Best Pre-Emergent Weed Control for a Zoysia Grass Lawn

A beautiful, weed-free Zoysia grass lawn is the envy of every homeowner. Pre-emergents work to eliminate weeds before they happen. But what is the best pre-emergent for zoysia grass?

For Zoysia grass, the best pre-emergent weed killers are:

  • Fertilome Crabgrass Preventer with Dimension
  • Dimension 2EW Herbicide
  • The Andersons Barricade Professional-Grade Granular Pre-Emergent Weed Control
  • Quali-Pro Prodiamine, Pre-Emergent Herbicide, Granules
  • Yard Mastery Dithiopyr Pre-Emergent Herbicide with Fertilizer

But don’t worry, I get into the details and pros and cons of each down below.

However, the best choice can vary based on local conditions and target weeds. And it’s vital to consider the grass’s growth stage, local climate, and specific weed challenges when selecting a product.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the best weed killer for Zoysia grass, optimal application times, and key maintenance tips to help you nurture a lush, healthy lawn that will be the talk of the neighborhood and get you the look of golf courses.

Key Takeaways

  • Top pre-emergent herbicides for Zoysia grass have been selected based on performance, usability, and cost-effectiveness.
  • The optimal application period is when temperatures are just below 55F in the fall/early spring. Granular or liquid applications can be used depending on the circumstances.
  • Proper maintenance such as soil drainage, aeration, fertilization, and thatch removal must be done to maintain a healthy lawn free of weed infestations.

Top Pre-Emergent Herbicides for Zoysia Grass

Protecting your Zoysia grass lawn from invasive weeds starts with selecting the right pre-emergent herbicide. The top pre-emergent herbicides for Zoysia grass have been carefully selected based on their performance, usability, and cost-effectiveness.

Using these herbicides can safeguard your southern lawn from grassy weeds and help thin areas of lawn survive winter and recover in the spring.

Here are the top choices for pre-emergent weed preventers and killers for a Zoysia lawn:

1. Dimension 2EW Herbicide

Use: Dimension 2EW is a specialized pre-emergent herbicide. Its primary purpose is to prevent the germination of a broad spectrum of grassy and broadleaf weeds. It can be applied to both established lawns and ornamental areas, offering flexibility in its application.


  1. Broad Spectrum: It’s effective against a wide range of weeds.
  2. Flexible Application: Can be applied to various landscapes, not just lawns.
  3. Concentrated Formula: The half-gallon size can cover a substantial area, making it cost-effective for larger properties.


  1. Chemical-based: This is a synthetic herbicide, which might not align with the preferences of those seeking organic solutions.
  2. Potential Overuse: Being a concentrated formula, there’s a risk of applying too much if not diluted correctly, potentially harming the lawn or plants.
  3. Special Handling: As with many herbicides, proper handling, storage, and application methods are crucial to avoid unintended environmental impacts.

Why buy for Zoysia lawn: Zoysia, being a dense-growing grass, benefits from a weed-free environment to fully thrive. Dimension 2EW not only helps prevent common weeds but, with its broad-spectrum formula, ensures that a variety of unwanted plants are kept at bay.

This herbicide ensures that the Zoysia lawn remains pristine and free from invasive species, allowing its beauty to shine through.

2. Ferti-Lome Broadleaf Weed Preventer

Use: This product is designed as a pre-emergent herbicide and fertilizer. It aims to prevent crabgrass and other weeds from germinating while also providing nutrients (20-0-3 indicates 20% nitrogen, 0% phosphorus, and 3% potassium) to promote lawn growth.


  1. Dual-action: It prevents weeds and nourishes the grass simultaneously.
  2. Specific formula: The nitrogen-rich mix can promote rapid green-up of lawns.
  3. It contains Dimension, a proven effective pre-emergent herbicide.


  1. Chemical-based: Not organic, which might be a concern for eco-conscious individuals.
  2. Requires precise application: Overuse can burn or damage lawns.
  3. Might not combat post-emergent or mature weeds.

