Fine Zoysia Studies



"In 1982, an expert with an eye for quality   turfgrasses took note of some particularly appealing lawns surrounding civic administration buildings near the town of Ooneshima on the southern Japanese island of Kyushu. This grass was noteworthy for its dense growth pattern and lack of weeds. It was also compelling because of its fine texture and more uniform appearance than other grasses in the area. This Zoysia became the original breeding stock for a hybrid grass that Texas A&M University's Texas   Agricultural Experiment Station released in July of 1996 as Cavalier Zoysia. Cavalier looks somewhat like Tifway Bermuda grass, but withstands cold better than Tifway. In addition to its cold hardiness, Cavalier demonstrates good shade and salt tolerance. (This salt tolerance allows for application in areas with less than optimal water quality.) Cavalier Zoysia also resists many insects and diseases – including fall armyworm and Rhyzoctonia blight. It has also shown significant resistance to the tropical sod webworm and the tawny mole cricket. Ranked as one of the top zoysia in the NTEP (National Turfgrass Evaluation Program), Cavalier Zoysia is an excellent choice for home lawns, golf course fairways and tee boxes, parks and sports fields. Some industry experts believe that Cavalier may be the grass of the future for many golf courses because it grows well in shaded areas, recovers from wear   rapidly, and is winter hardy as far north as Kansas City. "


Intended Use: Commercial,Golf,Residential


Mowing Height: 1/2" - 1 1/2"

About Cavalier

Cavalier Zoysia was developed by Dr. Milt Engelke and Texas A&M University.  It is a Z matrella which is vegetatively propagated and genetically stable and uniform. Its chromosome number is 2-n=40.  Cavalier rated number one in the NTEP trials over 3 years at 24 locations ranging from California- Georgia and north to Nebraska and Colorado.


Home lawns • Golf course fairways and tee boxes • Parks • Sports fields and other recreational areas

Cavalier has been identified by several golf course architects as the “future grass of choice for golf course fairways in the cool season-warm season transition zone.


  • Cavalier is distinguished from other zoysiagrass by its fine texture, long, narrow leaf, with low rhizome, but high density stolon production
  • Good to excellent salt tolerance, and good shade tolerance
  • Resistant to the fall armyworm and the tropical sod webworm
  • Intermediate in its growth and recovery rate
  • Good to excellent winter hardiness and will persist in regions north of Kansas, Missouri and Southern Illinois as well as the Southern states


Emerald Zoysia sod features at-a-glance:

  • A turfgrass for full sun or partial shade
  • Drought tolerant; this lawn does not like standing water
  • Emerald green-colored lawn
  • Finest leaf texture
  • Dense, lush, thick sod crowds out weeds and other grasses
  • Wear and traffic-tolerant turfgrass
  • Slow growing lawn
  • Superior disease resistance
  • Tolerates extreme heat
  • Good winter hardiness (but best adapted to the mid- to deep-South)
  • Low growth habit
  • Can be rotary or reel mowed

Emerald Zoysia sod has these further characteristics:

  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass has the finest leaf blade of the commercially-produced varieties and is the perfect turfgrass for making a positive lawn “first impression.”
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass is a very cold-hardy, warm-season turfgrass that stays green longer into the fall than other varieties. 
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass has a somewhat higher maintenance level than other Zoysias. It simply cannot be neglected for long periods of time, but if fertilized once or twice annually, watered as needed, and cut regularly,      it makes an absolutely enviable lawn, in both full sun or moderate shade.
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass is less troubled by insect pests than Meyer.
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass can be installed as dormant sod, but it is not a recommended best practice for this variety.
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass is the first commercially-grown, vegetatively-propagated F1 hybrid Zoysia (Zoysia japonica × Z. tenuifolia) produced in the US. Bred by Dr. Forbes and released in 1955 (several years      after Meyer), this improved Zoysia grass exhibits a finer leaf texture      than other Zoysia japonica grass selections like Meyer and Zenith. Its attractive fine texture and color resulted in Emerald being declared the “Cadillac of lawn grasses.”
  • Emerald Zoysia lawns can be mowed with a reel or a rotary lawn mower, but for the best looking Emerald lawn, we do recommend a reel mower.
  • Emerald Zoysia turfgrass is only reproduced vegetatively. Emerald Zoysia seed is not available for starting Emerald Zoysia lawns.

