Turf Line News

September 2012

Issue link: http://read.dmtmag.com/i/82830

Contents of this Issue


Page 14 of 47

TURF RESEARCH CANADIAN TURF RESEARCH FOUNDATION The Canadian Turfgrass Research Foundation (CTRF) is a national coalition of research organizations who support turfgrass research in Canada at the national level. Besides provincial turfgrass research bodies, it includes Golf Canada and the Canadian Golf Superintendents Association (CGSA). The CTRF was established in 1981 and holds charitable status. The CTRF celebrated 30 years of operations in July of 2011 and is currently being managed by the CGSA. In June of this year, the Ontario Turf Research Foundation informed the CTRF they would no longer be supporting the national research initiative. A letter from OTRF President Cedar Nisbet, cited their mandate to 'provide research grants that will benefit all sectors of the turfgrass industry' and that the CTRF contribution assessment (for each provincial region) based solely on the number of Golf Canada's regional member facilities does not fit with the OTRF mission. The OTRF encourages the CTRF to expand to include turfgrass research that benefits the entire turfgrass industry and will continue to support the efforts of the CTRF. The CTRF launched a website early in 2012 http://turfresearchcanada.ca/ and has signed a deal with Naylor Publishing to print an annual magazine, the first edition of which is scheduled for distribution at the end of January 2013. The magazine will be distributed to memberships of all regionally affiliated turfgrass research organizations along with the CGSA. A national plan for coordinating research 'Call for proposals' is being discussed that would streamline the funding application process for researchers. Currently, each regional funding agency has their own process through which turfgrass researchers apply for funding. As suggested by the OTRF, the plan is to have researchers applying for turfgrass research grants prepare one grant application that would be circulated to all turfgrass research funding agencies. Each of these agencies would evaluate the applications and determine which are relevant to their own research funding priorities. With the new strategy, each regional group would have the option of funding 2012 UPDATE a particular project on their own. Some of the applications may be of national interest and either funded solely by CTRF or jointly with one of the participating turfgrass foundations. By sharing research project applications, duplication of grant applications is avoided and all groups would have the opportunity to keep informed about ongoing turfgrass research across Canada. The schedule is proposed as follows: October 1st- Release of Call for Proposals December 1st- Grant Application Submission deadline and applications compiled January through February (next calendar year)- Evaluation of proposals, individually and collaboratively March 1st - Applicants are notified of the grant request decision and release of funds to successful applicants. December 31st - Interim reports of current year's progress due. A possible collaboration between CTRF and STERF (Scandinavian Turfgrass and Environment Research Foundation) has been discussed over the past year, including at a joint meeting held in Calgary in February, 2012. Similar challenges facing the golf sectors in Canada and the Nordic countries have created similar turf research priorities for the two groups. The CTRF and STERF are structured in a similar manner with a couple of important differences. In the case of the CTRF, it is a voluntary federation of organizations that have agreed that turf research is important to their respective members and that there is a need to raise funds and support research on a national scale. The same can be said for STERF, except that STERF involves the cooperation of a number of countries with both a monetary and a political investment in conducting research to benefit the field of turf research. STERF also has full-time staff and a budget that is several times greater than the annual CTRF budget. Current CTRF Turf Research projects include: Management, host pathogenicity, and rapid identification of Magnaporthe poae, causal agent of summer patch on annual bluegrass and Kentucky bluegrass turf, Katerina S. Jordan and J. Christopher Hall. Project summary: With increasing demands placed on golf course putting green turf combined with increased temperatures over the last few years, the incidence of diseases such as summer patch have increased throughout Ontario. Summer patch is a root disease caused by the fungus Magnaporthe poae and it is most pathogenic on annual bluegrass (Poa annua), Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis), and fine fescues (Festuca spp.). The pathogen grows best under conditions of warm air and soil temperatures and high soil moisture. Symptom development can occur at any time when the turfgrass is stressed, although the above conditions are usually when symptoms develop on turf as well. The disease is managed primarily through preventative chemical applications in conjunction with cultural practices. However, the appropriate method of pesticide application (e.g. application volume, additional irrigation) and the effects of various cultural practices on pathogen survival and disease development are not well known for the disease on annual bluegrass putting greens. In addition, pathogenicity and natural resistance in annual bluegrass ecotypes are not known in Ontario. Finally, proper diagnosis of this disease relies on visual observation of symptoms and signs on the roots, both of which can sometimes be misleading. The objectives of this study have been to develop best management practices for summer patch, determine host specificity and pathogenicity to gain a better understanding of disease development, and to develop a rapid and simple diagnostic tool for presence of Magnaporthe poae in the hopes of decreasing fungicide use by increasing the efficacy of preventive applications. Compost Tea for the Management of Dollar Spot (Sclerotinia homoeocarpa) on Creeping Bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera), B. Prithiviraj, Department of Environmental Sciences, Nova Scotia Agricultural College Turfgrasses are unique in their capability of tolerating foot traffic and physical wear, while still remaining functional and aesthetically pleasing. Dollar Spot (Sclerotinia homoeocarpa) is the most damaging, persistent, and costly fungal disease in the turfgrass industry. The recent move toward reducing chemical usage within the turfgrass industry in addition to local and regional governments banning the use of pesticides for maintaining turfgrass areas has resulted in the need to develop more "green" technology. The use of compost tea is one type of "green" technology that has shown potential as a Dollar spot control, but its efficacy in the field has been found by Atlantic region turfgrass managers to be inconsistent. Although much research has been done elsewhere investigating compost tea's efficacy toward reducing dollar spot related to stimulating microbial activity in the soil and on the turfgrass blades, very little work has been done related to the physio-chemical properties of the tea or induced physiological changes in the turfgrass. NTA HAS 1-2-3 PUNCH FOR ANNUAL CONFERENCE By Paul Ramsdell - The Northwest Turfgrass Association has put together a virtual 1-2-3 punch for its 66th annual conference, set for this fall on Oct. 28- 30. First, Tim Moraghan, the former director of championship agronomy for the USGA, will be the featured speaker both days of the conference. Secondly, legendary Oregon State University researcher and educator Tom Cook will come out of retirement to lead a panel discussion. And thirdly, everything happens at Bandon Dunes, one of the most magical golf destinations in the world. The basic complete registration package will be $550 and include two nights lodging at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. The rates are based on double occupancy, so you can either find a friend to room with, or we can set you up with a roommate for the two nights. Registration begins Sunday, Oct. 28 at 11:30 a.m. at the resort on the Southern Oregon coast with golf Sunday afternoon on Bandon Trails. A welcoming dinner reception will be held Sunday night. Educational sessions start Monday morning and Mr. Moraghan, the principal of Aspire Golf Consulting, will have a talk both Monday and Tuesday mornings. Golf will be played Monday afternoon on Old Macdonald, the newest 18-hole course at Bandon Dunes.The NTA's annual business meeting will be Tuesday morning followed by another educational session and then a panel discussion to be moderated by Mr. Cook. More information is available on the various registration packages by visiting www.nwturfgrass.net. More information on the conference and sponsorship opportunities is available by contacting Paul Ramsdell, NTA executive director at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360. WESTERN CANADA TURFGRASS ASSOCIATION 15

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Turf Line News - September 2012