zeon zoysia vs emerald zoysia

Turf Wars: Zeon Zoysia vs Emerald Zoysia

Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia are two popular warm-season grass varieties that are commonly used in landscaping. Both grasses are known for their dense, lush growth and their ability to withstand hot, dry conditions. Both grasses have a number of similarities and differences, and understanding these can help you determine which variety is best suited for your needs. In this article, we will take a closer look at Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia and compare their various characteristics.


Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia both have a fine-bladed texture that gives them a luxurious look. However, Zeon Zoysia has a darker green color and a denser growth pattern than Emerald Zoysia. This makes it an excellent choice for creating a lush, uniform appearance in landscapes.  

Zeon Zoysia is a dense, low-growing turf that can withstand heavy foot traffic and recover quickly from damage. The blade width of Zeon Zoysia is about 1/16″ to 1/8″ and the grass grows upright, which gives it a very tidy appearance.  

Emerald Zoysia, on the other hand, has a slightly wider blade, with a width of around 1/8″ to 3/16″. The grass grows in a horizontal pattern, which gives it a carpet-like appearance. Emerald Zoysia exhibits a coarser texture and tends to be more prickly to the touch compared to Zeon. 

Drought Tolerance

Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia are both known for their exceptional drought tolerance. However, when comparing, Zeon Zoysia has a higher tolerance for drought compared to Emerald Zoysia due to its deeper root system, high leaf density, and ability to retain moisture in its leaves and soil. Zeon Zoysia can survive for an extended period of drought without showing signs of damage, making it ideal for areas with limited rainfall or water restrictions. 

Emerald Zoysia, on the other hand, can survive in drought conditions but has a lower tolerance for prolonged drought. Its shallow root system and lower leaf density make it more susceptible to drought damage if the drought persists for an extended period. Emerald Zoysia is better suited for areas with moderate rainfall and where drought conditions are not prolonged. 

Shade Performance

Both Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia are excellent choices for shade-tolerant grasses. However, Zeon Zoysia can grow well in areas with as little as 4 hours of sunlight per day and has exceeded other warm season varieties in almost all shade studies.

Zeon Zoysia is slower growing, making it better suited for shaded areas with less frequent mowing requirements. It is also less prone to disease and insect problems, which can be an issue in shaded areas. 

Emerald Zoysia is faster growing, therefore requires more frequent mowing.

Wear Resistance

Both Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia have outstanding wear resistance. Both grasses are popular choices for lawns, golf courses, and sports fields because of their ability to withstand heavy foot traffic and other forms of wear and tear.  

However, Zeon Zoysia has a finer leaf texture and denser growth pattern, which helps it recover more quickly from damage. Emerald Zoysia is also more prone to disease and insect problems compared to Zeon Zoysia, which can be an issue in areas with heavy foot traffic. Ultimately, the choice between the two will depend on the specific conditions and requirements of your landscape or turf. 


Zeon Zoysia requires less maintenance than Emerald Zoysia, making it a more practical choice for busy landscape professionals and homeowners a like. This variety requires less mowing, fertilization, and irrigation, making it a cost-effective option for commercial landscapes.

Zeon also holds an advantage in that it produces less thatch compared to Emerald, resulting in a healthier and more manageable lawn that requires less frequent dethatching interventions. 

In contrast, Emerald Zoysia requires more frequent maintenance to maintain its appearance. Emerald also presents challenges when it comes to mowing, as its denser and coarser growth pattern makes it less compatible with standard rotary mowers, often requiring specialized equipment or additional effort to achieve optimal results.  

Insect and Disease Resistance

Zeon Zoysia is highly resistant to insects and diseases, making it a low-maintenance option for landscaping projects. This variety is resistant to common pests such as chinch bugs and armyworms, as well as diseases such as brown patch and dollar spot. In contrast, Emerald Zoysia is more susceptible to insect and disease damage, making it a less practical choice for landscaping projects that require low maintenance. 

Zeon Zoysia: The Unmistakable Choice for a Superior Lawn Experience

In conclusion, when comparing Zeon Zoysia and Emerald Zoysia, it becomes apparent that Zeon is the superior choice for homeowners and landscapers alike. Its impressive drought tolerance, remarkable shade adaptability, and overall lower maintenance requirements provide a more practical and sustainable option for various lawn conditions. Furthermore, its softer, finer-textured blades and lush, green appearance contribute to its aesthetic appeal. While Emerald Zoysia has its merits, the advantages of Zeon Zoysia simply outweigh them, making it the clear frontrunner for those seeking a beautiful and resilient turfgrass solution.


Still unsure of which zoysia grass variety best suites your needs? The experts at NG Turf can help assess your specific needs and recommend the best grass variety. Don’t hesitate to contact our Certified Turfgrass Professionals at 770.832.8608 or  info@NGTurf.com.


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