Thursday, November 1, 2012


Nick Christians
November 1, 2011

Here is a post from Omaha concerning a reddish discoloration of Zoysiagrass.  I need some feedback from you Zoysia experts.

It is from:

Rob Elder
Owner, Omaha Organics Lawn Care

Rob has several Zoysia lawns, most of which look fine.  This one has taken on a reddish discoloration late in the season.

He uses a 4 step organic program on it.  He also put down gypsum in August for a sodium problem.  He topdressed it with organic matter.Sodium does not appear to be high on the soil test.

He gave me the soil tests and phosphorus in in an adequate range.

Some varieties of grass will turn red in the fall when temperatures cool, but this is the only Zoysia lawn that it is occurring one.  Does anyone with Zoysia experience out there have any ideas.  Let me know or contact Rob directly.

 Here is the reddish color on the Zoysia from a couple of weeks ago, just before dormancy.

Here is the lawn a couple of days ago, after the Zoysia became dormant.

 Heavy clay soil on the lawn.


Micah Woods said...

I've seen this in the autumn on Zoysia japonica in Japan before it goes dormant. I don't know that it is necessarily a problem and as far as I can tell it is just other pigments showing when the chlorophyll content is reduced.

John Kauffman said...

I agree, Micah. I've seen similar coloring on zoysiagrass in northern Arkansas, southern Missouri, and southern Kentucky in the fall. It seems to occur more in northern transition zone areas, perhaps where chlorphyll production slows noticeably earlier than carotenoid degradation.

I've also noticed it more prominently in drought years, which is perhaps why it is being noticed this year.

Ryan Madden said...

I echo Micah and John's comments. The only thing that I would add would be to stop topdressing with organic matter. Zoysia produces too much as it is. We fight thatch layer in zoysia every year in the transition zone. Also, by adding organic matter to the zoysia this time of year, it leaves the plant more susceptible to Zoysia Patch or now known as Large Patch (Rhizoctonia spp.).