Zoysia japonica 'Meyer'
Common Name: zoysia grass 
Type: Turfgrass
Family: Poaceae
Zone: 5 to 10
Height: 0.25 to 0.50 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 0.50 feet
Bloom Time: Non-flowering
Bloom Description: Green
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium
Flower: Insignificant
Tolerate: Drought, Erosion


Grow in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun. Tolerates some light shade, but turf becomes thinner as the amount of shade increases. Tolerates heat, drought and a wide range of soils. Mow regularly to a height of 1" to 2" tall. Fertilize moderately during the growing season (May to July). Zoysia lawns may be established vegetatively by sod, sprigs or plugs. Sprigs and plugs are best planted in mid to late spring. Sod may be laid as late as early September. In addition, some cultivars grow well from seed. This grass goes dormant after fall frost and remains tan/brown throughout winter. For more specific cultural information on the growing of zoysia, see "Establishment and Care of Zoysiagrass Lawns" (University of Missouri Extension publication G6706) which is available for inspection or purchase at the Kemper Center Information Desk.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Zoysia japonica, commonly just called zoysia is a warm season turfgrass that spreads by stolons and rhizomes to form a dense lawn or grassy area. Advantages include durability, resistance to weeds, tolerance of drought and summer heat, ease of mowing and good green color during the growing season. Disadvantages include straw-colored appearance from mid-fall to mid-spring (goes dormant in cold weather), slow rate of spread, tendency to spread into adjacent property and inclination to produce heavy thatch. Blades may technically grow to 9" long, but are typically mowed to 1-2" tall.

Genus name honors Karl von Zoys (1756-1800), Austrian botanist.

Specific epithet means of Japan.

'Meyer' zoysia forms a dense, bluegrass-like lawn which tolerates foot traffic well and excludes many common weeds. It is the recommended zoysia cultivar for the Midwest transition area (includes St. Louis).


No serious insect or disease problems. White grubs are the most common insect problem. Brown patch and dollar spot are infrequent disease problems.


Turfgrass for lawns, golf courses, sports fields, commercial landscapes, roadsides and in areas where high foot traffic occurs.