Zoysia seed germination time

Seeding, Growing, Maintaining
Zoysia Grass

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Zoysia Lawn Grass Seed Is Very Popular

Zoysia Grass has been traditionally grown from vegetative or hybrid (no seed) varieties. Now that the seeded versions of Zoysia Grass are available people are planting these quality seeded Zoysia varieties in droves. The seeded varieties of Zoysia Grass, such as the improved Zenith variety, are more economical and in many ways outperform the vegetative or sod varieties.

The newest of the seeded versions is the Zenith variety.

Here is a list of helpful links To help you plant and maintain your Zoysia Grass:

  • Establishment Of Zoysia Seeds
  • Conversion of Existing Lawns To Zoysia Lawns
  • Pictorial guide to Seeding Zenith Zoysia Grass
  • Picture of a Zoysia seedling at 18 days old.>
  • How to seed & maintain Zoysia (Zenith)
  • About stored Zoysia seeds.
  • Benefits of Hydroseeding Zoysia seeds – (Bermuda Seed Instructions That Apply to Zoysia)

Below Photo of Compadre Zoysia lawn
Coverage 93 days after planting*
(Tennessee location). This is an example of possible results under ideal conditions.
Click to see a pictorial guide from START TO FINISH in 3 months.

* IMPORTANT NOTE: Results may vary due to many site conditions, planting procedures and management & weather factors. Pictured is an ideal result from a customer planting seeds in which everything was done correctly. Results may vary in your case and establishment time may very well be longer.



Zoysia seed only needs 1/8 to 1/4 inch soil coverage as light is required to hit the seed to cause germination! The seeds must have light to germinate properly and only shallow planting will allow this to occur..

One improvement leads to another in the world of grassing and any added benefit of one over the other will be tested on lawns across the world. Zenith recently joined this lineup of grasses that can be planted from seed. Preliminary results indicate this grass is a winner, both with homeowners and commercial applications.

SEED USE NOTICE: Please note that we ONLY recommend Zoysia seeds for use in bare soil areas. Planting seeds into existing grasses has a HIGH FAILURE rate. If planting into an existing lawn (grass and/or weeds) we recommend that you consider using Zoysia Grass plugs instead of seeds.

Buy Zoysia Grass Seed & Plugs Online Here!

Zoysia Grass Seeding Rates

Ideal Seeding rates are 2 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft. and 90 lbs. per acre. Heavier seeding rates produce better results especially with a slow starter like Zoysia.

Seedland recommends that you plant at the 2 LB. per 1000 square feet rate for best results.

Over Seeding During Zoysia Grass Dormancy

Over seeding with cool season grasses such as ryegrass or tall fescue can give added green coverage through the cooler season and provides for a year round green coverage. — However this is not recommended as it does present some problems unless you understand the spring transition maintenance requirements. The golden brown color offers a pleasant look without over seeding.

Reseeding Your Lawn VS Reviving Your Lawn With TLC

Reseeding to convert the current lawn variety to a newer variety may or may not work if you do not intend to kill out the existing stand. In fescue lawns there have been satisfactory results. In some lawn grasses, failure occurs from the shade problem of the existing grass. We always recommend that your first and best choice in trying to improve a lawn is to work on what you have by watering, fertilizing, and mowing properly. This will often work wonders on a problem lawn.

If You decide that a new lawn is what you want then, for best results you should eliminate all existing weeds and grasses by tilling. But many individuals do not want to go to the expense and aggravation of doing this.. You can apply a product such as Roundup® to kill the existing grass.

If you don’t want to kill the existing lawn cover, then cut the existing growth as close as possible if you are not going to kill the grass. Over seed heavily and water frequently for at least 10-20 days straight during warm weather and more frequently in really hot / dry weather. Then water every other day. Do not plant without irrigation. Fertilize lightly with a 10-10-10 (approximately 10 lbs per 1000 sq. ft.)

Reseeding to fill in bare spots or areas that for some reason or the other were damaged and killed is an excellent choice. Sprigging or plugging these areas will take the same amount of time to grow in as the plant from seed will and the same care will have to be given as to watering. The varieties from seed will mix in with the vegetative propagated ones.


