Secure Your Own Caddies at Bandon

We’re just two weeks away from the first round of golf during the annual conference of the Northwest Turfgrass Association at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.

Remember, Bandon Dunes is a walking-only facility.

Caddies are readily available, but it’s best, especially with the number of golfers we’re bringing, to secure your caddies ahead of time on your own. Securing and/or paying for caddies will not be done by the NTA.

You can secure a caddie by calling 541-347-5909. More information on the caddie services, and the recommended rate of $100 per round, is available by clicking here.

The latest tentative pairings for the two days of golf are now available.

Tentative pairings, Monday, Oct. 28 (Old Macdonald)
Tentative pairings, Tuesday, Oct. 29 (Bandon Trails)

We are keeping the number of golfers in the shotgun each day at 144 to ensure a reasonable pace of play. With our number of golfers right now at nearly 156 each day, we will need to move three groups each day out of the shotgun. On Monday, we’ve secured three tee times starting at noon at Bandon Trails. On Tuesday, we’ve secured three tee times starting at noon at Old Macdonald.

So, right now, we are looking for three groups to volunteer to drop out of the shotgun, and therefore out of the daily competition. In return, you should enjoy a quicker pace of play, as well as a tee prize from the NTA as a thank-you gift.

Please contact Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360, to volunteer your group to drop out of the shotgun or if you have any issues with the pairings.


NTA Conference Worth GCSAA Points

The two days of educational sessions at the NTA Conference will be worth 0.70 GCSAA Educational points. The code for the points will be announced at the end of the second day of education in Macdonald Hall at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.


Tour of Sheep Ranch Planned at NTA

Ken Nice, the Director of Agronomy at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, has been kind enough to offer a tour of the new Sheep Ranch course for attendees of the NTA Conference later this month.

The Sheep Ranch is set in a dramatic location, on cliffs just north of the current resort with numerous holes overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Its highly anticipated opening is now set for June 1, 2020.

Ken said any attendees of the conference who want a preview can meet him at his maintenance facility at 7 a.m. Wednesday morning, Oct. 30.

To get on the list for the tour, please contact Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the Northwest Turfgrass Association, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360. We want to have an accurate number of people on the tour so we can accommodate everyone appropriately.


NTA Conference Registration Now
“Waiting-List Only”

In order to make sure every attendee is able to have a quality experience at the NTA Conference in October, we have shut down the normal registration process and any new registrations as of Sept. 21 will go on a waiting list to see if space becomes available.

As of Sept. 21, we had 180 attendees registered for the conference Oct. 27-29 at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. For comparison purposes, we had 163 when the conference was at Bandon Dunes in 2012 and 157 in 2016.

Bandon Dunes is not designed to accommodate such large conferences, and if our numbers swell too much then each person’s experience will suffer. For example, if we put too many people on the golf course each day, then the round will become agonizingly slow and most people won’t be able to finish before dark. Also, the dining areas in the lodge at Bandon Dunes won’t be able to handle 180 people all at once, so we’re probably going to have to stagger the times when attendees can come in for dinner to make sure everyone has a comfortable place to sit. We’ve virtually maxed out all the overnight accommodations at the resort, and gathering 180 people together for the educational sessions will be a major challenge.

Therefore, we will be starting a waiting list, and we’ll go to that list if we have any cancellations between now and the start of the conference.

Click here to view the list of attendees as of Sept. 21.

Any questions or comments can be directed to Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the Northwest Turfgrass Association, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360. Thank you for your understanding.


Ballot Ready for NTA Annual Meeting

The ballot to determine the next three Board members for the Northwest Turfgrass Association is ready for the association’s annual meeting, set for 7:30 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 29 at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.

Click here for your copy of the ballot.

You do not need to attend the annual meeting to vote. Instructions are on the ballot on how to submit your ballot before the annual meeting.

If you are attending the annual meeting, there is no need to print out a copy of this ballot. Ballots will be made available during the annual meeting.

