Zoysia Species and Variety Names

I often become confused when trying to remember all of the different zoysiagrass species and varieties. Fortunately, my friend Tim Bowyer from Patten Seed Co. did some research and sent it to me. Now you too can have the benefit of his knowledge!

Tim says:

“There is little complete understanding of the zoysiagrass species population in the US (as with most widely occurring/old varieties there is a continuum of phenotypic types that tend to get ‘discovered’ and labeled within present day classifications) .  Recent tests by Texas A&M have profiled the DNA of zoysiagrasses and there is much smearing of the lines between not just species but genus’s of Zoysiagrasses as well.  There are probably more than 20 commercially grown varieties and many are very similar.  Recent interest in Zoysia, because of its survivability in drought conditions, was sparked by our present water problems.

“In my experience, Zoysia japonica is the best surviving turfgrass in the Atlanta and north Georgia areas as demonstrated by its ability to overtake and establish in tall fescue lawns – even when being maintained as tall fescue!  This is especially true when you compare bermudagrass lawns to zoysiagrass lawns 3 years after installation.  The bermudagrass lawn is usually in a much more depleted condition while the zoysia lawn is still dominant and performing – in most cases.

“The zoysia genus is named for Karl von Zois (Austrian Botanist 1756 – 1800).

“This information comes from ‘Grass Varieties in the United States – 1972’/Agricultural Handbook No. 170 and ‘Manual of the Grasses of the United States’ – A.S. Hitchcock and various sites on the Internet plus personal conversations with breeders.

“More information at Don’t Know Much About Zoysiagrass and Classification of Zoysiagrass .

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