Nara Native Turf
All Purpose Native Turf
Scientific name : Zoysia macrantha 'MAC03
Nara native turf is a great all purpose turf that can handle many conditions. It is the only general native turf. The only other native turf is Dryarna, but it is only grown for drainage channels because it only survives in or next to shallow water. Unlike Nara, Dryarna is not suitable for general turf areas. Nara is the perfect compliment for any native garden or landscape.
Nara's Salt Tolerance
Nara is a low maintenance grass that is naturally very drought tolerant. It is generally a coastal grass but has been proven to work well many hundreds of kilometres inland. Common Zoysia macrantha is very salt tolerant, so it is no surprise that Nara has this quality as well, although Nara is better watered with fresh water when possible.
In tests, Nara had much more salt tolerance than Empire, which is known for its excellent salt tolerance in comparison to other grasses. When Nara was tested and compared to a selection of common Zoysia macrantha types in breeding, it had salt tolerance at the mid to lower end of the species. Not as high as some, but still much higher than Couch, Buffalo and Empire. This is only important because people need to know it cannot handle growing in sea water. However, growing close to the beach or on waterfront properties is not a problem.
Super Drought Tolerant Native Turf
In drought studies, Zoysia macrantha was found to be more drought tolerant than Buffalo and Couch turf. With Nara being the first and only commercial Zoysia macrantha, this is great news for anyone needing an extremely drought tolerant native turf.
Broad leaf Carpet Grass and Sweet Smother Grass were relatively drought sensitive and Marine Couch, Sporobolous virginicus, Sand Couch and Zoysia macrantha were relatively drought tolerant. The Bermuda (Couch), Queensland Blue Couch and Buffalo grasses had intermediate drought tolerance.*
*Information from Water Use Studies for Management of Subtropical C4 Turf Grasses in Dryland and Irrigated Urban Open Space. Released by Horticulture Australia and Queensland Department of Primary Industries.
Installing Nara Native Turf
Nara prefers to be installed when the weather is not too cold. Nara can be layed anytime of the year in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Ipswich, and the Sunshine Coast. This is the same for all Zoysia types.
The first year after laying Nara, it will seed quite a lot. The second year it settles down, provided you fertilise in spring. It will generally have a burst of seed in early spring and won't seed for the rest of the year. This is a distinct advantage, as Nara will only need more mowing in early spring to remove seed head, compared to Couch and Buffalos that will need mowing to remove seed head at many times of the year.
Benefits of Nara
As discovered by the breeder
- Based on research and observations Nara will need about 20% less mowing than Buffalo, 30% less than Couch and 45% less than Kikuyu. It is faster growing than Empire Zoysia.
- It requires only one fertilise per year. It is a Zoysia macrantha, which is only found in Australia. Overseas Zoysia types such as Empire (a japonica type) also only require once a year fertilising. If they are subject to a lot of wear twice a year fertilising is recommended on all Zoysia.
- Nara can be mown exactly how you would mow Couch, Kikuyu or Buffalo. Short, medium or long. In general it is better to not mow too short as it stresses all lawns, especially in drought.
- Nara is very good at competing with weeds. You can also use any chemical that works on Couch. Nara is much better than Buffalo with chemicals as you can, for example, take out Paspalum with a selective spray.
- Buffalo works in 65-70% shade. Nara works in 50-55% shade. Couch and Kikuyu only work in 20-25% shade.
- Nara is beautiful. It is a fine textured lawn, but scalps less than Couch when mown. People choose it over Couch, Kikuyu and Buffalo on looks alone.
- Nara requires less garden edging than Buffalo, Couch and Kikuyu, making it less invasive for the garden, although Empire Zoysia does require slightly less edging than Nara native turf.
- Better winter colour than Couch and many Buffalo types. Nara browns of quicker than Palmetto, Sapphire and Kikuyu which are well known for their excellent winter colour. In Western Sydney at Richmond this year it was dormant for about 7 weeks. So there a few grasses that have better winter colour, but compared to many it is better.
- It has better wear tolerance than Buffalo, Couch and Kikuyu in full sun, although Couch and Kikuyu recover better from wear as they grow faster. In semi shade Nara has better wear tolerance than Couch and Kikuyu.
- Nara has vigorous deep rhizomes, it is far more drought tolerant than non rhizome grasses such as Buffalo. Buffalo will hold its colour in drought a few days longer than the Nara, but will die much quicker in a hot prolonged dry spell. Nara has developed extreme drought tolerance from its parentage. Millions of years growing in Australia's hot, dry and humid climates has made it a real survivor.
- It is native to Australia, from northern Queensland all the way down to Tasmania, to the centre of Australia and Adelaide. Zoysia macrantha is well suited to most parts including Perth, where it has performed very well, making it ideal for your local Australian lawn. We are currently releasing it in the USA as well. It performs very well there, and is admired for its beauty. Nara is well adapted for all parts of Australia, except the Alpine regions, although it can handle down to Minus 12 degrees Celsius in USA tests, which is colder than Canberra.
- Nara rarely gets disease, and copes very well with humid and dry climates. In colder areas and wet winters like many grasses, it can occasionally develop a small sign of rust, but this is generally hidden amongst the leaves of a mature lawn. Nara hides rust much better than many other types, so it is a safe choice. Nara seems to cope well with our bugs and insects, probably because it built up immunity over the millions of years of development as a native species of Australia. A few introduced pest species and the odd native one may cause problems occasionally. Nara seems to be far more resistant to black beetle, army worm and web worm than Couch, Kikuyu and Buffalo. Resistant does not mean immune, so it can sometimes get munched on. Again, because it has rhizomes, it will re-grow better than Buffalo.