The NTA would like to thank Russell Vandehey for his service the past three years as a member of the Board of Directors. His term will come to an end with the annual meeting. The term of Sean Watts, who was appointed to the Board after the death of Dave Kennedy last winter, also comes to an end. Michael Bednar, the current NTA president, will continue to serve the association as the Past President on the Board.

Announced candidates for the three-year terms on the board are David Fair of Northview Golf & Country Club, Dan Salois of Planet Turf and Sean Watts of Simplot.

Any questions about the NTA or its Board of Directors can be directed to any NTA Board member. Click here for a list of members. Or questions can be directed to Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


Speaking Schedule Set For NTA Conference

Dr. Brian Horgan

The schedule for speakers and their presentations is all set for the 73rd annual conference of the Northwest Turfgrass Association, set for Oct. 27-29 at Bandon Dunes.

Click here for the complete conference schedule.

Dr. Brian Horgan from the University of Minnesota will give talks on Sustainable Turfgrass Systems and Communicating the Natural Capital Value of Golf Courses.

The two presentations from Dr. Michael Richardson from the University of Arkansas will be Soil Surfactants and Irrigation Management and Gadgets and Gizmos.

Dr. Horgan did his undergraduate studies at Michigan State and his post-graduate work at North Carolina State and Illinois. He recently received the President’s Award from the Minnesota Golf Course Superintendents Association. He is the past chair of the Turfgrass Science division of the Crop Science Society and science editor for Turf News.

Dr. Michael Richardson

Dr. Richardson did his undergraduate work at Louisiana Tech and his post-graduate work at Louisiana State and Georgia. He recently was awarded the Fred V. Grau Turfgrass Science Award by the Crop Science Society of America. In 2016, he was honored with the Spitze Land Grant Faculty Award for Excellence.

The Oregon State University team of Dr. Alex Kowalewski, Brian McDonald and Clint Mattox will deliver two different presentations concerning Microdochium Patch. Also, Larry Gilhuly, the soon-to-be retired Northwest agronomist for the USGA, will offer turf tips he’s learned the past 30 years on the job.

There’s just a couple of weeks left for the Early Bird registration rate that will include three nights lodging at Bandon Dunes on the Southern Oregon coast as well as two days of meals and golf. The rate of $725 per person (double occupancy) will be available until July 31, and then the rate goes to $775.

Click here for the registration form and more information on registration options.

Any questions about the conference at Bandon Dunes, as well as information about sponsorship opportunities, is available by contacting Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


Nate Stacey’s Biosolids Study Available

A study conducted by Nate Stacey at Washington State University concerning land applications of biosolids has been completed and now is available to members of the Northwest Turfgrass Association.

The NTA assisted with financial support for this study.

You can click here to view this study, which was published by Applied Soil Ecology with the official title: “Composted biosolids for golf course turfgrass management: Impacts on the soil microbiome and nutrient cycling.”

More information on the NTA, and the turfgrass research it supports, is available at www.nwturfgrass.net, or from Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


NTA Donations Surpass $1.3 Million

With the $50,327 in donations to worthy turfgrass research and education programs the Northwest Turfgrass Association will be distributing in 2019, the total contributions from the NTA in recent history surpasses $1.3 million.

The modern history of the NTA includes $1,304,975 donated to mostly Northwest entities between 1997 and 2019. That averages out to more than $56,000 a year to support turfgrass research at various universities and turfgrass educational support for various programs as well as numerous scholarships to turfgrass students.

Click here for a breakdown of the financial contributions from 1997 to 2019.

The NTA dates back a lot longer than 1997, but that’s the earliest with available records.

In fact, this year marks the 73rd annual conference of the NTA, which is one of the main fund-raising events throughout the year.

Registration now is open for the annual conference to be held at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, with a special early bird rate available between now and July 31.

The NTA Conference will be Oct. 27-29 with an early bird registration rate of $725 for double occupancy, which includes three nights lodging at the famed resort on the southern Oregon coast.

The NTA conference is growing this year with a third night of lodging and another lunch added compared to past conferences.

