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H. Liu, J.R. Heckman and J.A. Murphy

The fine fescues are generally considered to be acid-tolerant compared to many other cool-season turfgrasses. However, there is a lack of documentation on aluminum tolerance of fine fescues at both the species and cultivar levels. A total of 58 genotypes belonging to five species or sub-species were screened under greenhouse conditions using solution culture, sand culture, and acid Tatum subsoil. This soil had 69% exchangeable Al and a pH of 4.4. An Al concentration of 640 μM and a pH 4.0 were used in solution screening and sand screening. Differences in Al tolerance were identified at both species and cultivar levels based on relative growth. The genotypes with endophyte infection generally exhibited greater Al tolerance than endophyte-free genotypes. The results indicate that fine fescues vary in Al tolerance and there is potential to improve Al tolerance with breeding and to refine management recommendations for fine fescues regarding soil pH.

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M.D. Orzolek, J.H. Murphy and L. Otjen

Early weed infestation in vegetable crops reduces both early and total marketable yield and quality. Even if escape weeds (12 inches tall or larger) are later killed by a postemergence herbicide application, their skeletons can cause yield loss due to competition for light, temperature modification within the plant canopy, and interference with fungicide and insecticide applications. In addition, weeds can also serve as a reservoir for insect and disease organisms, especially viruses. Experiments in nonchemical weed control in cabbage were conducted at the Horticulture Research Farm, Russell E. Larson Research Center, Rock Springs, Pa., from 1993 to 1995. In addition to weedy and hoed check plots, flaming weeds at 2- to 4-leaf stage of growth with propane gas burners and planting annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum) between the rows of cabbage, living mulch, were evaluated during 3 years. The cabbage cultivar Rio Verde was transplanted generally between 15 June and July during each year. Both flaming and living mulch treatments produced yield and head quality similar to the hoed check. Management and timing of ryegrass planting in relation to cabbage establishment is very critical for success with living mulch. Flaming requires straight rows of cabbage or other crop, tractor with driver that can maintain a straight line, and burners that are aligned to burn weeds and not the crop. Results will be discussed.