Emerald Zoysia sod is ideal for:

  • Show-piece lawns, where outstanding appearance is worth a premium: near patios, around pool decks, small turf islands in retail and apartment complexes, and larger corporate or commercial areas where first impressions really matter!
  • Recreational sites
  • Public and private parks
  • Home lawns
  • All sod and turfgrass needs in highly visible areas in warm climates

Emerald zoysia is a fine-textured, dense-growing, dark green Turfgrass. Emerald was released by the USDA and the Georgia Agricultural Station in 1955 and is known as the “Cadillac” of turf.     Emerald is very drought and cold tolerant. It is slow to spread, but once     established, it crowds out weeds. It is wear resistant to foot traffic. Emerald grows in full sun but also has good shade tolerance.


Intended Use: Commercial,Golf,Residential


Mowing Height: 3/4" - 2"



A fine-bladed zoysia grass with a deep green color, Geo is one of the most beautiful turf grasses you will find in a landscape. Geo has good to excellent shade tolerance compared to other zoysias and is extremely wear tolerant, making this a top choice for golf courses as well as residential lawns. If you want the best looking lawn in the neighborhood and are willing to perform a little more seasonal maintenance, Geo is the best choice. If your landscape has a limited amount of turf, Geo may also best grass due to its fine blade width.

Geo Zoysia Specs

  • Uses: Golf, Commercial, Sports/Parks, Home
  • Color: Dark Green
  • Blade Width: 2.0 mm
  • Feel: Very Soft
  • Fall Color Retention: Very Good
  • Spring Greenup: Very Good

Geo Zoysia Care

  • Mower: Rotary, Reel
  • Height: 1-2″
  • Weed Control: Very Good

Geo Zoysia is a cross between a Zoysia japonica and a Zoysia tenuifolia that offers specifiers, landscapers, golf course designers, sportsturf managers and homeowners exceptional performance with low maintenance across a wide spectrum of applications. Geo is a dark-green turfgrass with fine-textured leaf blades that grows in a wide variety of soil and climate conditions. Geo performs well in sandy and clay type soils throughout the southern U.S. and has tough runners, rhizomes, and deep roots that provide excellent sod strength, wearability, and improved drought tolerance. Geo performs well in hot, arid, sandy areas of the southwest U.S., and has proven itself drought tolerant in many challenging applications. Geo has very good shade tolerance and has performed well in field and homeowner sites. Its shade tolerance is better than that of most Zoysias and it performs well into the transition zone. Additionally, Geo is highly tolerant of most herbicides making it easier to control weeds during production and for the end user.

Production and Quality Control

Genetic purity and preservation of the Geo Zoysia variety is of primary importance. Only licensed turfgrass producers are authorized to grow Geo for sale. All licensed Geo production is monitored through ongoing quality control and quality assurance programs. Additionally, producers can choose to certify their Geo through local state crop certification agencies that provide rigid standards and regulations for production, harvesting, and handling, that when adhered to, ensure a genetically pure, high quality, “certified” product.

Installation and Establishment

Installation and the care taken during the initial days that follow are the most critical factors in determining the long-term quality and performance of Geo Zoysia. Harvesting and transplantation are extremely stressful to any turfgrass and precautionary measures should be taken to help reduce further cultural and environmental stresses. Geo is a tough, hardy turfgrass that once established, produces a beautiful lifetime lawn, landscape, sportsturf or golf course.Proper care, including pre-installation soil preparation and limiting time on the pallet to less than 24 hours, yields positive results. Improper care, however, can cause death of the turfgrass or damage that results in lengthy recovery and additional expense. 

Irrigating Newly Installed Geo: Proper watering upon installation is essential to successful establishment

  • Prior to installation, ensure irrigation systems are working properly and      covering all areas to be planted
  • Water thoroughly upon installation ensuring that both the Geo is wet and the soil is moist to a depth of 3”, which is approximately 1” of water per day
  • In hot weather, water within a few hours of installation to mitigate severe      damage or loss due to heat / dehydration stress
  • Shaded areas and heavy soils require less water than full-sun areas and sandy soils
  • When proper rooting is evident, alter irrigation program accordingly

Mowing: New installations are often uneven and care should be taken not to scalp high spots:

  • Mow within 10 days of installation and bag clippings for the first few mowings
  • After the first few mowings see post establishment instructions for proper      mowing practices.

