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Gregg C. Munshaw, Jeffery S. Beasley, Christian M. Baldwin, Justin Q. Moss, Kenneth L. Cropper, H. Wayne Philley, Chrissie A. Segars, and Barry R. Stewart

Bermudagrass ( Cynodon sp.) is widely grown throughout the southern United States for recreational and aesthetic purposes. Bermudagrass provides a heat- and drought-tolerant turfgrass that exhibits vigorous growth and good wear tolerance

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Hassan Salehi, Zahra Seddighi, Alexandra N. Kravchenko, and Mariam B. Sticklen

The authors wish to thank Dr. I. Altosaar of the Univ. of Ottawa for providing the strain of Agrobacterium containing pKUC, Dr. C. Taliaferro of Oklahoma State Univ. for the Cynodon seeds, and the USDA-ARS Corn Insects and Crop Genetics Research

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Ian R. Rodriguez, Grady L. Miller, and L.B. McCarty

For drainage, turfgrass is often established on sand-based soils, which are typically nutrient-deficient and require supplemental fertilization. The objective of this study was to determine the optimum N-P-K fertilizer ratio for establishing bermudagrass from sprigs in sand. `FloraDwarf' and `Tifdwarf' bermudagrasses [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. × C. transvaalensis Burt-Davy] were sprigged on a United States Golf Association (USGA) green [85 sand: 15 peat (v/v)] in Aug. 1996 at the Univ. of Florida's Envirogreen in Gainesville, Fla. `TifEagle' bermudagrass was sprigged on a USGA green [85 sand: 15 peat (v/v)] and `Tifway' bermudagrass [C. dactylon (L.) Pers.] was sprigged on native soil at Clemson Univ. in Clemson, S.C. in May 1999. Treatments consisted of fertilizer ratios of 1N-0P-0.8K, 1N-0P-1.7K, 1N-0.4P-0.8K, 1N-0.9P-0.8K, and 1N-1.3P-0.8K applied based on a N rate of 49 kg·ha-1/week for 7 weeks. Growth differences were apparent among cultivars. A 1N-0P-0.8K or 1N-0P-1.7K ratio is insufficient for optimum growth of bermudagrass during establishment, even when planted on a soil high in P. Increased coverage rate with additional P was optimized at a ratio of 1N-0.4P at all four sites. Increased coverage with P was greatest on the sand-based greens, probably due to the very low initial P levels of the soils. On two of the sand-based greens, P in excess of a 1N-0.4P ratio decreased coverage rate.

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Donald M. Vietor, Ronnie W. Schnell, Tony L. Provin, Richard H. White, and Clyde L. Munster

Incorporation or top-dressing of composted biosolids (CB) can enhance turfgrass establishment and sod properties at harvest, but soil phosphorus (P) and nitrogen must be managed to protect water quality. Alum treatment of CB could reduce soluble P concentrations in amended soil and limit runoff loss of P. The objective was to evaluate CB and Alum effects on turfgrass coverage of soil and runoff losses during ‘Tifway’ bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. var. dactylon × C. transvaalensis Burtt-Davey] establishment from sprigs or transplanted sod. Three replications of eight treatments comprised a complete randomized design. Four treatments were composed of ‘Tifway’ sprigged in soil with and without incorporation of CB and Alum. Four remaining treatments were sods harvested from ‘Tifway’ grown with and without top-dressed CB that were transplanted with and without a surface spray of Alum. Surface coverage of ‘Tifway’ sprigged in soil mixed with inorganic fertilizer or CB was comparable to transplanted sod 25 days after planting. In contrast, Alum incorporation acidulated soil, slowed coverage rates of sprigged ‘Tifway’, and increased NH4-N runoff loss during early establishment in treatments without CB. Incorporation of Alum with CB or inorganic fertilizer in soil before sprigging reduced soil water-extractable P (WEP) more than 38% and reduced runoff loss of soluble reactive P (SRP) in three of four establishment treatments. Although SRP runoff loss from CB-amended sod was greatest among treatments, the Alum spray minimized SRP loss after transplanting. Alum effectively reduced runoff loss of SRP from CB, soil, and turfgrass sources during establishment from sprigs or sod. Additional field research is needed, but incorporated or surface sprays of Alum offer a potential new practice for mitigating runoff loss of SRP from establishing turfgrass.

