Source: PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY submitted to
MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH FOR DEVELOPING SUSTAINABLE TURFGRASS SYSTEMS
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
REVISED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0222520
Grant No.
(N/A)
Project No.
PEN04401
Proposal No.
(N/A)
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
(N/A)
Project Start Date
Jul 1, 2010
Project End Date
Jun 30, 2015
Grant Year
(N/A)
Project Director
Huff, DA.
Recipient Organization
PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY
208 MUELLER LABORATORY
UNIVERSITY PARK,PA 16802
Performing Department
Plant Science
Non Technical Summary
Amenity turfgrasses represent a large and viable industry in Pennsylvania. According to the most recent available survey, approximately 2 million acres of turf are maintained in Pennsylvania, including home lawns, commercial properties, athletic fields, golf courses, institutional grounds, roadsides, and sod farms. The annual cost of maintaining turf in Pennsylvania, including equipment, is $1.5 billion. To maintain a profitable and sustainable turfgrass industry in Pennsylvania, lawn and grounds maintenance personnel, athletic field managers, golf course superintendents, and homeowners must make informed decisions concerning turf health that will ultimately affect overall quality, playability, persistence, and profitability. Such decisions need to be based on sound management principles including proper species and cultivar selection; improved cultural practices and irrigation efficiency; integrated pest management; efficient use of fertilizers, lime, and soil amendments; protection of water resources; as well as incorporating recycled organic residuals (compost) and non-organic residues (coal slag, crumb rubber, etc.). The multifaceted nature of these decisions requires fundamental and applied scientific research to developed an information-based decision making process. In addition, outreach programs are required to educate turfgrass managers and end-users in the resulting principles of sustainable turf management. The ultimate goal and main focus of this research and educational project is to develop multidisciplinary approaches for developing sustainable turfgrass management systems that reduce the cultural input requirements of our turf and native grasses. Past turfgrass science research focused their experimental results on improving the management practices that were currently accepted at those times. Today, due to the pressure of environmental concerns, the management tools that had been relied upon in the past are becoming reduced or eliminated. Areas of primary concern include nutrient management, pesticide and nutrient fate, ground water safety, and the genetic safety and integrity of native and wild species of grasses. Such changes require new research to determine those management practices that best result in attractive lawns and safe sports surfaces that are sustainable given reduced inputs such as nutrients, pesticides, mowing and irrigation. Moreover, to be effective, solutions require a holistic approach which account for all associated factors within a comprehensive turfgrass management system. The proposed research will utilize a multidisciplinary approach to develop sets of best management practices for alleviating environmental concerns over the excessive use of nutrients and pesticides while maintaining a focus on the utility, playability, and economic sustainability of the turfgrass system. We expect the turfgrass industry of Pennsylvania to benefit from our proposed research by realizing increased efficiency of their management practices to protect the environment while providing aesthetically pleasing, safe, playable turfs.
Animal Health Component
60%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
40%
Applied
60%
Developmental
0%
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
2162130108020%
2162130114016%
2162130116016%
2162130200016%
2162130204016%
2162130310016%
Goals / Objectives
1) Disease and weed management: Determine if fungicide application timing and the use of biological control products can help to suppress disease symptoms to acceptable levels while reducing the use of pesticides. Identify cultural and chemical management strategies designed to either manage or suppress weeds like annual bluegrass and diseases on golf course turf. Findings from this objective will be designed to develop programs that reduce the overall reliance on fungicides and herbicides used to manage golf course turf. 2) Management of nutrients and soil water repellency: To determine optimal timing of late season N applications to cool season turfgrasses, as well as the interactive or main effects of N rate and plant growth regulator treatments, on winter survival and spring vigor of intensively-managed putting green systems. Furthermore, examination of nutrient interactions and subsequent influence on stress-tolerance and vigor of creeping bentgrass putting greens. In regards to soil water repellency; the project seeks improved understanding of the relationship between molarity of ethanol droplet and repellency index measures of water repellent sands, and intends to develop an empirical linear prediction model. 