Fertility: Use a transplant-friendly regimen that will help reduce shock and minimize disease

  • Use a starter fertilizer that is low in nitrogen and higher in phosphorous and potassium
  • For best results always perform a soil test and fertilize accordingly

Post Establishment

Mowing: Mowing is a critical and often under appreciated cultural practice:

  • Maintain Geo at 1-2″(1″ is optimal)
  • Heights above 2″ will reduce quality
  • Can be maintained at heights of 1/2″ if regularly mowed with a reel mower
  • Rotary mowers are preferred for heights 1″ or higher
  • Reel mowers are preferred for heights below 1″
  • Mow every 5-7 days during the active growing season
  • Mow every 10-14 days, or as needed, during cooler weather
  • Never cut more than 1/3 of the total length of the blade at any one mowing
  • If a scheduled mowing is missed and clippings clump on top of the Geo, bag or vacuum clippings to reduce shade-out
  • Vertical mowing (verticutting) may be performed to renovate Geo
  • In early spring, mow Geo tight, bagging all clippings to remove excessive thatch. This will help the grass to recover from winter dormancy. Don’t worry about scalping (removing 1/3″ of the leaf blade) at this time, as this is a beneficial maintenance practice for spring green-up and growth.

Insecticides: Avoid stress from insects by performing insecticidal applications as needed:

  • For any insecticide application, always read and follow label directions carefully
  • Early identification and treatment of insect stress minimizes inputs and injury
  • Make routine observations of the landscape, and be aware of seasonal pests like billbugs, armyworms and webworms
  • Preventatively apply Bayer Advanced Lawn Season-Long Grub Control Ready-To-Spread granules annually to control billbug larve/grubs. For better results, make a spring and fall application to break the prest cycle.
  • Control armyworms and webworms with Sevin, Orthene, Diazinon or Permethrin-based products
  • Control billbugs with Sevin (adults), Talstar (adults), DeltaGuard (adults), Merit (larval/grub form), Mach2 (larval/grub form) To ensure complete control, you must apply 2-3 applications of the larval/grub form insecticide.
  • Consult with local experts for insecticide recommendations if you are unsure of label instructions
  • If necessary, you may want to reference the University of Florida’s Pest Control Guide For Turfgrass Managers and/or the University of      Georgia’s Turfgrass Pest Control Recommendations for Professionals for more detailed recommendations.

Herbicides: Proper mowing, irrigation and fertilization of Geo will reduce weed problems. If a weed problem persists:

  • For any herbicide application, always read and follow label directions      carefully
  • Improper use of herbicides can severely damage or kill Geo
  • Make routine observations of the landscape being aware of seasonal weeds
  • Identify the type of weed causing the problem before using any chemical controls
  • Geo is tolerant of most commonly used herbicides
  • Consult with local experts for herbicide recommendations if you are unsure of label instructions

Fungicides: Geo has shown resistance to most fungal problems and controls should be used only as needed:

  • For any fungicide application, always read and follow label directions      carefully
  • Early identification and treatment of disease stress minimizes inputs and injury
  • Make routine observations of the landscape being aware of unusual symptoms
  • Consider a broad-spectrum fungicide application if predictable seasonal problems are noted
  • Ask your Geo grower to apply fungicide 1-2 weeks prior to harvest during times of high, disease-inducing stress
  • Consult with us for fungicide recommendations if you are unsure of label instructions

Irrigation: Established Geo exhibits drought tolerance due to improved plant genetics and growth characteristics:

  • Watering requirements are greatly dependent on soil type, season, geography and other factors
  • Ensure irrigation systems are working properly and covering all areas covered by Geo
  • Make routine observations of the landscape and learn the signs (i.e., wilting) that indicate when irrigation is required
  • Shaded areas and heavy soils require less water than full-sun areas and sandy soils
  • Encourage deep root growth by watering until the soil is moist to a depth of 3”,shallow watering encourages shallow roots
  • Infrequent deep watering maximizes drought resistance and tolerance

