Two Universities, One Versatile Innovation Zoysia Grass

Two prestigious land grant universities, Kansas State and Texas A&M worked together to develop what is likely to be a very impactful improved turf grass that will be used in applications from landscapes to golf courses. Leading the collaboration were Dr. Jack Fry, Professor—Turfgrass Science, Department of Horticulture and Natural Resources at KSU and Dr. Ambika Chandra, Associate Professor—Turfgrass Breeding and Genetics, Texas A&M.

KSUZ 0802, trade named InnovationTMZoysia, is being planted at turf farms across the United States, and has already been planted overseas as well. Innovation Zoysia is poised to benefit the turf industry for the southern two-thirds of the United States from Indiana to Florida and from Virginia to Texas. “It has proven to be very cold hardy in stud­ies- in addition to showing some resistance to billbugs”, commented Roberto Gurgel, Director of Research for Sod Solutions. Sod Solutions has been selected as the worldwide master licensee for Innovation, and has begun selecting and licensing growers both in the United States and beyond.

Zoysias are becoming more and more popular because they have good shade tolerance, and are relatively easy to maintain. Innovation Zoysia has very good shade tolerance, is a fast growing grass for production, has good wear recovery, greens up early in the spring, and has demonstrated good disease tolerance in studies and applications. It will be an excellent option for landscapers and end users in the transition zone and beyond who are looking for a Zoysia for yards, parks and commercial establishments. Golf course superintendents in the transition zone will have access to a great grass that will perform well in their region. Before now, the options were limited to long established varieties.

Innovation Zoysia will be highlighted at the upcom­ing Golf Industry Show (GIS) Show in San Antonio, TX February 5th – 8th and February 12th- 15th at the Turf Grass Producers International (TPI) Conven­tion in Tucson. Visit the Sod Solutions Pro website at for the latest updates on Innovation Zoysia.

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