genus zoysia


[zoi-see-uh, -zee-uh, -shuh, -zhuh]

Zoysia is a genus of eight species of creeping grasses native to southeastern and eastern Asia (north to China and Japan) and Australasia. These species, commonly called zoysia or zoysiagrass, are found in coastal areas or grasslands. The genus is named after the Austrian botanist Karl von Zois.Species

Cultivation and uses

Because they can tolerate wide variations in temperature, sunlight, and water, these grasses are among the most widely used for lawns in temperate climates. They are used on golf courses to create fairways and teeing areas. They resist disease and bear up well under traffic. The cultivar Zoysia 'Emerald' (Emerald Zoysia; a hybrid between Z. japonica and Z. matrella) is particularly popular.

In subtropical climates of North America, zyosia grass has naturalized in places. For landscape use it is available commercially as sod in some areas. In typical savannah climates (warm wet/dry seasons) such as southern Florida, zoysia grows during the warm-wet summer and is dormant in the drier, cooler winter months. It is popular because of its fine texture and soft feel, and low growth habit. It can form dense mats and even mounds that grow over low features. In contrast to Saint Augustine grass, it generally requires less fertilization and is less prone to insect and fungus damage, depending on environmental conditions. For best appearance, turf experts recommend reel blade mowers for zoysia.


  • Kew checklist of Grasses (see Poaceae page for details)

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