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  • Author or Editor: H. Wayne Philley x
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As turfgrass quality of seeded bermudagrass (SB) [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.] cultivars has increased over the past 20 years, so has their use. Improved SB cultivars offer ease of establishment and convenience of storage while providing an economic advantage over vegetative propagation. Currently, most improved seeded cultivars are marketed with a seedcoating unique to each seed company. However, germination of some of the new cultivars is not ideal. The objectives of this study were to determine commercial coating effects on germination, compare germination among cultivars, and evaluate the effect of temperature on germination of five bermudagrass cultivars. ‘Princess-77’, ‘Riviera’, ‘Transcontinental’, and ‘Yukon’ were selected for a series of 21-day germination studies with ‘Arizona Common’ included as a standard cultivar. The study compared two seed lots of coated and uncoated samples of the five cultivars for germination response to six temperature regimes. Cumulative count intervals occurred on Day 7, Day 14, and Day 21. Overall, commercial seedcoating did not significantly affect SB germination. However, both temperature regime and cultivar were significant factors. Germination percentage was greatest with either the 35/25 °C or the 30/20 °C temperature regimes. ‘Riviera’ exhibited the lowest overall germination, whereas ‘Transcontinental’ and ‘Arizona Common’ exhibited the highest.

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Traditional hollow-tine (HT) aerification programs can cause substantial damage to the putting green surface resulting in prolonged recovery. Despite the growing interest in new and alternative aerification technology, there is a lack of information in the literature comparing new or alternative technology with traditional methods on ultradwarf bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. × C. transvaalensis (Burtt-Davy)] putting greens. Therefore, the objective of this research was to determine the best combination of dry-injection (DI) cultivation technology with modified traditional HT aerification programs to achieve minimal surface disruption without a compromise in soil physical properties. Research was conducted at the Mississippi State University golf course practice putting green from 1 June to 31 Aug. 2014 and 2015. Treatments included two HT sizes (0.6 and 1.3 cm diameter), various DI cultivation frequencies applied with a DryJect 4800, and a noncultivated control. The HT 1.3 cm diameter tine size had 76% greater water infiltration (7.6 cm depth) compared with the DI + HT 0.6 cm diameter tine size treatment. However, DI + HT 0.6 cm diameter tine size had greater water infiltration at the 10.1 cm depth than the noncultivated control. Results suggest a need for an annual HT aerification event due to reduced water infiltration and increased volumetric water content (VWC) in the noncultivated control treatment. It can be concluded that DI would be best used in combination with HT 1.3 or 0.6 cm diameter tine sizes to improve soil physical properties; however, the DI + HT 0.6 cm diameter tine size treatment resulted in minimum surface disruption while still improving soil physical properties compared with the noncultivated control.

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Hybrid bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon × Cynodon transvaalensis] is frequently used throughout the southern and transitional climatic zones of the United States. These grasses can only be vegetatively propagated, such as by sprigging. Turf managers will often apply high rates of sprigs and nitrogen (N) in an attempt to minimize the time to establishment. However, little is known about how planting and N rates affect establishment. The objective of this study was to determine optimum sprigging and N rates during the establishment of ‘Latitude 36’ hybrid bermudagrass to minimize time to full surface cover. The study was conducted in four locations across the southern United States during Summer 2015. Sprigging rates consisted of 200, 400, 600, and 800 U.S. bushels/acre (9.3 gal/bushel), and N rates were 0, 11, 22, and 44 lb/acre N per week. Results showed that as the N rate increased, percent cover generally increased but only slightly [7% difference between high and low rates 5 weeks after planting (WAP)]. The effect of sprig rate on percent cover indicated that as rate increased, cover also increased. Differences in establishment due to sprig rate were present until 6 WAP at which time all plots achieved 100% cover. The greatest difference between N and sprig rate was that sprig rate showed differences in percent cover immediately, whereas N rate differences were not apparent until 2 WAP. Increasing sprig rather than N rate should be considered to speed up establishment.

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