Why buy for Zoysia lawn: Zoysia grass, while hardy and beautiful, competes with weeds like crabgrass. Using a pre-emergent specifically designed to target these weeds can help maintain the lawn’s aesthetics. The added fertilizer supports Zoysia’s growth, ensuring a thick, lush appearance.

3. The Anderson’s Barricade

Use: The Andersons Barricade is a professional-grade granular pre-emergent herbicide. Its main function is to provide a barrier against weed seeds, inhibiting their germination before they start. It’s designed for broad-spectrum weed control and can be applied to various types of turfs, including Zoysia.


  1. Granular Formulation: Easier and more uniform application, especially for homeowners without specialized equipment.
  2. Broad-Spectrum Control: Effective against numerous types of weeds.
  3. Wide Coverage: The 18 lb bag can treat up to 5,800 sq ft, ideal for medium to large lawns.


  1. Chemical-based: Not an organic solution, which may not suit environmentally conscious users.
  2. Timing is Key: As with most pre-emergents, it’s crucial to apply at the right time, or its effectiveness can be diminished.
  3. Watering Requirement: The product often requires watering-in post-application to activate.

Why buy for Zoysia lawn: Zoysia grass is known for its dense growth and attractive appearance. Using The Andersons Barricade can ensure that this grass type remains uninterrupted by unsightly weeds. The granular formulation allows for an even spread, ensuring that every inch of a Zoysia lawn gets protection against invasive weeds.

This pre-emergent helps maintain the lawn’s aesthetic and health by preventing competition from unwanted plants.

4. Quali-Pro Prodiamine

Use: Quali-Pro Prodiamine is a pre-emergent herbicide in granular form that is designed to inhibit weed seed germination and growth before they sprout. It’s formulated to offer season-long control over various weed types and is suitable for use on many turfgrass varieties, including Zoysia.


  1. Long-Lasting Control: Provides season-long weed protection, which means fewer applications throughout the year.
  2. Flexible Application Windows: This can be applied in both the fall and spring, catering to different types of weeds and their life cycles.
  3. Selective Action: Targets a wide variety of weeds without damaging desirable turfgrasses.


  1. Chemical Nature: Not an organic solution, and might be a concern for those preferring natural lawn care products.
  2. Proper Application Required: Over-application can damage the lawn, while under-application might be ineffective.
  3. Granular Care: As granules, they need to be spread evenly to ensure thorough coverage and might require watering-in to activate.

Why buy for Zoysia lawn: Zoysia is a dense and lush grass type that benefits from a weed-free environment. Using Quali-Pro Prodiamine ensures that Zoysia lawns remain pristine by preventing the emergence of invasive weeds. The ability to provide season-long protection means Zoysia can grow thick and robust without competition.

The product’s selective nature ensures that while weeds are targeted, the Zoysia grass remains unharmed.

5. Yard Mastery Dithiopyr Pre-Emergent Herbicide with Fertilizer

Use: Yard Mastery’s Dithiopyr Pre-Emergent Herbicide is a dual-purpose product, designed both to prevent weed seed germination and to provide turfgrass with beneficial nutrients. Targeting crabgrass, annual bluegrass (POA annua), and other broadleaf weeds, this herbicide also boasts a 7% potash composition for aiding in stress recovery of the lawn.


  1. Dual-Function: Acts as both a weed inhibitor and a grass nutrient supplier, ensuring comprehensive lawn care.
  2. Stress Recovery: The 7% potash aids in recovering from stress, which can be crucial after adverse weather conditions.
  3. Broad Spectrum Control: Effective against a variety of weeds, including crabgrass and POA annua.


  1. Chemical Composition: Not a natural or organic option, which might deter environmentally-conscious homeowners.
  2. Application Timing: To maximize efficiency, users need to ensure proper timing based on the weed’s lifecycle.
  3. Specific Formulation: The 0-0-7 nutrient formulation may not cater to lawns needing nitrogen or phosphorus.

Why buy for Zoysia lawn: Zoysia grass, known for its lush and dense growth, thrives when competition from weeds is minimized. The Yard Mastery Dithiopyr Pre-Emergent Herbicide not only prevents the emergence of common weeds but also feeds the Zoysia with potash. This nutrient aids in stress recovery, ensuring the Zoysia remains resilient and vibrant through various challenges.

