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  • Author or Editor: T. Heng-Moss x
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Warm-season turfgrasses are grown throughout the warm humid, sub-humid, and semiarid regions. The objective of this study was to determine the adaptation of six warm-season turfgrass species and several of their cultivars to Mediterranean growing conditions of Turkey by evaluating turfgrass establishment rate, quality, color, and percentage of turfgrass cover. Information of this nature is lacking and would be helpful to turfgrass managers and advisers working in the region. A study was conducted over a 2-year period in two locations of the Mediterranean region of Turkey. The warm-season turfgrass species studied were bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon), buffalograss (Buchloë dactyloides), zoysiagrass (Zoysia japonica), bahiagrass (Paspalum notatum), seashore paspalum (Paspalum vaginatum), and centipedegrass (Eremochloa ophiurioides). Tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) was included as a cool-season turfgrass species for comparison. Twenty cultivars belonging to these species were evaluated for their establishment, turfgrass color and quality, spring green-up, and fall color retention. Bermudagrass, bahiagrass, and seashore paspalum established 95% or better coverage at 1095 growing degree days [GDD (5 °C base temperature)], buffalograss and centipedegrass at 1436 GDD, and ‘Zenith’ and ‘Companion’ Zoysiagrass had 90% and 84% coverage at Antalya after accumulating 2031 GDD. ‘Sea Spray’ seashore paspalum; ‘SWI-1044’, ‘SWI-1045’, ‘Princess 77’, and ‘Riviera’ bermudagrass; ‘Cody’ buffalograss; and ‘Zenith’ zoysiagrass exhibited acceptable turfgrass quality for 7 months throughout the growing season. ‘Argentine’ and ‘Pensacola’ bahiagrass; ‘Sea Spray’ seashore paspalum; and ‘SWI-1044’ and ‘SWI-1045’ bermudagrass extended their growing season by retaining their green color 15 days or longer than the rest of the warm-season cultivars and/or species in the fall. The warm-season species stayed fully dormant throughout January and February. Zoysiagrass and buffalograss cultivars showed early spring green-up compared to the other warm-season species studied. Results from this study support the use of warm-season turfgrass species in this Mediterranean region, especially when heat stress and water limitations exist. Tall fescue did not survive summer heat stress necessitating reseeding in fall.

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Buffalograss [Buchloe dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.] has the potential for increased use as a turfgrass species due to its low maintenance and water conservation characteristics. This study was conducted to estimate diversity and relationships among naturally occurring buffalograss genotypes based on the nuclear genome, using sequence-related amplified polymorphism (SRAP) markers. The 56 genotypes studied represented five ploidy levels collected from diverse geographic locations in the North American Great Plains. In addition, blue grama [Bouteloua gracilis (H.B.K.) Lag. Ex Steud.] and perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) were included as outgroups. Twenty-five combinations of forward and reverse primers were used. Ninety-five intensively amplified markers were scored and used to infer diversity and relationships among the genotypes. All buffalograss genotypes were discriminated from each other with similarity values ranging from 0.70 to 0.95. Principal component analysis (PCA) suggested that the 56 genotypes could be reduced to 50 due to high similarity levels among some of the genotypes. The distance between buffalograsses, blue grama, and perennial ryegrass were consistent with current taxonomical distances. This research indicates that SRAP markers can be used to estimate genetic diversity and relationships among naturally occurring buffalograss genotypes.

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