Zoysia is fairly drought tolerant, once established. Best way to water is to give it a good soaking like you would get with a big rain, then leave it alone until it begins to look stressed. Zoysia will go from green to blue/green to the browning of tips. Water deeply if you see it getting a bluish color. If you have no irrigation, you can let it brown off into dormancy and wait on rain. Generally, Zoysia will need rain or irrigation 2 times a week to keep it really green, growing and pretty in real hot weather. Zoysia can survive a long drought, but it will not be pretty.
Correct mowing height is 2” or shorter. Mowing a little higher before a killing frost may give better winter protection against winter kill.
Nutrient requirements depend on a soil test. Keep P.H. between 6.0 & 6.5. Send soil for lab testing. When you get the results, do as it says.
Do not fertilize with more than 2 lbs of actual nitrogen per 1,000 sq ft for one whole growing season, or you will get a heavy thatch layer, which is not good; leading to the Zoysia choking itself out. Topdressing with sand and Black Wonder 5000 is a good way to destroy thatch. Go to www.sidesspeaders.com
Never fertilize Zoysia until all danger of frost is past (usually May 1st in Piedmont, NC). A late summer application of fertilizer with high potash can eliminate some winter kill, should we have a cold winter.
Weeds: Nutgrass: Spot spray with Halosulfuron-per label. READ THE LABEL-ALL OF IT!
Bermuda in Zoysia: You can suppress and eventually kill Bermuda in Zoysia by mixing (2) Herbicides together. Try a light dose of 1 oz of Turflon Ester(Triclopyr) mixed with a 1⁄2 oz of Fusilade II (Fluazifop) in 1 gallon of water to spot spray Bermuda in Zoysia. Mix in 1⁄2 oz of Nonionic surfactant for a better kill of Bermuda. This should treat approx. 1,000 sq ft. If you do not get a complete kill, treat again. Read both labels completely before using this or any herbicides.
Broadleaf weeds & Grassy weeds: Use one herbicide for the rest of your weeds in Zoysia; OneTime herbicide by BASF. It is a combination of herbicides that will kill most grassy weeds like Crabgrass and most broadleaf weeds like Dandelion. Mixing 1.45 oz of OneTime in 1 gallon of water will spot treat approx. 1,000 sq ft. Mix in .55 oz of Methylated seed oil as a surfactant for a better kill. If all you have is broadleaf weeds use 2-4-0 per label. MSMA also works good on grassy weed. Before using: READ THE LABEL.
To keep weeds from ever coming up in Zoysia: Treat in late March with Barricade Pre-Emergence herbicide at the lowest rate on the label. Always use the lowest rate for any herbicides, or you could sterilize your soil.
Probably the only pest problem you will have on Zoysia in Piedmont, NC will be white grubs. Take a spade and cut out a section of the sod in late summer and if you see white grubs, treat with Sevin or any insecticide labeled for grubs and water in with irrigation to get a good kill.
A summer topdressing of sand mixed with Black Wonder 5000 composted manure is very good for Zoysia or any grass.