PLEASE help with new Zoysia (Empire) sod

ZoysiaLadyJune 7, 2011

I have relatively new Zoyzia Empire (a little more than 2 months old). It started establishing well; then I noticed some areas do not grow roots, some areas have fungus. I hired TruGreen - after 1 month with them the grass became even worse - I do not know exactly if it is worse because of TruGreen care or something else, but anyway I fired TG and decided to put the grass on organic program. The problem is I do NOT know what to start with: TG heavily fertilized, put fungicide on, however the grass DO have fungi now, still do NOT have roots somewhere... What should I do now to fight diseases, make the grass healthy and weed free. I let it grow about 4 inches to fight weeds. Also found about 40 green and white cartepillars on 1 sq. ft of the grass recently - removed them by hand...When I dig - find some grub as well. Sprayed nematodes, cooper, organic insecticide, molasses, soap, Turf Pro.... It is not getting any better.

Please, help, could anybody recommend a full year-round programm to care for the grass from this point on?

P.S. I have 9K sq ft lot. and cannot find large amounts of corn meal and corn gluten on reasonable prices in my area (Daytona Beach, FL).

I will appreciate all comments and advice. Thank you all in advance!

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Did you purchase this sod and install it your self or did you hire a landscaper to do that?
What was the soil like before this sod was laid?

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 7:08AM
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I live in Florida, and soil here is sandy, but I tested pH - it was 6-6.5 -7 in different zones, never higher that 7, and I know that Zoysia can tolerate pretty broad range of pHs, and thus I hoped it would be OK for the grass. Upper inch of my property is not sandy, but dark from previous grasses, I guess, and I added 1 more inch of topsoil before sodding. Yes, we sodded ourselves.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 3:34PM
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The term "topsoil" is meaningless because all that "topsoil" is is the top 4 to 6 inches of soil from someplace.
Sandy soils, in Florida or anywhere else, tend to drain really well and they do not retain much soil moisture so unless the soil was amended well with organic matter, which will aid in moisture retention, your grass may not have enough water to grow.
To root well grasses need 4 to 6 inches of a good soil, well endowed with organic matter, that is evenly moist but well drained.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 8:03AM
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What would you advise? Should I spread compost now and in fall, would it help if I add compost little by little every month? Thank you.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 11:42AM
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You could add, and I would, some compost or other forms of organic matter every month as long as it is not thick enough to smother the grass. Compost probably would be somewhat better initially because that has the wee buggers that make up the Soil Food Web in it so your soil will then have some to later digest other forms of organic matter.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 7:46AM
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Thank you for your advice: I added peat moss and compost last weekend. I will add them every month. Would you advise to add TurfPro as well - it is much easier to addd than moss and compost? Should I fertilize or compost is sufficient? What else organic matter can I add: I am so desperate to help those grass to survive :)? Should I spray nematodes? What about molasses over compost? would it feed benificial life in compost? Thank you very much!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 6:37PM
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I have had my Empire Zoysia for three months now with no issues(yet). I just put coffee grinds and soybean meal down.
I'm about to get some cornmeal since it's starting to rain a lot now.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 8:24AM
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