Innovation Zoysiagrass Scores Top Rated Turf Performance

Out of a possible turfgrass performance index (TPI) score of 86, InnovationTM Zoysiagrass, also referred to as KSUZ 0802, received the highest score of 78 compared with Chisholm Zoysia (57) and Meyer Zoysia (52) over a multi-year study at nine locations, including sites in Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma and North Carolina.

A TPI (turfgrass performance index) was calculated for each cultivar by determining the number of times each appeared in the top statistical group for traits rated 1–9 and in the bottom statistical group for billbug damage.

Overall Turf Quality and Leaf Texture

Turf quality was rated monthly from May to September on a 1-to-9 scale considering color, density, texture and uniformity (1 = poorest quality; 9 = optimum quality). Leaf texture was visually rated on a 1-to-9 scale (1 = very coarse, 9 = very fine). Innovation has a finer leaf texture and better density compared to that of Meyer, which resulted in better overall turf quality. Innovation was in the top statistical group in all 11 analyses compared with Meyer with an average TPI score of 5 and Chisholm with an average TPI score of 0. The average turf quality of Innovation maintained at lawn height in various locations throughout the U.S. scored a 6.1 out of 9, which was higher than Meyer’s 5.5. At fairway height, Innovation scored even higher with an average of 6.9 where Meyer scored an average of 5.6.

Genetic Color, Spring Green-Up and Fall Color Retention 

Genetic color and spring green-up were rated once each year on a 1-to-9 scale (1 = brown/dead; 9 = dark green) in nine locations. For genetic color, Innovation was in the top statistical group in all nine locations it was tested in with an average TPI score of 9. This compares to Meyer’s average score of 8 and Chisholm’s average score of 5.

Innovation’s spring green-up was tested alongside Meyer and Chisholm in the same nine locations with a similar score to Meyer in Chisholm in seven analyses. Innovation scored higher in spring green-up than Chisholm in Wichita, Kansas. Innovation also scored higher than Meyer in Wichita Kansas and Blacksburg, Virginia.

Data for fall color retention was collected at six of the nine test locations. The Registration of ‘KSUZ 0802’ Zoysiagrass document states:

“In three of the locations (Wichita, KS, Columbia, MO, and Jackson Springs, NC), fall color retention ratings for cultivars varied significantly. No significant differences were observed for fall color retention between Innovation, Meyer, and Chisholm in Columbia, MO, Fletcher, NC, Jackson Springs, NC (2012), Stillwater, OK, or Dallas, TX. Innovation was statistically similar to Meyer and Chisholm in Wichita, KS (2012), and Jackson Springs, NC (2011), but Chisholm was superior to Innovation in Wichita, KS (2010), and Meyer was superior to Innovation in Jackson Springs, NC (2010). Fall color retention is a desirable trait extending the green appearance of the turf stand into the autumn season; however, early fall dormancy and associated loss of green color (low fall color retention ratings) has been shown to be directly related to increased freezing tolerance (Fry and Huang, 2004). ”

Bluegrass Billbug Resistance

Bluegrass billbug damage was also assessed at select locations. Establishment was rated as a percentage of plot cover from 0 to 100%, with data collected during the first growing season at all nine locations. Innovation proved to be superior to Meyer for resistance to damage caused by the bluegrass billbug.

The key take-a-way from this study is that Innovation is perfectly suited for golf course tees and fairways and home lawns in the transition zone. Be sure to take a look at the two university research documents below for a more detailed account on some of the studies conducted:

Click here to read: Registration of ‘KSUZ 0802’ Zoysiagrass

Click here to read: Release of KSUZ 0802 Zoysiagrass


Visit for more information or read more about Innovation in a related Turf Talk blog, Innovation Zoysiagrass: A New High Quality Variety from Texas A&M and Kansas State.

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