has anyone tried Zoysia grass and Sagebrush in Phoenix?

richsdAugust 20, 2013

Hi members,

I realize not many of you share my love of healthy bermuda grass. However, I recently bought some Zenith Zoysia grass seed for my sister's yard because her Bermuda is dying due to heavy shade from a Ficus tree.

Has anyone else grown Zenith Zoysia here in the valley? My research says that it can tolerate more shade than bermuda- that's why I chose it.

Also, I've always loved common sage brush (Artemesia) ever since I was a kid. Drive through northern Nevada or Wyoming and it's everywhere. Has anyone tried it here in the valley? Sunset says it will grow here but has limited landscape usefulness... I was tempted to dig some up that I saw in a Denver field, but decided against it.


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Sagebrush (Artemesia Tridentata, to be exact), yes, but in Tucson.

Mine do pretty well here, but they do get infested with lacebug larvae if they get too much water which makes their foliage "juicy". A good hose blast or two takes care of that problem.

I had to hastily transplant one in April from its original afternoon shade location into an all-day-sunny spot . It looked wilty for about a week, but quickly bounced back. They're tough!

Buy them from a native nursery, rather than digging up a wild one from a colder wetter climate. There's lots of regional diversity in this species, and I've been told that sagebrush from local gene pools tend to do better.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 2:54PM
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Thanks, Juttah. That's just the info I needed. So I won't bother taking one from Colorado to Phoenix.

By the way, have you tried Russian Sage (perovskia)? I don't see them around here, but their labels say they can take low desert/heat.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2013 at 8:57PM
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Zoysiagrass is a good turf for hot, dry climates with cold winters. It grows dense and withstands high traffic and wear very well and will tolerate some shade. Just like Bermuda it goes dormant in winter. It is slower growing than bermuda and does not recover if overseeded.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 1:52PM
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Thanks treelvr, I'll post how my experiment goes with the zoysia grass once the seedlings are up and established.

I'm also experimenting with 'Legacy' buffalo grass. So far it's tolerating our oven temperatures as good as my bermuda grass.

On the topic of grasses, I'm trying more varieties of ornamental Miscanthus grasses. I'm finding that they seem to be more demanding here than the relatively easy to grow Pennisetum purple fountain grass that's very common (but nice.)

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 7:13PM
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