New turfgrass specialist begins at Texas A&M

by Gabe Saldana, Texas A&M AgriLife

Efficient varieties and informed management practices can help Texans make the most of turfgrasses’ natural human health and environmental benefits, said the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s new turfgrass specialist.

Dr. Lindsey Hoffman assumed her post at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas July 9. She said her public outreach initiatives will deliver holistic approaches for coaxing maximum benefit from turfgrass use. Continue reading

New newsletter has helpful tips to keep your lawn looking great

The Texas A&M AgriLife Texas Lawn Companion is a new newsletter with tips for homeowners, golf course administrators, school administrators and others who manage any type of turfgrass. In the first quarterly edition of the newsletter, editor Becky Grubbs includes articles on the following topics: Continue reading

Summer Management Considerations for School Sports Fields

by Becky Grubbs, Texas A&M AgriLife

Summer management for both active and inactive sports fields is critical to maintaining healthy, safe fields year-round. Even just light maintenance can make a huge difference in what is possible when school starts again in the fall. The tips below apply to all kinds of turf, from sports fields to golf courses to home lawns.

Irrigation

To prevent surface hardness from creeping up to dangerous levels, regular irrigation is important – even for those fields that remain otherwise inactive during summer months. In many parts of the state where fields are constructed atop our trademark “shrinking and swelling” clays, the lack of irrigation can result in significant cracks in the field surface by the time football season is upon us. It can take a considerable amount of time and water to properly re-saturate the fields and bring them back to a safe surface capable of supporting healthy vegetation. Deep watering even once a week during dry periods can prevent this. Water early in the morning. This will optimize water use and prevent disease on your fields as fall approaches. Monitor and correct any malfunctioning irrigation. Uniform coverage will prevent dry spots where soil will harden and pests will move in. Consider a catch can audit. Continue reading

Turfgrass short course to be offered in College Station, TX Jan. 17-20

by Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife

An intensive four-day Turfgrass Ecology and Management Short Course will be presented by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Jan. 17-20 on the Texas A&M University campus in College Station.

Dr. Casey Reynolds, AgriLife Extension turfgrass specialist in College Station, will present the educational workshop for anyone interested in the fundamentals of turfgrass physiology and management. Continue reading

Native Grasses as an Alternative to Turfgrasses in Out-of-Play Areas on Golf Courses

By Gerald S. Burgner, MLA and Danesha Seth Carley, PhD, NC State University

In the past few years, turfgrass researchers have been interested in native grasses as a replacement for some managed turfgrass areas. Traditional turfgrasses generally require more resources, especially on home lawns and golf courses. Typically, native grasses require less fertilization, are more drought tolerant, and are more disease and insect resistant. Severe droughts over the past few years have increased the public’s awareness of and requests for low-input turf-type grasses. Fortunately, continued breeding and wider-spread use of native grasses have led to the production of high quality native grasses that can stand up to the expectations of golf course superintendents and homeowners. Continue reading

North Carolina turfgrass field day in August

N.C. State University’s annual Turfgrass Field Day will be held in Raleigh at the Lake Wheeler Turfgrass Research Lab, Aug. 13, 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. One of the largest events of its kind in the country, the field day offers the industry and general public a chance to view the Turfgrass Program’s ongoing research trials and speak directly with N.C. State faculty and staff.

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Troublesome bermudagrass stem maggot finds Kentucky

In Southeast Farm Press

The bermudagrass stem maggot is now in Kentucky.

It can cause yield damage and quality losses in bermudagrass pastures and hay fields, and farmers there need to be watching for it in 2014.

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