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Old 06-01-2014, 01:46 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,266,376 times
Reputation: 28402

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I'm posting this here instead of the gardening forum because grass is so specialized for regional climates that I am only interested in responses from people in north Texas.

I am strongly considering resodding this fall with Empire zoysia. My current "lawn" is St. Augustine. I put "lawn" in quotes because more than half of it is bare, brown, or weeds at this point. With our watering restrictions, maintaining St Augustine is almost impossible. Other St A lawns in the neighborhood are also struggling. Bermuda is faring better and the zoysia lawns are spectacular.

My lot is 80x115. The house and garage footprint are 2240 square feet. There's a double driveway cutting through the backyard, and a 150 sq ft patch where a shed used to be and will be again in the future. There are five large, mature trees at the front and side where no grass grows underneath. Most of the eastern side of the front yard is in shade most of the day.

So...for those of you under similar circumstances...how much did you have to pay someone to do a job like this? Including prep, materials, and labor? A friend of a friend is quoting me $400 per pallet installed for Empire zoysia...no idea if this is a good price or not. A pallet covers 450 square feet, right? He's estimating it might cost $2400-$2500 to do the front yard, but he has to come out here and measure it to be sure.

Thoughts?
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Old 06-01-2014, 07:09 AM
Status: "The 2nd most Interesting Man" (set 6 days ago)
 
Location: DFW - Coppell / Las Colinas
35,422 posts, read 38,831,576 times
Reputation: 42387
You might try getting your current yard in good shape and save some money.
St Augustine failure many times is due to lack of sun light. Have you trimmed your trees up high so light gets underneath ?

Sun Light, fertilizer and a little water might get that SA growing really well this summer.
You could even spot re-sod with SA and get it growing.

Don't know much about Zoysia.
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Old 06-01-2014, 07:22 AM
 
Location: Prosper
6,257 posts, read 13,496,911 times
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A pallet is 450 sq ft. A pallet of Zoysia costs $250 to $300 usually and is more expensive than the standard St Augustine or Bermuda, about double the cost. I paid $260 per pallet.

$400 installed is a pretty good price, especially if they warranty it in case it dies. I sodded my backyard myself, and you have to be fairly strong to be able to lift cut sod and move it around the yard. If I were to do it again, I'd probably pay to have it installed.

Zoysia carries a higher price because it's a much better grass than St Augustine or Bermuda. It's also more shade tolerant and it looks and feels fantastic. The trade off is that it's slow growing and costly.
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Old 06-01-2014, 08:49 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,266,376 times
Reputation: 28402
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakin View Post
You might try getting your current yard in good shape and save some money.
St Augustine failure many times is due to lack of sun light. Have you trimmed your trees up high so light gets underneath ?

Sun Light, fertilizer and a little water might get that SA growing really well this summer.
You could even spot re-sod with SA and get it growing.

Don't know much about Zoysia.
I think it's beyond saving. I sent photos to him and he says it looks like a classic case of SAD (St. Augustine Decline). Others who have seen the lawn in person say the same thing: SAD, SAD, SAD. There's no way to fix SAD other than to replace diseased sod with SAD-resistant varieties.

Since St Augustine is so high-maintenance and thirsty...if I have to resod anyway, it's sure as hell not going to be with St Augustine! I don't want to be a slave to my lawn. I'm told zoysia is low-maintenance relative to other monoculture grasses like Bermuda and St Augustine.
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Old 06-01-2014, 08:54 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,266,376 times
Reputation: 28402
Quote:
Originally Posted by MckinneyOwnr View Post
A pallet is 450 sq ft. A pallet of Zoysia costs $250 to $300 usually and is more expensive than the standard St Augustine or Bermuda, about double the cost. I paid $260 per pallet.

$400 installed is a pretty good price, especially if they warranty it in case it dies. I sodded my backyard myself, and you have to be fairly strong to be able to lift cut sod and move it around the yard. If I were to do it again, I'd probably pay to have it installed.

Zoysia carries a higher price because it's a much better grass than St Augustine or Bermuda. It's also more shade tolerant and it looks and feels fantastic. The trade off is that it's slow growing and costly.
I've laid sod before and it's backbreaking. The last lawn I laid was tiny in comparison to my yard here, so doing it myself isn't an option. I would need lots of help, and being a single gal I don't have a big strong dude to help. My few male friends wouldn't be any help; they're all busy, and a task like this is beyond the call of duty for a normal friendship!

The zoysia I've seen around here is gorgeous...lush, soft, with nice thin blades that look really comfy on bare feet. I've never cared for the texture of St. Augustine and I never go barefoot in the grass because it feels awful underfoot. The lawn was not in great shape when I bought the place five years ago and has been in steady decline ever since. I did all the things I was supposed to before our watering restrictions hit really hard. Even up to last year, I fertilized and put down pre-emergent when I was supposed to. Cut out sections and brought them to garden centers to get "expert" advice. Applied treatment after treatment that these "experts" recommended. Basically I've poured as much money and time into this lawn that I'm able to stand and I'm sick of wasting both.
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:14 AM
 
250 posts, read 280,355 times
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If you are not in a hurry to makeover your lawn, you can just start sprinkle zoysia seeds and mix it with some turf builder soil. Next spring you can just spray weed be gone on the St. Augustine when it start turning green. You should get a nice zoysia lawn in 2-3 years without breaking your back or your bank
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:24 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,266,376 times
Reputation: 28402
Quote:
Originally Posted by aznkobee View Post
If you are not in a hurry to makeover your lawn, you can just start sprinkle zoysia seeds and mix it with some turf builder soil. Next spring you can just spray weed be gone on the St. Augustine when it start turning green. You should get a nice zoysia lawn in 2-3 years without breaking your back or your bank
I thought about that, but talked to some neighbors who had gone the seeding route and none had satisfactory results.
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Old 06-01-2014, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Prosper
6,257 posts, read 13,496,911 times
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Zoysia seeds won't take. They grow far too slowly to be able to fight off more aggressive grasses and weeds. My grass was delivered in pretty bad shape, and in between that and my dog tearing it up, I still have patches a year later that haven't grown in fully. But, in the areas where I got a good piece of sod down and didn't have the dog tearing it up, it grows so dense and thick that it chokes out weeds from growing.
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Old 06-02-2014, 05:44 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,266,376 times
Reputation: 28402
Quote:
Originally Posted by MckinneyOwnr View Post
Zoysia seeds won't take. They grow far too slowly to be able to fight off more aggressive grasses and weeds. My grass was delivered in pretty bad shape, and in between that and my dog tearing it up, I still have patches a year later that haven't grown in fully. But, in the areas where I got a good piece of sod down and didn't have the dog tearing it up, it grows so dense and thick that it chokes out weeds from growing.
That's good to hear. Thanks.

So...has anyone had this done by professional landscapers? Any companies to recommend so I can get some competing quotes?
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Old 06-02-2014, 08:18 AM
 
Location: garland
1,595 posts, read 1,821,167 times
Reputation: 1998
I'm following this with interest as well. I'm really close to you and have the same issue.
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