Zoysia Grass Seeding Tips and Facts

Watering the soil immediately before and after seeding to hasten the germination process. Soil temps of 70 degrees+ are desirable for fastest germination. Some people find it easier to premix seeds with fine sand or finely grained starter fertilizer. (If you use fertilizer apply the mix immediately to prevent damage to the seed). This helps to assure an even coverage when well mixed and distributed with the spreader.. Seed using a drop-type or cyclone type spreader and uniformly broadcast onto a freshly prepared (moist, not dried out) seedbed.

Use at least one to two pounds of
Non-coated Pure Zenith
seed per 1,000 sq. ft.

Zoysias.com – An Informational Website From Seedland.com

The ideal planting rate with best results
is found using 2 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft.
When planting coated seeds Increase to 2-3 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft

Higher rates of seed per 1000 sq. ft. can result in faster establishment. Some experts suggest 2 lbs per 1000 sq ft. For Best results, we do not recommend less than 2 lbs per 1000 sq. ft. as this rate has given the best results in trial we have observed. Zoysia is slow to establish under normal conditions (compared to cool season grasses), so the use of higher seeding rates is HIGHLY recommended.

For best results seed at 2 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft. (3 lbs. on coated seed) — Spread half of the seed in one direction and the other half in the opposite direction for an even coverage. Rake very lightly so that the seed are planted from 1/4 to 1/2 inch in depth. Ideally you should roll the area after planting with a lawn roller. You can rent this device from many local equipment rental firms. The seed and soil need firm contact with very little soil or mulch coverage to germinate properly.

When planted by PROFESSIONAL Grassing experts… You will see planting rates recommended as low as 1 lb. per 1000 sq. ft. IF you (Homeowner or professional) can correctly prepare the site, plant at correct depths, fertilize regular, mow regular and provide irrigation to the site it is possible to obtain a successful stand with 1 lb. per 1000 sq. ft. For homeowners we generally recommend seeding at the higher rate of 2 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft, because they rarely attend to the lawn on a daily basis.


Water as often as needed which might be two or three times daily to keep the surface constantly moist (not soaking) for the first 20-30 days until you see a fair amount of the little seedlings have sprouted. Thereafter, reduce watering frequency enough to keep good moisture within one inch of the surface. Most experts say you still will need to water your Zoysia planting every other day for 5-8 weeks gradually reducing the frequency. Water is a key factor in successful establishment of Zoysia. If you can’t water daily, don’t plant Zoysia. Fertilize lightly at the end of six weeks.

SEEDING OLD LAWNS: To Convert To Zoysia Grass

Many lawn owners wish to convert to Zenith by simply over seeding and this may or may not work satisfactorily. If you wish to try this method, then proceed by cutting the existing grass as close as possible (scalping if possible). Remove all thatch and clippings and roughing the soil as much as possible to get better contact of the seed to the soil. Start in spring and seed heavily to get as much seed as possible worked into the existing lawn soil. Water frequently for at least 10-20 consecutive days during warm weather. Keep the area mowed to prevent and minimize shading of the germinating seedlings.

A better method is to apply roundup prior to seeding. Make sure you apply according to the directions on the Roundup and wait for the proper time span. Killing your existing grass and weeds will allow you to plant without tearing up the soil. Of course the ideal method is to plant on weed free, tilled and smoothed soil.

DO NOT: Use any type of pre-emergence weed control or weed and feed fertilizer for at least 60 days before or after seeding ZENITH. After seeding do not use any weed control chemical that is not labeled and recommended for ZOYSIA grasses. It is best to avoid using any weed & feed fertilizers until you have mowed your lawn areas 5-6 times.

Zenith Zoysia grass is for the person who is tired of pampering bluegrasses and fescues. Once established it does not need petting. Mow and water if necessary and enjoy a beautiful outdoor carpet of your very own.


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Zoysiagrass seed is usually planted in May or June. Keep in mind that it is typical to get only 75 percent coverage in the first year in full sun. Establishing zoysiagrass from seed in shade is fruitless.