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Billy J. Johnson, Robert N. Carrow, and Tim R. Murphy

Field experiments were conducted to determine the effects of foliar iron (Fe) applied with postemergence herbicides on injury, color, and quality of `Tifway' bermudagrass [Cynodon transvaalensis Burtt-Davy × Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.]. Iron significantly decreased injury and improved quality and color of `Tifway' bermudagrass in conjunction with herbicide treatment. Turf injury was less for 4 to 18 days after the initial MSMA application when Fe was added. Injury was also less from sequential Fe treatment with MSMA + metribuzin (up to 4 days) and MSMA + imazaquin (from 4 to 10 days) compared to the respective herbicides applied alone. There was no difference in turf injury from Fe when imazaquin at 1.3 kg·ha-1 was applied as a single treatment. However, turf treated with Fe and two applications of imazaquin (9- to 10-day interval) recovered from herbicide injury faster than when treated only with the herbicide. Iron did not prevent immediate 2,4-D + mecoprop + dicamba injury to the bermudagrass, but did hasten turf recovery from injury at 26 days after treatment. With a few exceptions, `Tifway' bermudagrass quality was higher and color improved when Fe was added. However, injury expressed as loss of shoot density was not affected by Fe and only injury expressed as color loss was improved by Fe. Chemical names used: 3,6-dichloro-2-methoxybenzoic acid (dicamba), 2-[4,5-dihydro-4-methyl)-4-(1-methylethyl)-5-oxo-1H-imidazol-2yl]-3-quinolinecarboxylic acid (imazaquin), (±)-2-(4-chloro-2-methylphenoxy)propanoic acid (mecoprop), 4-amino-6-(1,1-dimethylethyl)-3-(methylthio)-1,2,4-triazin-5(4H)-one (metribuzin), monosodium salt of MAA (MSMA), and (2,4-dichlorophenoxy)acetic acid (2,4-D).

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Jason J. Goldman, Wayne W. Hanna, and Peggy Ozias-Akins

`TifEagle' (2n = 3x = 27) hybrid bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. (2n = 4x = 36) × Cynodon transvaalensis Burtt-Davy (2n = 2x = 18)] is an ultradwarf cultivar for greens, and `TifSport' (2n = 3x = 27) is a more versatile hybrid used on fairways, athletic fields, and lawns. To develope a transformation system and determine if somaclonal variation was present in regenerated plants, both cultivars were tested for their ability to produce embryogenic callus from which plants could be regenerated. Sliced nodes of both cultivars and immature inflorescences from `TifSport' were used as the explant sources. Cultures were initiated on Murashige and Skoog medium supplemented with 6.79 μm 2,4-D and 0.044 μm BA (`TifSport' and `TifEagle') or 6.79 μm 2,4-D plus 200 mg.L-1 casein hydrolysate (`TifSport'). In total, 51 plants were regenerated from callus of a single node of `TifEagle'. Nodes from `TifSport' did not produce embryogenic callus. In total, 29 plants were regenerated from callus of `TifSport' produced from immature inflorescences. These plants were grown in the field for at least one season, and 5-cm-diameter plugs were harvested, repotted in a greenhouse, and allowed to reestablish. Data on canopy height, leaf width, leaf length, and number of stolons were collected. Seven `TifEagle'-derived entries (14%) were not significantly different (α = 0.05) from `TifEagle' harvested from the breeder plot in Tifton, Ga., for all measured traits, and 41%, 24%, and 22% differed by one, two, or three measurements, respectively. Flow cytometry indicated that 33% (13 plants) of the `TifEagle' regenerants were hexaploid (2n = 6x = 54) and the rest remained triploid. One `TifSport' regenerant was significantly different (α = 0.05) for plant height.

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Billy J. Johnson


Two field experiments were initiated to determine the effects of herbicides on turfgrass quality and spring to summer transition from overseeded perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) back to ‘Tifway’ bermudagrass [Cynodon transvaalensis Burtt-Davy × Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.]. Pendimethalin applied at 3.3 kg·ha−1 in early March hastened the transition from ryegrass to bermudagrass in one of two years, but 1.7 kg·ha−1 applied in each of two applications did not. A single application of pronamide at 0.28 kg·ha−1 hastened the transition of overseeded ryegrass to bermudagrass without severely injuring either turfgrass. Oryzalin, oryzalin + benefin, or paraquat severely reduced the quality of ryegrass, while oxadiazon at 3.3 kg·ha−1, oxadiazon + benefin, glyphosate, metribuzin, or MSMA did not affect transition from overseeded ryegrass to bermudagrass when compared with nontreated turfgrass. This study illustrates the potential for some herbicides to enhance the transition from perennial ryegrass to bermudagrass. Chemical names used: N-butyl-N-ethyl-2,6-dinitro-4-(trifluoromethyl)benzenamine (benefin); dimethyl 2,3,5,6-tetrachloro-1,4-benzenedicarboxylate (DCPA); (±)-2-ethoxy-2,3-dihydro-3,3-dimethyl-5-benzofuranyl methanesulfonate (ethofumesate); N-(phosphonomethyl)glycine (glyphosate); N-[2,4-dimethyl-5-[[(trifluoromethyl) sulfonyl]amino]phenyI]acetamide (mefluidide); 4-amino-6-(1,1-dimethylethyl)-3-(methylthiol)-1,2,4-triazin-5(4H)-one (metribuzin); monosodium salt of MAA (MSMA); 4-(dipropylamino)-3,5-dinitrobenzene-sulfonamide (oryzalin); 3-[2,4-dichloro-5-(1-methylethoxy)-phenyl)-5-(1,1-dimethylethyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazol-2-(3H)-one-(oxadiazon); 1,1'-dimethyl-4,4'-bipyridinium salts (paraquat); N-(1-ethylpropyl)-3,4-dimethyl-2,6-dinitrobenzamine (pendimethalin); and 3,5-dichloro(N-1,1-dimethyl-2-propynyl)benamide (pronamide).

