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El Toro Zoysia® Maintenance Instructions

Watering New Sod:
1) To prevent wilting, water sod lightly after each 200 square foot section is installed.

2) After all the sod is down and has been rolled, turn on sprinklers and let them run until the sod is well soaked.

3) For the first week, keep sod well soaked by watering every few hours, i.e., at 7 am, 11 am and 2 pm, until runoff begins.

4) During the second week, water twice a day, at 7 am and 2 pm, until runoff begins.

5) During the third week, water all sod once a day at 7 am, until runoff begins, gradually tapering back to once every two or three days.

6) Do not water new sod between 4 pm and 4 am.

7) Adjust watering schedule according to weather and season:  Water more frequently during warm and/or windy weather.

Guidelines for Watering Established Sod:
1) Once the lawn has become established, at approximately 6—8 weeks, water as infrequently as possible, while maintaining deep soil penetration. In the cooler months this would be once or twice a week; in the warmer months it could be three or more times a week.

2) Water for as long as possible to deeply penetrate the soil (up to 30 minutes). Cycle irrigation may be necessary if runoff occurs within a short time; i.e., water until runoff occurs, then stop and wait for the water to penetrate the soil (usually 1 -2 hours). Repeat watering and waiting until water deeply penetrates the soil.

3) Water as early in the day as possible (first thing in the morning). Do not water lawn between 4 pm and 4 am.

4) Do not water shaded areas of lawn as frequently as areas that receive full sun.

5) Note of Caution: Be sure to watch out for a blue-gray tint and/or limp areas inf the lawn.  This is not a fungus; rather, it is caused by dehydration and indicates that immediate watering is needed.  Such spots usually occur on tops of mounds, or in areas where sprinkler coverage is not adequate.  (Watering in full sun is acceptable and will not burn the blades.)

Mowing Guidelines:
1) Mow El Toro Zoysia weekly throughout its growing season. Mowing height may vary between 1" and 2", depending on personal preference.

2) Never mow off more than 1/3 of the grass blade length at one time, since plant injury may result.

3) Always remove grass clippings or use a mulching mower.

Fertilizing:
1) Fertilize once every month during the warm season, with the first application occurring in the spring when the lawn begins to recover from dormancy.

2) During the warm growing season (March—November) the amount of clippings generated when mowing will serve as a "tip-off" to the fertilizer needs of the lawn.  When there are less clippings than in previous mowings, the growth of the lawn has slowed and fertilizer is probably necessary.

3) Use Marathon All Season® Fertilizer and follow label directions in using the higher rates recommended for Marathon.

Insects & Diseases:
El Toro Zoysia is highly resistant to insects and diseases.  Generally water and fertilizer will help El Toro Zoysia outgrow any pests.

Dormancy:
1) El Toro Zoysia will slow its growth as the average temperature cools.

2) The lawn will turn brown when the first frost occurs and remain dormant until the following Spring.

3) During dormancy watering, fertilizing, and mowing will not be necessary.

4) It has become quite popular to spray dormant turf with green turf dye.  If done carefully, the result can be very natural looking. Consult your nurseryman for product recommendations.

De-Thatching:
Generally, El Toro Zoysia will require renovation every two years, in the Spring, as a result of building up a thick, spongy thatch. Use a vertical mower set at 1/4" - 1/2" to de-thatch your lawn.  Do not set machine lower than 1/4". After renovation, fertilize and water your lawn to speed up recovery.