If you plan to start a zoysia lawn from scratch, a thorough tilling is necessary to be successful. It is almost impossible to get the seeds to germinate uniformly and grow well unless the ground has been dug up and loosened. A rented tiller is the best tool. Tillers with rear mounted tines are more expensive to rent but many people find them much easier to use on hard ground.

If the seed dry out they will die. The lawn should be watered daily for at least three weeks to keep the seeds moist. After the grass has emerged, water less often but apply more water each time.

Kill all weeds by spraying the area with a non-selective weed killer two weeks before planting.

• Till the soil thoroughly to a depth of six inches, mixing in the amount of lime and fertilizer recommended by a soil test (contact your county Extension office at 1-800-ASKUGA-1)

• If you have not had the soil tested for its lime and fertilizer needs, dig in 20 pounds of 5-10-15 fertilizer per 1000 square feet. In addition, cover the entire area with a layer of composted material one inch thick. Mix the fertilizer and organic matter thoroughly with the soil.

• Rake the area smooth, removing rocks, clumps and grassy debris.

• Roll the area with a water-filled roller to reveal low spots.

• Fill low spots with soil.

• Scatter seed according to rates below.

• For even distribution, mix 1 pound of seed with 5 pounds of dry corn grits or play sand before putting the mixture into a seed spreader.

• Cover very thinly with wheat straw (3/4 bale per 1000 square feet).

• Follow the watering guidelines below.

• Do not use weed control products on your lawn until at least six weeks after planting. Pull all weeds by hand.

Seeding rate for new lawn:

• Zoysiagrass 1 – 3 pounds per 1000 square feet

All bags of grass seed are required to have a label that shows the results of various tests on that batch of seed.
œAlways buy seed which has been tested for its germination rate within the past six months.

• When deciding which seed to buy, compare the germination percentage and the number of weed seed found in each.
œ You may discover that a higher priced bag of seed is a better value because more of the seed will germinate.


The best time to water a lawn is in the morning, preferably before noon. This allows the grass to dry before nightfall, reducing the risk of disease. Take into account recent rainfall when deciding how much to apply. Watering restrictions may impact how often you can irrigate. Check www.georgiadrought.org for the latest information. If restrictions mandate watering every other day, the schedules below may be modified to fit the rules.

How to measure the amount of water applied by irrigation:
• Place six identical containers randomly in the area wetted by your sprinkler.
• Plastic cups can be used but weight them down with a heavy washer in the bottom of each.
• Let your sprinkler run for an hour.
• Measure the depth of water that has accumulated in each cup.
• Calculate the average of the depths. This gives you the amount (in inches) that has been applied in an hour.
• Make a mental calculation of how long it will take to apply an inch of water.
• Don’t be surprised if your sprinkler must run for more than an hour to apply the water your lawn needs.


• One inch of water immediately after planting.
• Apply enough water daily to prevent the top one-half inch of soil from drying until seedlings are 1.5 inches tall.
• After that, apply one-fourth inch of water every third day for nine days.
• Next apply one-half inch of water every fifth day for ten days.
• After this establishment period, apply one inch of water per week for the rest of the growing season.
• There is no need to water if rainfall supplies the correct amount.

Tags For This Article: seeding, zoysia

Seeding Your Lawn

Part 1: The Setup

  • Read these precautions and considerations for when Seeding a New or Existing Zenith Zoysia Lawn.
  • Run a soil test to determine if lime is needed to raise the pH or if specific fertilizers are needed – none may be necessary, so run the soil test to save money and reduce fertilizer use.
  • Order Zenith seed on-line or pick up at your local Super-Sod store
  • Order Soil3 organic compost from your local Super-Sod store. Using Soil3 promotes the best lawns. You’ll want enough for seedbed preparation and for a light mulch after planting the seed.
  • Kill existing grass and weeds using a non-selective herbicide. Note limitations in the first bullet.

Part 2: Seeding

Seeding is done at least two weeks after grass is sprayed to kill and after existing grass is dead. Hint: Seeding can be done in one day, depending on several factors (size of yard, number of helping hands, ease of removing old grass), but we suggest planning for splitting it into two days. For instance: remove grass and spread/till Soil3 on one day; the next day spread the seed, lightly mulch with Soil3, and roll to smooth.