Given its dual benefits, it can be a valuable addition to a comprehensive Zoysia lawn care routine.

What is Better to Prevent Weeds on a Lawn: Liquid Herbicide or Granular?

When it comes to preventing lawn weeds, there are two different types of herbicides; a liquid herbicide and a granular one. Both have their unique sets of advantages and challenges. Let’s dive into the details.

Liquid Herbicides:


  1. Precision: Liquid herbicides offer more control in their application. You can target specific spots with ease, ensuring that only the areas infested with weeds are treated.
  2. Quick Absorption: Liquid formulations tend to be absorbed faster by weeds, which can lead to quicker results.
  3. Mix Flexibility: Depending on the weed problem, you can often adjust the concentration, tailoring the mixture to your lawn’s specific needs.


  1. Application Complexity: They often require a sprayer, which, if not used properly, can lead to uneven application or drift, potentially harming desired plants.
  2. Frequency: Generally, liquid treatments might need to be applied more frequently than granular ones.

Granular Herbicides:


  1. Ease of Use: Just spread them across your lawn using a spreader, ensuring even distribution.
  2. Time-Release: Many granular products have a slow-release mechanism. They can provide prolonged protection against weeds, reducing the number of applications per year.
  3. Less Drift Risk: There’s minimal risk of the product drifting to non-target areas compared to a liquid spray.


  1. Water Dependency: For granules to be effective, they often need an inch of water (either from rainfall or a sprinkler) post-application to dissolve and penetrate the soil.
  2. Less Immediate: While they’re effective, granular herbicides can take a bit longer to show results as they need time to break down.

So, which is better?

If you’re after quick results and have the equipment, liquid might be the way to go. But if you want a more straightforward, longer-lasting solution and don’t mind waiting a bit for results, granular could be your best bet.

Both methods, when used correctly, can give your lawn the weed-free look you’re striving for.

When and How to Apply Pre-Emergent Herbicides on Zoysia Grass

Applying pre-emergent herbicides to Zoysia grass plays a pivotal role in hindering weed development and nurturing healthy lawn growth. Choosing the right pre-emergent product and applying it at the correct time can make all the difference in your lawn’s appearance and health.

This section delves into the ideal timing and application methods for pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass, covering both granular and liquid options.

Optimal Application Periods

As a general rule, to achieve the best results, the best time to apply pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass is in late fall and early spring (such as late April) when temperatures are just below 55F. This is the time when many common weed species initiate seed production and germination.

Of course, different parts of the country can have radically different temperatures, so early fall or late winter might be better in some areas.

Monitoring soil temperature with a soil thermometer is crucial in determining the ideal time for application. Applying pre-emergents during these periods will provide maximum protection against weed growth and ensure a more aesthetically pleasing lawn in the summer months.

Proper Watering and Mowing Practices

Maximizing the effectiveness of pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass hinges on proper watering and mowing practices. It is recommended to avoid mowing for three days before and two days after applying pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass.

Additionally, ensure your lawn receives adequate water following the application of herbicides, as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Proper lawn care practices not only help the pre-emergent herbicides to work effectively, but also contribute to the overall health and appearance of your Zoysia grass lawn.

Safety Precautions When Applying Chemicals to Your Lawn

Tending to your lawn with chemicals? Liquid chemicals that require a sprayer require the most protection. But make sure you are smart with granular lawn chemicals too.

Safety first! Always read the product label; it’s not just legalese – it’s vital info.

Protective Gear:

  • gloves
  • long sleeves
  • protective eyewear
  • ventilator

Avoid windy days to keep sprays and powders on target and off you.

Keep pets and kiddos inside until your lawn’s dry or as advised on the label. Store chemicals securely, out of reach from curious hands or paws. And after you’ve played lawn chemist, wash up, especially before eating or touching your face. A beautiful lawn shouldn’t come at the cost of your well-being.

What Are the Most Common Weeds in Zoysia Grass?

Zoysia grass can be susceptible to various types of weeds, including broadleaf and grassy weeds. It is essential to identify and address these common weeds to maintain healthy and visually appealing zoysia lawns.