Click here for more information on registration. The early bird rate of $725 is available until July 31 and then it converts to the regular double occupancy rate of $775. The single occupancy rate will be $995.

Click here for more information on the schedule. The NTA has secured Dr. Brian Horgan from the University of Minnesota and Dr. Michael Richardson from the University of Arkansas to be headline speakers.

Click here for information on sponsorships for the conference.

If you have any questions or want more details, please contact Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


NTA Donates $50,000 Toward Research

The Northwest Turfgrass Association will be donating $50,327 to worthy turfgrass research and education programs in 2019 as it continues to be a leading benefactor for the golf industry in the Northwest. Over the past five years, the NTA has donated almost a quarter of a million dollars to various programs.

There will be three separate research studies at Oregon State University that the NTA will continue to fund, totaling $31,160. All three studies pertain to Microdochium Patch, a consistent disease problem for turfgrass managers in the Northwest.

Reports on the progress made so far on those studies are available below.

The NTA also will be supporting a $10,000 study by Dr. Paul Koch at the University of Wisconsin on snow mold control in higher elevations in the Northwest.

Included in the financial support being distributed by the NTA is $1,700 to both the Inland Empire GCSA and the Western Washington GCSA to help finance the development of a Best Management Practices guidelines for superintendents in the Northwest.

In all for 2019, six different entities in the Northwest will be supported through the grants, which were decided by the NTA Board of Directors after recommendations from the Research Committee.

The grants from the NTA are made possible through the numerous and generous contributions from clubs and individuals throughout the Northwest.

For 2019, after extensive consideration and recommendations from the NTA Research Committee, the Board of Directors awarded the following research and education grants:

Comparing iron sulfate versus chelated iron for the suppression of Microdochium Patch on annual bluegrass putting greens in the absence and presence of phosphorous acid—
Oregon State University—$11,141.00—Progress report

Effects of winter nitrogen, phosphate and potassium rates on Microdochium Patch—
Oregon State University—$10,020.00—Progress report

Quantifying the long-term effects of alternative Microdochium Patch management techniques on sand-based annual bluegrass putting green performance over multiple seasons—
Oregon State University—$9,999.00—Progress report

Snow mold control in higher elevations in the Northwest—
University of Wisconsin—$10,000.00

Turfgrass field lab construction—
Walla Walla Community College—$3,267.00

Bill Griffith Turfgrass Management Scholarship—
Walla Walla Community College—$2,500.00

Northwest BMP funding—
Inland Empire GCSA—$1,700.00

Northwest BMP funding—
Western Washington GCSA—$1,700.00

For more information on how to apply for grants for 2020, or to contribute directly to the NTA, contact Paul Ramsdell, executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


Research Studies Available Through CTRF

The Northwest Turfgrass Association, through its new role as part of the Canadian Turfgrass Research Foundation, has a bevy of new turfgrass research studies now available to its members.

The NTA joined the CTRF in 2018 and was a part of the process in supporting 2019 turfgrass research. Those research studies and supporting information are listed below.

Meanwhile, the NTA continues in its normal practice of independently supporting turfgrass research in the Pacific Northwest and beyond, generally to the tune of roughly $50,000 a year. The NTA Research Committee and the Board of Directors currently is examining research proposals for 2019.

Here is a breakdown of what the NTA supported via the CTRF. More information on these studies and the relationship with the CTRF is available by contacting Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.

Foliar Applications of N and K for improving Cold Tolerance of poa annua

Currently there is conflicting information on the effects of Nitrogen (N) focused fall fertility programs for improving cold tolerance during the acclimation and spring recovery (deacclimation) time frames. In general, the literature shows a trend of positive effect for improving frost hardiness during the acclimation period with N applications (Taulavuori, et al., 2004).
Click here for the latest report in this study.

