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will grass seed choke out weeds

The Good: The one major appeal is that it is fairly low maintenance. Zoysia grass also makes for a durable lawn as it is resistant to weeds, insects, and diseases that would be bad news for other types of grass. Zoysia is an extremely aggressive spreading grass that can literally choke out weeds. Zoysia is pleasant on the eyes and feet. It tends to have a soft, fine texture and is naturally low-growing.

Zoysia is a warm-season grass. Around here, in the Midwest, zoysia grass is a popular choice at golf courses, but not so much for homeowners. However, there are most definitely pros and cons of zoysia grass. The final decision ultimately comes down to what you personally value and strive for from your home lawn.

The Bad: While zoysia grass boasts a few attributes, there are many downsides. One drawback is that zoysia will not stay green year-round. zoysia grass will look its best for about three months of the year. Zoysia lawns lose the desired green hue around mid-autumn. Often, the lawn will stay brown well into Spring, which is a deal breaker for some. So, if year-round color is a must for you, you may want to think twice before choosing zoysia grass. Zoysia will not tolerate heavy traffic during these dormant periods. Another negative is the very poor shade tolerance under trees. Yards with sun and shade areas would require shade beds under trees or choosing a different type of grass seed to grow in shade.

The Ugly: The aggressive nature of zoysia can also be labeled invasive. Be prepared to deal with picky neighbors, should your zoysia lawn spread into their property. Zoysia grass is also prone to thatch problems, therefore routine annual de-thatching and aerification are required. Here in the Midwest, zoysia seed has a difficult time establishing because of our cool soil temperatures. Thus, most people who choose zoysia grass must plant it in plugs or sod during the summer months. This can get pricey. And lastly, zoysia grass sometimes takes two to three years to fill out and reach the desired density. It may be low maintenance, but if immediate results are what you want, zoysia grass may not be for you.

Super Plugs are precut for you into individual 3" by 3" plugs that are ready to plant. They will arrive in easy-to-handle trays of 15 Super plugs.

Zoysia is a particularly hardy grass that grows well in a wide range of conditions and requires far less watering and mowing than most grasses. At the same time, this “tough” grass creates a thick, soft carpet that feels great in bare feet. Zoysia is ideal because it actually grows differently. It sends out runners or “stolons,” expanding sideways more than it grows tall.

After the plugs are established, you can minimize the effects of pet waste by periodically liming the soil in order to restore the pH level to an acceptable range between 6 and 7.

More Tolerant of Animal Waste

Amazoy Freestyle Plugs are shipped in 10" by 15" sheets of grass. Each sheet can produce up to 150 — 1" square plugs. The plugs can be cut bigger, that’s the freestyle part. Bigger plugs means less cutting and less planting, but you will get less plugs from each sheet.

Zoysia is more tolerant to pet urine and feces than most grasses. However, no grass will survive prolonged or constant exposure to pet waste. Pets should be kept off of the new plugs for at least 30 days in order for the plugs to become established.

There are very specific requirements for how deep to plant the seed, the amount of light it needs, and watering. It will be important to follow the seed planting instructions carefully for success.

Amazoy can be planted in part shade, as long as the area to be planted gets at least 2 to 3 hours of direct sunlight a day.

Tip: Paul uses this handy perforated shovel to sift the compost over an area. The shovel is also good for working in water gardens.

What do you do when the greenest things in your lawn are weeds? Jerry Cunningham wonders the same thing, so Gardening by the Yard host Paul James comes to the rescue with answers. The overall approach: Choke the weeds out not with chemicals, but by creating a new lush lawn of healthy grass.

When spreading seeds, it’s important to make sure you don’t throw too much into adjacent beds. Work side to side, and then work back over the same area at right angles to the original. You can either throw the seed out by hand or use a tool that helps relieve strain on your wrist. You can have too much of a good thing. Applying too much seed can create competition for the moisture and nutrients that feel the lawn.

Top-Dress With Compost

Note: Cow manure, like grass seed, can be overdone. A little will go a long way for the freshly laid seeds, so layer no more than 1/4 inch over the lawn. If you have any leftover, feed other trees and plants in your landscape.

Aerating the soil brings oxygen to the soil and helps water seep farther down, which encourages more growth. Although there are aerating machines on the market, they’re noisy, smelly and a little too much for an average size lawn. Paul suggests a manual tool instead.

Top-dressings — such as a cow-manure/alfalfa mix — are underused in lawn care (such as after you’ve sown grass seed). Too bad, because they’re full of organic matter that activates soil.

Jerry’s yard is full of mature trees, which help shade his landscape. Fescue would be a great option for him, because it does well in partially shaded areas. The grass will require a bit more watering than Jerry’s current lawn, but he’ll get better results.