This section focuses on dealing with some of the most common weeds in Zoysia grass, such as crabgrass, goosegrass, dallisgrass, and broadleaf weeds.

Crabgrass, Goosegrass, and Dallisgrass

Crabgrass, goosegrass, and dallisgrass are some of the most common weeds found in Zoysia grass. Applying pre-emergent herbicides, such as Dimension 2EW, Prodiamine 65 WDG, and Crabgrass Control Plus 0-0-7 with 0.37% Prodiamine, can effectively prevent the growth of these grassy weeds.

Timely application of these pre-emergent herbicides, along with the use of post-emergence herbicides when needed, effectively curtails the growth of these common grassy weeds, helping maintain a healthy, flourishing Zoysia grass lawn through pre-emergence weed control.

Broadleaf Weeds

Dandelions and clover are two common broadleaf weeds that can be found in Zoysia grass lawns. These weeds compete with the grass for nutrients, light and space, thus reducing its quality. To control these weeds, use selective herbicides, such as SpeedZone Broadleaf Herbicide for Turf, which is specifically designed to target broadleaf weeds without harming your Zoysia grass.

Proper lawn maintenance, such as adequate watering, mowing, and fertilization, can also help prevent the growth of broadleaf weeds and ensure the overall health of your Zoysia grass lawn.

How to Maintain a Healthy Zoysia Grass Lawn

A healthy Zoysia grass lawn is not only visually appealing but also more resistant to weed infestations. By focusing on the following practices, you can maintain a healthy lawn that will naturally inhibit weed growth.

  • Soil drainage
  • Aeration
  • Fertilization
  • Thatch removal

This section will delve into maintaining a healthy Zoysia grass lawn and averting weed infestations through appropriate lawn care practices.

Soil Drainage and Aeration

Promoting healthy growth and warding off weed infestations in your Zoysia grass lawn necessitates improving soil drainage and aeration. Enhancing soil drainage and aeration can be accomplished by aerating the soil, incorporating organic matter, and improving the soil structure.

In addition, avoid compaction, maintain a proper mowing height, and avoid over-watering to ensure soil drainage and aeration are maintained.

Fertilization and Thatch Removal

To maintain the health of your Zoysia grass lawn and prevent weed growth, regular fertilization, and thatch removal are indispensable. Fertilizing Zoysia grass helps it form a dense, thick layer above the soil surface, reducing the available space for weeds.

Consider using a reputable fertilizer program, such as the Lawnifi Fertilizer Program from Amazon, to ensure your lawn receives the necessary nutrients. Thatch removal promotes healthy root growth and prevents weed seeds from taking hold in your lawn.

Are There Natural Weed Control Product Alternatives?

Thankfully, for those looking to avoid harsh chemical herbicides, there are natural alternatives to the harsh chemicals typically found in weed killers.

And these can be particularly beneficial for those nurturing Zoysia grass. Let’s dive right into some environmentally friendly options that won’t leave your lawn compromised.

  1. Corn Gluten Meal: Originally a byproduct of corn milling, this substance acts as a pre-emergent. When applied to the lawn, it prevents weed seeds from establishing roots. Plus, it’s organic and doubles as a nitrogen source, promoting lush grass growth.
  2. Vinegar: A staple in most kitchens, vinegar contains acetic acid, which can dry out and kill young weeds. Simply spray some white or apple cider vinegar directly on the weed’s leaves. Keep in mind, that it’s non-selective and might harm desired plants too, so apply with precision!
  3. Boiling Water: The simplicity of this method might surprise you! Pouring boiling water on weeds causes cellular damage, effectively killing them. It’s a great spot-treatment method, especially for those pesky weeds sprouting in driveway cracks or garden beds. However, it may harm your grass too, so it’s best to apply this to weeds between pavers or in places where it’s not in the grass.
  4. Salt: A pinch of salt at the base of weeds dehydrates and kills them. But be cautious: too much salt can harm your Zoysia and negatively impact the soil.
  5. Essential Oils: Some oils, like clove and cinnamon, can deter weeds. Mix a few drops with water and spray it directly onto the undesired weeds.
  6. Frequent Mowing: Keeping your Zoysia grass at its optimal height can naturally overshadow and crowd out emerging weeds.

