The apomictic breeding behavior of Poa pratensis L. provides an opportunity to study many unique genotypes that can vary dramatically in characteristics such as disease resistance, stress tolerance and growth habit. The classification of Kentucky bluegrass into types is based on common growth and stress performance characteristics gathered from field turf trials. These classification types include the Compact, Bellevue, Mid-Atlantic, BVMG (`Baron, `Victa', `Merit', and `Gnome'), Common, and Aggressive types. A spaced-plant nursery trial was established in May 1996 to quantify morphological and growth characteristics of 45 cultivars and selections representing the major types of Kentucky bluegrass. Plant height, panicle height, flag leaf height and length, subtending leaf length and width, rhizome spread, and longest extending rhizome were measured 10 days after anthesis. Compact type cultivars had a lower, more prostrate growth habit than the Common, Mid-Atlantic, and Bellevue types. Mid-Atlantic type cultivars had a wider rhizome spread than Compact type cultivars. Principal component analysis of morphological measurements made on spaced-plants supports the classification types of the Common, Compact, Bellevue, Mid-Atlantic, and BVMG, but not necessarily the Aggressive type.
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