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Shawn Brewer and Michael Maurer

Transition of perennial ryegrass from bermudagrass athletic fields in the spring delays the establishment of bermudagrass when the establishment period is limited. The objective of this field study was to determine the effects of transition herbicides on the establishment of seeded bermudagrass. Treatments consisted of an untreated control, foramsulfuron, rimsulfuron, trifloxysulfuron sodium, metsulfuron methyl methyl, isoxaban, and oxadiazon at low- and high-labeled rates for transitioning perennial ryegrass. `Riviera' bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] seed was seeded immediately after treatment and 2 weeks after treatment. Turfgrass coverage was evaluated visually and by digital analysis. Although differences between methods of turfgrass coverage evaluation varied, the differences between treat-ments were similar. There was no significant differences in turfgrass establishment between foramsulfuron, rimsulfuron, trifloxysulfuron sodium, metsulfuron methyl methyl, and the control for either seeding date or rate. Turfgrass coverage was significantly less for isoxaban and no turfgrass was established in the oxadiazon treatments. Initial results of this research indicate that bermudagrass seed can be seeded immediately following the application of foramsulfuron, rimsulfuron, trifloxysulfuron sodium, and metsulfuron methyl methyl.

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Fahed A. Al-mana and David J. Beattie

A study of applying growth retardants under overhead and subsurface irrigation systems was conducted on bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon L. cv. Tifway) grown from rhizomes in 15-cm pots containing sand medium. Paclobutrazol (50%) at 2 mg/pot was used as foliar spray or charged-hydrophilic polymers (Super Sorb C) and either incorporated or put below medium surface. Mefluidide (28%) at 0.01% ml/pot was used only as foliar spray. Before spray treatments, grasses were cut at 2 cm from medium surface, and the second cut was made at the 6th week from treatment. All growth retardant treatments reduced grass height compared to non-treated plants. The lowest grass height was produced by paclobutrazol as foliar spray under overhead irrigation in the 6th and 9th week. By the 9th week, all hormonal treatments under the two irrigation systems had no effect on grass quality, color, and establishment rate. Both paclobutrazol foliar spray and below medium surface charged-polymer treatments under subsurface irrigation had the lowest water loss and dry weight by the 6th and 9th week. The paclobutrazol charged-polymer treatment under subsurface irrigation had also the the lowest root dry weight among all treatments. Although mefluidide foliar spray was less effective on grass height than paclobutrazol, they had similar effect on water loss and shoot dry weight.

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M.S. Flanagan, R.E. Schmidt, and R.B. Reneau Jr.

The “heavy fraction” portion of a municipal solid waste separation process was evaluated in field experiments as a soil amendment for producing turfgrass sod. Soil organic matter and concentrations of extractable NO3-N, P, K, Ca, and Zn in the soil increased with addition of heavy fraction. Soil incorporation of heavy fraction resulted in greater air, water, and total porosity and lower bulk density of a loamy sandy soil. .Sod strength measurements taken 8.5 and 9.5 months after seeding were higher for Kentucky bluegrass (Poaprutensis L.) grown in heavy-fraction-amended topsoil than for turf grown in topsoil only. The use of this by-product may reduce the time required to produce a marketable sod. Soil incorporation of heavy fraction did not influence post-transplant rooting of Kentucky bluegrass sod but enhanced rooting of bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] sod at the highest rate evaluated. Results of these studies suggest that the use of heavy fraction for sod production may provide cultural benefits in addition to reducing the volume of solid waste deposited in landfills.