Remember, while these methods are gentler on the environment, they may require more frequent application than their chemical counterparts. Always monitor your lawn’s response to ensure you’re achieving the desired results without harming your precious Zoysia.


In conclusion, maintaining a healthy Zoysia grass lawn is key to preventing weed infestations and ensuring a beautiful, lush landscape.

By using a selective pre-emergent herbicide, such as Dimension 2EW, Ferti-Lome Broadleaf Weed Control, and The Andersons Barricade, and applying them at the appropriate times, you can effectively prevent the growth of common weeds.

Additionally, proper lawn care practices, such as soil drainage and aeration, fertilization, and thatch removal, contribute to the overall health of your Zoysia grass lawn.

By following these tips, you will be well on your way to nurturing a thriving, weed-free Zoysia grass lawn.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you spray 2 4 D on zoysia grass?

It is safe to spray 2,4-D on zoysia grass after the week to ten-day period when it is just breaking dormancy.

Hi-Yield 2,4-D Selective Weed Killer on Amazon should be used as directed and up to 1 gallon in 15 gallons of water per Acre is recommended for best results.

What do you put on zoysia in early spring?

Early spring is a great time to feed and protect your Zoysia lawn with weed and feed products that contain pre-emergent herbicides. This will help stop weeds from taking root and becoming a problem later on.

Pre-emergent herbicides also work to protect against germination of weed seeds.

How do you cut zoysia grass?

Zoysia grass is a dream for many homeowners due to its lush appearance.

When it’s time to mow, aim for a height of about 1 to 2 inches. A sharp mower blade is essential, ensuring clean cuts and preventing the grass from tearing.

Mowing in alternating patterns each time prevents soil compaction and encourages even growth. Be attentive to your lawn’s growth rate; during peak growing season, you might mow weekly. However, don’t remove more than one-third of the blade height in a single session.

Lastly, occasional dethatching helps Zoysia breathe and absorb nutrients effectively.

When is the optimal time to apply pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass?

For optimal control, apply pre-emergent herbicides on Zoysia grass in late spring and fall when weeds are likely to germinate.

This will help prevent the growth of weeds and keep your lawn looking its best.

What’s the difference between a post-emergent herbicide and preemergence herbicides?

Pre-emergence herbicides are the proactive bunch; you apply them before weed seeds germinate.

They create a protective barrier in the soil, preventing those pesky seedlings from breaking through. On the flip side, post-emergent herbicides are your reactive solution. Once those unwanted weeds have made their grand entrance and are visibly growing, you bring in the post-emergent cavalry to take them down.

In essence, pre-emergent products stop weeds before they start, while post-emergent ones tackle them head-on after they’ve sprouted. Both are essential tools in maintaining a pristine lawn.

Herbicide Spraying Demonstration by City of Greenville, North Carolina, Weeds51 by USDA NRCS Montana, Large crabgrass by NY State IPM Program at Cornell University, and Rose Creek | 17204 Kingfisher Way Edmond OK by Bill Wilson are licensed under CC2.0.

Middle Class Dad is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases if you click to Amazon from my site and choose to make a purchase. This is no way increases the cost to you.

2 thoughts on “Best Pre-Emergent Weed Control for a Zoysia Grass Lawn

  1. I live in San Antonio, TX and my Zoysia lawn is already starting to green up. I want to use a pre-emergent without harming the grass what do you prefer. We are alrady hetting the 80 degree mark so I’m sure the ground temp is getting up there. I had crabgrass bad last year and spent a large amount of time hand pulling.

    1. Hi Steve

      My first suggestion would be The Andersons Barricade Professional-Grade Granular Pre-Emergent Weed Control (here it is on Amazon – It works well for Texas and shouldn’t harm zoysia. Now is the time to apply it! As you probably know, mow first, then apply and then water. Use a leaf blower or broom if you get any on walkways.

      Hope that helps!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Top Related Posts