Fertility: Proper fertility practices will encourage healthy, disease and insect free Geo:

  • Perform soil tests to understand your soil type(s) and condition and best determine your specific fertility needs
  • Generally, Geo requires 3 fertilizer applications/year: spring, summer and fall
  • Make routine observations and fertilize according to what the landscape indicates
  • Understand what and how much fertilizer you are applying
  • Avoid disease and insect inducing growth flushes by reducing Nitrogen rates
  • Improve color and limit growth surges by utilizing iron sources such as Milorganite
  • A total of 3 LB of Nitrogen per 1,000 sqft should be adequate for most applications
  • Apply balanced fertilizers with lower rates of Nitrogen in the summer and fall

To ensure optimum quality and performance of Geo, users must accomplish necessary care and maintenance. This care and maintenance has been formalized above in the Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Geo Zoysia. These BMPs are written as a guide and should be modified as local climate, soil, and environmental conditions dictate. It is important to note that no “magic fertilizer” or “super-chemical” will solve all problems or make any turfgrass perfect. Through consistent application of the BMPs and on-going evaluation, education, and modification of these practices, however, users will greatly enhance the quality and performance of Geo Zoysia.

Keep Your Geo Zoysia Looking Spectatular Year-round

Geo Zoysia is one of the most beautiful turf varieties in the southern United States. But there are some differences maintenance – wise from the wide bladed zoysia’s like EMPIRE Turf. It starts with proper installation and then relies on following the best maintenance practices for the grass.



Zeon Zoysia is the #1 Selling Zoysia in America. And for good reason! This fine textured grass has been called the “most beautiful zoysia on the market today.” Turfgrass professionals and consumers alike often note Zeon’s “Wow Factor”. University tests agree, Zeon Zoysia is truly something special. In NTEP (National Turfgrass Evaluation Program) testing, Zeon Zoysia ranked #1 in turf quality. NTEP also confirmed that Zeon Zoysia produces far less thatch than other Zoysia grasses tested.


Zeon Zoysia

  • Versatile: Use for lawns, golf courses, sports fields, resorts
  • Adaptable: Thrives in a wide range of soil conditions
  • Drought tolerant: Less water requirements.
  • Salt Tolerant: In salty environments, simply mow the grass and remove clippings to remove salt from the soil
  • Easy Care: Less thatch than other standard zoysias.
  • Shade Tolerant: Grows in full sun or moderate shade.

Zeon Zoysia is the grass of the 2016 Olympics in Rio! Golf has returned as an Olympic sport to the 2016 Games, the grass the golfers are playing on is Zeon Zoysia. The grass was selected for use on the tees, roughs and fairways of the course being built specifically for the Olympics. Zeon’s beauty and playability contributed to the choice. More important, Zeon’s low water use and low fertilizer requirements were critical for the Olympic Committee’s desire to build a sustainable golf course.



Zeon is a fine-bladed Zoysiagrass. It has a beautiful dark green color and soft leaf texture making it a true “barefoot lawn grass.” Zeon Zoysia’s extensive root system allows it to quickly recover from drought, it can handle full sun, and has excellent shade tolerance only requiring as little as 3 hours of direct sunlight.


Zorro® is the #1 rated zoysia grass in the NTEP trials. It is a very fine bladed zoysia with a deep, green color that is suitable for golf courses, commercial and residential lawns.

Zorro’s density, texture, and adaptability to different mowing heights offer an excellent playing surface for tees, fairways, fringes and roughs. Zorro can be mowed with a reel mower at 1/4” or with a rotary at 2”. Zorro has superior shade tolerance to most other warm season grasses allowing it to grow in areas other grasses simply can’t. Zorro has excellent fall color retention and is an ideal choice from the tropics to the transition zone.

Not only is this Zoysia a great product for Golf Courses but it is an unbelievable grass in your yard and commercial business.

Have you ever seen a healthier looking sports turf in the shade than Zorro? This grass is the #1 zoysia in the world for a reason! 

Tolerance chart


Wear tolerance



Shade tolerance



Cold tolerance



Drought tolerance



Mowing Heights

1/4” to 3”