What Fertilizer Works Best For Zoysia Grass?

Quick Answer: The best fertilizer for zoysia grass is one that provides a balanced blend of nutrients, particularly nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.

So, you’ve got a beautiful zoysia grass lawn and you want to give it the best care possible. One of the most important aspects of maintaining healthy and vibrant zoysia grass is choosing the right fertilizer. But with so many options available, finding the perfect one can be a daunting task. Don’t worry, though, because we’re here to help! In this article, we’ll explore the world of fertilizers and provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision. Whether you’re a seasoned lawn pro or a beginner, we’ll break it down for you in simple terms. So let’s dive in and discover what fertilizer is best for your zoysia grass!

What Fertilizer Works Best for Zoysia Grass?

What Fertilizer Is Best for Zoysia Grass?


Maintaining a lush, healthy lawn requires proper care and attention, and fertilization is a crucial aspect of that care. When it comes to zoysia grass, a popular warm-season grass variety known for its durability and attractive appearance, choosing the right fertilizer is essential. In this article, we will explore the various factors to consider when selecting the best fertilizer for zoysia grass to help you achieve a vibrant and thriving lawn.

Understanding Zoysia Grass

Before delving into the world of fertilizers, it is important to grasp the characteristics of zoysia grass. This warm-season grass is highly adaptable and thrives in regions with hot climates, making it an excellent choice for homeowners in southern parts of the United States. Zoysia grass is known for its dense growth pattern, drought tolerance, and ability to withstand heavy foot traffic.

1. Matching Fertilizer to Zoysia Grass Needs

Zoysia grass has specific nutritional requirements to maintain its health and vigor. Understanding these requirements will help you provide the best fertilizer for your lawn. Here are some key considerations:

  • Zoysia grass prefers a slightly acidic soil pH between 6 and 6.5. Therefore, selecting a fertilizer with a pH within this range will ensure optimal nutrient availability.
  • Phosphorus is crucial for root development, so look for a fertilizer with a higher middle number (N-P-K ratio). A ratio of 16-4-8 or 12-4-8 is commonly recommended.
  • Potassium (K) promotes strong cell walls and enhances disease resistance. Choose a fertilizer that contains an adequate amount of potassium.
  • Slow-release or controlled-release fertilizers work best for zoysia grass as they provide a steady supply of nutrients over time, reducing the risk of burning the grass.
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2. Nitrogen for Zoysia Grass

Nitrogen is a crucial nutrient for promoting healthy growth and vibrant green color in zoysia grass. However, applying too much nitrogen can lead to excessive growth, weakening the grass and making it more susceptible to disease and pests. Here are some guidelines for nitrogen application:

  • Start by applying nitrogen in early spring, once the grass begins to show signs of green-up. A slow-release fertilizer with a high nitrogen content, such as 24-6-12, is recommended.
  • For established zoysia lawns, apply nitrogen at a rate of 1 pound per 1,000 square feet every 6 to 8 weeks during the growing season.
  • Divide the total amount of nitrogen into multiple applications to avoid excessive growth spurts.

3. Additional Nutrients

While nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the primary macronutrients needed for zoysia grass, other essential micronutrients should not be overlooked. These include iron, manganese, and zinc. Look for fertilizers that contain these micronutrients, either in balanced formulations or as supplements.

Best Fertilizer Options for Zoysia Grass

Now that we understand the nutritional needs of zoysia grass, let’s explore some specific fertilizer options tailored for this warm-season grass:

1. Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food

Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food is a popular choice for zoysia grass. It is a slow-release fertilizer with a 32-0-4 N-P-K ratio, providing a steady supply of nutrients for up to 8 weeks. This fertilizer helps strengthen the roots, improve drought tolerance, and promote lush green growth without excessive thatch buildup.

2. Milorganite Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer

For those seeking an organic option, Milorganite Organic Nitrogen Fertilizer is an excellent choice. It contains slow-release nitrogen derived from recycled organic materials. With an N-P-K ratio of 6-4-0, it enriches the soil, encourages healthy microbial activity, and prevents nutrient leaching.

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3. Pennington UltraGreen Zoysia Grass Seed & Fertilizer

If you have recently overseeded your zoysia lawn or need to fill in bare spots, the Pennington UltraGreen Zoysia Grass Seed & Fertilizer combination is worth considering. This product not only provides the necessary nutrients for established grass but also helps thicken and establish new zoysia grass through its seed component.

Tips for Fertilizing Zoysia Grass

To ensure successful fertilization and optimal results for your zoysia grass, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Follow the instructions on the fertilizer packaging for proper application rates.
  • Water the lawn thoroughly after fertilizing to help activate the nutrients and prevent burning.
  • Mow the grass to an appropriate height before applying fertilizer to ensure even distribution.
  • Avoid fertilizing during periods of drought or extreme heat, as it may stress the grass.

Choosing the right fertilizer is crucial for maintaining a healthy and vibrant zoysia grass lawn. By considering the specific nutritional needs of zoysia grass and selecting a fertilizer that matches those requirements, you can enjoy a lush, durable, and beautiful lawn year-round. Whether you opt for a conventional or organic fertilizer, remember to follow the recommended application guidelines and proper lawn care practices to maximize the benefits of your chosen fertilizer.

How to Care for Zoysia Grass | DoMyOwn.com

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of fertilizer is best for zoysia grass?

Zoysia grass requires a fertilizer that is specifically formulated for its needs. Look for a fertilizer with a high nitrogen content, as zoysia grass thrives in nitrogen-rich environments. Additionally, choose a slow-release fertilizer to provide a steady supply of nutrients over time.

When should I fertilize zoysia grass?

The ideal time to fertilize zoysia grass depends on your location and climate. In general, it is recommended to fertilize zoysia grass in late spring or early summer when the grass starts actively growing. Avoid fertilizing during extreme heat or drought, as this can stress the grass.

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How often should I fertilize zoysia grass?

Zoysia grass typically requires fertilization once or twice a year. For warm-season grasses like zoysia, a single application in late spring or early summer is usually sufficient. However, if your grass is growing in poor soil conditions or you desire more vigorous growth, a second application in early fall may be beneficial.

What nutrient ratio should I look for in a zoysia grass fertilizer?

When choosing a fertilizer for zoysia grass, look for a nutrient ratio that is high in nitrogen (N). A ratio of 3:1:2 or 4:1:2 (nitrogen:phosphorus:potassium) is commonly recommended for zoysia grass. This balance of nutrients promotes healthy growth and helps the grass develop a dense, lush appearance.

Should I use organic or synthetic fertilizer for zoysia grass?

Both organic and synthetic fertilizers can be used for zoysia grass. Organic fertilizers, such as compost or manure, provide nutrients slowly over time and improve soil health. Synthetic fertilizers, on the other hand, deliver nutrients quickly and can be tailored to meet specific nutrient requirements. Ultimately, the choice between organic and synthetic fertilizers depends on personal preference and environmental considerations.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to fertilizing zoysia grass, choosing the right fertilizer is essential for its growth and health. A balanced fertilizer with equal ratios of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium is recommended for zoysia grass. This will provide the necessary nutrients without causing excessive growth or burning the grass. Additionally, it is important to provide regular and consistent fertilization throughout the growing season to maintain the grass’s vigor and appearance. By selecting a suitable fertilizer for zoysia grass and applying it properly, you can ensure a lush and thriving lawn. So, what fertilizer for zoysia grass? Opt for a balanced fertilizer to promote optimal growth and overall health.