  • Scrape up dead grass with a shovel or scalp the lawn by setting your mower to its lowest cutting height and mow, bagging and removing clippings and any surface debris.
  • Till or rake to loosen the soil and create a good seedbed.
    Best practice: till in Soil3 compost (1 cubic yard of Soil3 will cover 1,000 sq. ft.)
  • Rake to grade, level, and smooth the bare soil in the lawn planting area.
  • Remove debris, sticks, and stones.
  • Lime as needed to produce a pH of 5.8 to 6.5 (add 50 lb dolomitic limestone per 1,000 sq. ft. if pH is not known).
  • Apply 10 lb balanced lawn fertilizer or Super-Sod’s “Total Lawn Food 5-10-30 Plus Iron.” per 1,000 sq. ft. All grasses perform better where fertilizer is tilled into the soil.
    Note: no need to fertilize if using Soil3 compost in seedbed preparation.
  • Distribute seed: Use a Cyclone-type seeder. Divide seed in half and go over the area twice, distributing from east to west and then north to south to insure uniformity. A hand-held seeder is not expensive and can be found at home supply stores with a garden section.
  • Lightly rake to insure good seed/soil contact – no deeper than 1/4 inch (adequate light speeds germination).
    Best Practice: Instead of lightly raking, use Soil3 as a nutritious mulch. Spread a very thin layer of Soil3 on top of seedlings just to the point of lightly covering. Careful: not too much. (1 cubic yard of Soil3 will cover 4,000 sq. ft.)
  • Roll to smooth (a drum roller can be rented at many hardware and equipment rental stores).
  • If you didn’t spread Soil3 lightly over the seeds, use wheat straw on sloping areas where erosion might be a problem. Distribute straw thinly so not to shade young Zenith seedlings. Read how superior seeding results are gained by using Soil3 compost as a treatment over turfgrass seed, instead of wheat straw.
  • Water the seeds

Watering After Seeding Zenith Zoysia

Water thoroughly and immediately after planting. Continue to water as often as necessary to keep soil constantly moist. Avoid run-off and over watering; seeds will probably need as little as 5 minutes of watering to the point of wetting them, but to keep them moist, you may need to water as frequently as 3-4 times a day during the height of summer (i.e. 3-4 times a day for 5 minutes each time).
After seedlings emerge, water less frequently until watering only as needed once the stand is established. (How and When to Water Your Lawn)


Begin mowing at a 1.5 inch cut-height when there is anything to mow, including weeds. Mowing, plus the dense growth habit of Zenith, will reduce weed presence.
For broad leaf weeds, 2,4-D type herbicides are safe when used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Drive, Revolver, MSMA, or Quicksilver can be used for weed control at seeding and after establishment (may require licensed applicator). Read and follow all label directions when using any pesticide.

Results: These pictures were taken May 9, 2013 (10 months after seeding Zenith on July 17, 2012).

Zoysiagrass: Zorro

ZORRO ZOYSIAGRASS is a fine textured vegetatively propagated clone of a Z. matrella seedling and is noted specifically for its good tolerance to low light conditions, high turf quality, rapid recuperative ability and resistance to several insect, mite, and disease pests. Texas AgriLife Research released Zorro in May of 2002. Zorro tolerates close and frequent mowing and will be suitable for use as a warm-season turf for sports fields, buffer surrounds for bentgrass greens, tee boxes and fairways on golf courses and residential and industrial lawns under either full sun or moderate to heavy shade across the southern United States. It has sufficient winter hardiness to be used in open areas south of the Missouri River Valley and the Appalachian Mountain Range. Zorro is noted for its excellent salt tolerance, its ability to cope with temperature extremes and its low fertility and moisture requirements. Zorro will be especially suited in sunny or shaded areas where rust, yellow patch, brown patch, billbugs, and fall armyworms are a problem. Zorro is a fine textured, highly rhizomatous, vegetatively propagated, zoysiagrass with excellent turf quality. This grass is protected by a Plant Patent.

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