Rub Shoulders with Top Poa Researchers

Attendees of the 73rd annual conference of the Northwest Turfgrass Association, set for Oct. 27-29 at Bandon Dunes, will have a chance to meet, greet and debate with some of the top Poa annua researchers from around the country.

In conjunction with the NTA Conference, which will include two days and three nights at Bandon Dunes, will be a gathering of the USDA-Specialty Crop Research Initiative Annual Bluegrass Project.

University researchers from Rutgers, Purdue, University of Tennessee, University of Florida, and elsewhere around the country will be conducting meetings at Bandon Dunes on Oct. 28-29 and joining NTA attendees for golf, meals, and various presentations. More on the USDA-SCRI project is available by visiting resistpoa.org.

Also in attendance will be the headline speakers for the NTA, Dr. Brian Horgan of the University of Minnesota, who will soon take over the turfgrass program at Michigan State, and Dr. Michael Richardson from the University of Arkansas. Oregon State’s Dr. Alec Kowalewski, Brian McDonald, and Clint Mattox also will be making presentations.

This will be a great chance to network with some of the top minds in turfgrass, and can make your three days at Bandon Dunes that much more valuable for your facility and your career.

Click here for the registration page for the NTA Conference. The registration fee for the conference is $775 for double occupancy, but there are plenty of other registration categories as well.

Click here for the current schedule for the conference.

Also, you can check out who has registered for the conference so far by clicking here. If you already have registered and your name is not on this attendees list, please contact Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360.


Students Can Win Free NTA Registration

In an effort to encourage more college turfgrass students to attend the annual conference of the Northwest Turfgrass Association, the NTA is setting up an achievement/essay contest in which two students can win free registration.

The NTA Conference is set for Bandon Dunes Golf Resort on Oct. 27-29th with three nights of lodging and meals and golf included on Oct. 28-29th. It has a value of $775.

Interested college turfgrass students need to fill out this form, and return it to Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA. He can be reached at mpsparks90@aol.com or 253-219-8360. Deadline for submitting the entry is Sept. 20. Paul also is available for any questions on the contest.

The NTA Board of Directors will select two winners, who will be notified by Oct. 1. Students will have to be able to get themselves to and from Bandon Dunes, but other than that the NTA will pick up their tab for the conference.


A Chance to Mix Football With The NTA

If you are interested in taking in some college football on your way to the annual conference at Bandon Dunes, the NTA can help you out.

We have two tickets for sale to watch Washington State play at Oregon at Autzen Stadium in Eugene on Saturday, Oct. 26. The annual conference of the NTA is set for Oct. 27-29th at Bandon Dunes.

The two seats are in Section 34, Row 7. The cost for the two tickets will be $190. Game time most likely won’t be announced until about 10 days before the game.

If you are interested, or have any questions, please contact Paul Ramsdell, the executive director of the NTA, at mpsparks90@aol.com, or at 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.


Mattox's Microdochium Patch research available

Clint Mattox has completed his masters’ dissertation at Oregon State University and his research is available to you, thanks to the donations the Northwest Turfgrass Association has made to the turfgrass management program at Oregon State.

“Managing Microdochium Patch Using Non-Traditional Fungicides on Annual Bluegrass Putting Greens” is available by following this link: http://hdl.handle.net/1957/57194

Here is a brief description of the research:

Currently, fungicide applications are the predominant method of control for the cool-weather pathogen Microdochium patch. Increasing pesticide restrictions have generated concern regarding management of Microdochium patch. Three separate field trials exploring non-traditional fungicides were conducted between 2013 and 2015 on an annual bluegrass sand-based putting green at the Lewis Brown Horticulture Farm in Corvallis, Ore. The objective of the first project was to evaluate the effects of the cultural practice of rolling in combination with mineral oil and fertility on Microdochium patch incidence. The objective of the second trial was to quantify the effects on Microdochium patch incidence using biological control products in combination with rolling. Finally, the objective of the third experiment was to quantify the effects of different nitrogen and iron sulfate rates in combination with simulated golfer traffic on the effects of Microdochium patch incidence as well as turfgrass recuperation.

Mattox currently is working on his PhD at Oregon State and is continuing his exploration of “Alternatives to Non-Traditional Fungicides.”

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