3) Athletic Field Playing Quality: Develop new procedures and refine existing methods used to evaluate playing surface quality. Efforts will be focused on human-surface interaction such as impact attenuation and athlete to shoe to surface relationships. These protocols will be used to compare natural surfaces (turfgrass), synthetic surfaces (artificial turf) and the skinned areas of baseball fields. Determine the effects of varying cultural practices on the morphology and resulting playing surface quality of various turfgrass species/cultivars. Examine the differences in root morphology between various turfgrass species/cultivars enabling the development of turfgrass specific root-zone systems that will maximize turfgrass quality. Evaluate the playing surface quality of various infill synthetic turf systems over time. The effects of various maintenance practices on the playing surface quality of these systems will also be evaluated. 4) Breeding and genetic enhancement for biotic and abiotic stress tolerance: Collect and evaluate native and exotic grass germplasm to broaden the genetic base and improve economically- and ecologically-important traits. Develop agronomically improved cultivars of turfgrass species through traditional and molecular breeding methodologies to provide enhanced landscape environments, provide safe and affordable athletic surfaces, and control soil erosion. Identify, characterize, and localize genes and chromosomal regions that regulate and control economic- and ecologically-importance traits to enhance our manipulation of these traits in the breeding program. 5) Turfgrass management systems: Develop a systems approach for turfgrass management to alleviate environmental concerns over the excessive use of nutrients and pesticides while maintaining a focus on the utility, playability, and economic sustainability of the turfgrass system.
Project Methods
1) Disease and weed management: Field research will be performed on the influence of fungicide timing and/or biological control as it relates to disease management. Additionally, several biological control products are entering the market, but limited information related to their efficacy is available. 2) Management of nutrients and soil water repellency: Research will performed on late season N fertilization regimens and their influence on winter hardiness and spring vigor. Likewise, sand samples, collected from the surface of putting greens will be evaluated for water repellency by two alternative methods. Simple linear regression will be used to model the repellency index from paired EtOH molar concentrations of respective infiltrating solutions. 3) Athletic Field Playing Quality: Methods used in other disciplines (sports medicine, auto industry, commercial flooring, playground surface safety) for evaluation of human-surface interaction will will be used simultaneously to evaluate a wide variety of surfaces characteristics to develop safer, more durable athletic playing surfaces. Field plots of varying soil types, depths, and drainage systems will be established for evaluation of inorganic soil amendments. Field plots of existing and experimental turfgrass cultivars being developed at Penn State will be established on a sand root-zone and exposed to varying wear intensities and cultural practices. A study will be designed to compare the playing surface quality of natural turfgrass, traditional synthetic turf, and various infill systems over time. 4) Breeding and genetic enhancement for biotic and abiotic stress tolerance: Hybridization experiments and field evaluations for biotic and abiotic stress tolerance will be planned and assessed for developing improved turfgrass cultivars requiring fewer chemical inputs. Breeding approaches will be dictated by the reproductive biology of the particular species. Resulting cultivars will be evaluated for turf performance and biotic and abiotic stress tolerance in association with appropriate management systems. Molecular genetic analysis will be used to identify primary and secondary gene pools for breeding purposes. 5) Turfgrass management systems: A suitable complement to the widely employed reductionist approach to turfgrass cultural research is the holistic or systems approach. This type of research involves the accumulation of information comprehensively describing a particular problem or problematic situation. The issues emerging from this analysis are identified in preparation for the development and evaluation of strategies for addressing the situation. With the implementation of selected strategies, the situation is assessed again to determine the extent to which problem has been solved or the problematic situation ameliorated. These case studies are useful as teaching resources to illustrate cause and effect relationships and for providing students with opportunities to develop their analytical and problem-solving skills.