The Effect of Snow Cover and Anti-Transpirants on the Persistence of Snow Mold Fungicides

The objective of this project, coordinated by Dr. Paul Koch at the University of Wisconsin, is to determine the rate of degradation of fungicides chlorothalonil and propiconazole applied alone or as a mixture with an anti-transpirant under constant snow cover and in the complete absence of snow. It will also correlate the fungicide concentrations on the leaf blades sampled from the field with the level of disease symptoms on creeping bentgrass plants inoculated with snow mold fungi incubated in a growth chamber.
Click here for the latest report in this study.

Testing Lower Risk Fungicides Against Turf Diseases

This project, coordinated by Dr. Thomas Hsiang at the University of Guelph, is to investigate the use of lower-risk fungicides against turfgrass diseases. The specific practical objective is to quantify the extent by which common diseases such as dollar spot, fusarium patch and snow molds can be reduced in lab and field tests, using different application regimes of low risk chemicals such as acetic acid (vinegar), borax, citric acid, garlic powder, hydrogen peroxide, iron sulfate, lime sulfur, phosphites, soaps, sodium chloride, and sulfur.
Click here for the latest report in this study.

Management of Take all Patch in High Ph Soils

The work and reports for this project will be performed under the direction of Katerina Jordan, Principal Investigator at the University of Guelph. The disease take-all patch, caused by the fungus Gaeumannomyces graminis var. avenae has been a major issue on golf sites in Ontario and the prairie provinces, likely due to the alkaline soil pH levels found in those regions. The primary objectives of this study are to positively identify G. graminis from golf turf samples throughout Canada and to develop best management practices for the disease in areas with alkaline soils.
Click here for the latest report in this study.

Identification of Drought Resistant Turfgrass Cultivars for Water Conservation

The work and reports for this project will be performed under the direction of Jim Ross, Principal Investigator at Olds College and Dr. Eric Lyons Ph.D., Principal Investigator at the University of Guelph. Water use in urban environments is an important issue, and over the past few years watering restrictions have become commonplace. Restrictions on turfgrasses as landscape plants have been proposed in a number of jurisdictions in North America. This project will assist the turfgrass industry by: 1) helping the industry select turfgrass varieties that maintain green cover and playability with less water use, and 2) determining the actual water use of different turfgrass species and varieties at different mowing heights.
Click here for the latest report in this study.


Historic NTA Publications Now Online

Some fantastic historical turfgrass research articles from the archives of the Northwest Turfgrass Association now are available online, thanks to the Turfgrass Information Center at Michigan State University.

More than 1,000 articles pertaining to turfgrass issues in the Northwest and written by the leaders in the industry now can be easily accessed online.

The NTA’s publication from 1959 to 1997, Northwest Turfgrass Topics, is available by following this link: https://d.lib.msu.edu/nwtgt.

The written proceedings and studies from the annual conference of Northwest Turfgrass Association, starting with the third annual conference back in 1950 at the State College of Washington, are available by following this link: https://d.lib.msu.edu/nwtgc.

These archives, an ongoing cooperative project of the NTA and the Michigan State University Libraries, features public access to both periodicals as they were published and as copies are available.

All turf-related articles from within these materials, more than 1,000 in all, also are indexed and linked from within the Turfgrass Information File (TGIF) database: http://tic.msu.edu/tgif.

For a full list of all publicly-available and restricted-access archives hosted by TIC, please see: https://tic.msu.edu/browse.

Any questions about the NTA material can be directed to Paul Ramsdell, executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


Poa Annua Control Research Reports

Dr. William Johnston and Charles Golob from the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences at Washington State University have prepared a research report on their study on “Biological Control of Poa Annua in Fairways.”

The Northwest Turfgrass Association donated $15,000 toward this research in both 2016 and 2017.

Year One report.
Year Two report.


OSU Presents Update Report on Research

The Turfgrass Management Program at Oregon State University—namely Dr. Alec Kowalewski, Brian McDonald and Clint Mattox—has prepared updates on its research on Fungicide Alternatives Management of Microdochium Patch and Anthracnose.

The Northwest Turfgrass Association donated $15,000 toward this research in 2016 and $40,000 toward similar research in 2015.

Click here for the written report.


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