clippings and as much thatch as practical, and expose as much soil as possible by severe de-thatching before seeding. After seeding, water frequently for at least ten consecutive days during warm weather. Using Roundup to kill the existing grass prior to seeding will help.

Herbicide
Do Not: Use any type pre-emergence weed control chemical or weed and feed fertilizer for at least 60 days before seeding Zenith. After seeding do not use any weed control chemical that is not labeled and recommended for Zoysia grasses.

Zenith Zoysia is for the person who has tired of pampering St. Augustine, Floratam, Bluegrasses and Fescues. Don't try to do too much for it because once established it doesn't need all that petting. Mow and water as needed and enjoy Zenith while your neighbor slaves!

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