home UConn college extension
TEACHING RESEARCH EXTENSION
 
News
Fescues getting favorable environmental attention 

By Ron Hall

STORRS, CT An ambitious program investigating the potential for turf-type tall fescues and fine-leaf fescues to play a greater role in preserving water quality and also conserving water is getting high marks in Connecticut.

In fact, what researchers are learning about these two species in regards to producing acceptable-quality lawns and parks with less irrigation and fewer nutrient inputs (at least compared to other popular cool-season grasses) is starting to attract favorable attention from state and regional environmental agencies.

Read entire article here.
permalink related link
In The Field: June 30, 2007 

Our first week of HOT weather departed as quickly as it arrived. Recent samples arriving into the diagnostic center varied depending on the location in New England. In Maine, brown ring patch is still active and causing minor problems for some superintendents. In the extreme southern portions of New England and parts of New York, fairy ring is beginning to appear and the hot weather diseases have made a brief appearance.

Diseases such as Pythium blight and brown patch caused by Rhizoctonia zeae are beginning to develop. No reports of the traditional brown patch have been reported in our lab, but for those of you in the warmer parts of New England, July 4th is usually the time to look out for this disease. Very few cases of summer patch have been reported, but disease incidence is increasing. Anthracnose seems to be in limbo right now as those courses dealing with the early season type of the disease are seeing recovery, while those who traditionally see damage during the summer months are still waiting for the disease to begin.

The major concerns throughout the region are the apparent record numbers of annual bluegrass weevils. According to UMASS entomologist Pat Vittum, "We have seen the highest populations in at least 20 years on virtually every golf course in the Northeast." Click here to read Dr. Vittum's latest insect report...it sounds like it could be a long summer for these pests.

Dollar spot continues to be severe throughout the Northeast and the mild temperatures forecasted for much of early July should make collecting those dollar spot samples for UConn's Dollar Spot Resistance research a snap. If you don't have any dollar spot, please help us by putting down a small (6" x 6") board on a portion of your putting green and fairway prior to your next spray.
permalink related link
In The Field: June 21, 2007 

Based on samples arriving to the lab this week, Pythium blight, brown patch (caused by Rhizoctonia zeae), and anthracnose are active throughout the region. These diseases can cause severe damage in a relatively short period of time, so preventive applications of an effective fungicide are warranted. Caution should be used when treating for R. zeae as some traditional brown patch fungicides (e.g., thiophanate-methyl) may be ineffective.

Although less widespread than in recent years, anthracnose basal rot has caused significiant damage to select golf courses in the region. Fungicide trials over the last two years at courses in Greenwich, CT have revealed considerable differences in fungicide efficacy. Results of these two studies suggest that selecting an effective fungicide for your course will take some local knowledge. While the QoI's tested in 2006 provided little to no control, they provided the greatest level of suppression in the 2007 study. The two studies were conducted on golf courses only a couple of miles apart.

Finally, remember to assist us in our dollar spot research by sending in dollar spot samples from putting greens and fairways. If dollar spot is not appearing on your course, go the extra step and place a small board (6" x 6") on the back of your putting green or fairway prior to your next spray. Results of this study will assist in determing the level and type of fungicide resistance prevalent in New England.
permalink related link
SEND YOUR SAMPLES to Support Dollar Spot Research 

By John Kaminski

Funded by the New England Regional Turfgrass Foundation, Syngenta Crop Protection and the United States Golf Association, researchers at the University of Connecticut are investigating various aspects of managing dollar spot. Research will focus on improving fungicide efficacy through the proper selection of nozzle-types (see the June 2006 issue of GCM for more information) as well as through unconventional application timings.

In addition to developing improved management strategies, researchers will seek to determine the importance and scope of pathogen resistance to fungicides commonly used to control dollar spot. To participate in this component of the project, please send dollar spot samples from fairways and/or greens to the University of Connecticut (dollar spot samples submitted during the study will not be charged a diagnostic fee).

UCONN Turfgrass Disease Diagnostic Center
c/o John Kaminski
University of Connecticut
1376 Storrs Road, Unit 4067
Storrs, CT 06269

For more information on this research project or disease diagnostic services at UConn, please contact John Kaminski (860.486.0162 or john.kaminski@uconn.edu).
permalink related link
UConn Turfgrass Research Featured on TurfNetTV 

The University of Connecticut's Turfgrass Science Program is featured this month on TurfNetTV. Filmed in February, TurfNetTV visited UConn's Turfgrass Research Facility and discussed current nozzle research with John Kaminski, Assistant Professor of Turfgrass Pathology.

Highlights of the interview include an overview of the Turfgrass and Soil Science Program initiated by Dr. Karl Guillard back in 1998 and its rapid growth in recent years. Dr. Kaminski discusses the growth of the University's Turf Program over the last few years incuding the hiring of three new faculty members, the construction of a new Turfgrass Resource Unit, and the expansion of field and research plots at the Plant Science Research and Education Facility.

Results of an ongoing study conducted in a collaborative research effort with Dr. Michael Fidanza, Associate Professor of Horticulture at Penn State Berks and Dr. Kaminski are also featured. Ongoing research has focused on the proper selection of nozzle types in an effort to improve fungicide efficacy for controlling dollar spot of golf courses. Dollar spot, a foliar disease caused by the pathogen Sclerotinia homoeocarpa, is one of the most common and chronic diseases found on golf courses in the United States. Results from this ongoing study found that disease suppression can be improved with proper nozzle selection. Although more research is needed, potential benefits include a reduction the overall quanitity of pesticides used to suppress dollar spot and a reduction in application interval.

It is clearly an exciting time of growth and expansion in Storrs. To find out more about the UConn Turfgrass and Soil Science Program, please visit our www.turf.uconn.edu.

Click here to view the video.
permalink related link

Next