Progress 10/01/12 to 09/30/13

Outputs
Target Audience: Basic and applied turfgrass scientists, athletic field managers, grounds maintenance personnel, golf course superintendents, lawn care professionals, landscape contractors, cooperative extension personnel, and industry representatives. Changes/Problems: One of the participants, Dr. Al Turgeon, is now retired and is no longer part of this project. What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided? Nothing Reported How have the results been disseminated to communities of interest? Results of this research have been disseminated to basic and applied scientists and turfgrass professionals at international, national and regional conferences, workshops, departmental seminars, intercollege seminars, and regional and local user-based outreach events. Target groups for outreach activities include MD, PA, and VA extension educators, government entities, various builders associations, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and the US EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program. Workshop attendees participate in surveys that will gauge acceptance of compost use and microclover in lawns. What do you plan to do during the next reporting period to accomplish the goals? Nothing Reported

Impacts
What was accomplished under these goals? The EPA estimates 8% of the total N load to the Chesapeake Bay watershed is from urban/suburban land, and an unknown portion of this is due to lawn fertilizers. An interdisciplinary team from MD, PA, and VA is studying how planting microclover and incorporation of compost into soil can reduce N fertilizer needs and N loading from home lawns to the Chesapeake Bay. Yard-trimmings compost was incorporated into soil via tilling, and a 95%/5% tall fescue/microclover mix, and tall fescue alone, were used to establish plots. Plots were split into two subplots, with half of each plot receiving no fertilizer and the other half receiving 49 kg ha-1 yr-1. Compost tilled into soil increased infiltration and improved quality and ground cover during the first year of the study. Tall fescue/microclover mixtures improved quality and color, but tended to dominate the stand.

Publications

  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Pruyne, D.T., C.M. Rogan, and M.J. Schlossberg. 2012. Root/shoot response of Penn A-4 creeping bentgrass to rootzone acidification by elemental sulfur. ASA, CSSA and SSSA Annual Meetings [2012]. p. 75470.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Pruyne, D.T., and M.J. Schlossberg. 2012. Rootzone pH and Penn A-4 creeping bentgrass root growth. ASA, CSSA and SSSA Annual Meetings [2012]. p. 75477.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Pruyne, D., M.J. Schlossberg, and C.M. Rogan. 2012. Root-zone pH and Penn A-4 root growth. Golf Course Manag. 80(11):98.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Schlossberg, M.J. 2012. N fertilization guidelines for Penn A4 putting greens: Because rate, form, and timing matter. ASA, CSSA and SSSA Annual Meetings [2012]. p. 75474.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Schlossberg, M.J., and J. Simmons. 2012. Point-counterpoint: BCSR vs. SLAN. SportsTurf 28(1):2431.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Serensits, T.J. and A.S. McNitt. 2012. Maintaining synthetic surface safety. SPORTSTURF Magazine. Vol. 28. No 9. pp. 10-11.
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Bonos, S.A. and D.R. Huff. 2013. Cool-Season Grasses: Biology and Breeding. In J. Stier, S.A. Bonos and B. Horgan, eds. Agronomy Monograph, Turfgrass: Biology, Use, and Management 56:591-660. American Society of Agronomy, Madison. WI. doi:10.2134/agronmonogr56.c17
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Raley, R., P.J. Landschoot, and J. Brosnan. 2013. Influence of phosphorus and nitrogen on annual bluegrass encroachment in a creeping bentgrass putting green. International Turfgrass Research Journal. 12:649-656.
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Serensits, T.J., A.S. McNitt, and J.C. Sorochan. 2013. Synthetic Turf. In J. Stier (ed.) Turfgrass  Agronomy Monograph #32 (2nd Edition). American Society of Agronomy, Madison. WI. Library of Congress 2013931617. Pp. 179-219.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Zhu, Q., M.J. Schlossberg, R.B. Bryant, and J.P. Schmidt. 2012. Creeping bentgrass putting green response to foliar nitrogen fertilization. Agron. J. 104:15891594 (doi:10.2134/agronj2012.0157).
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Bigelow, C.A., and J.E. Kaminski. 2012. Social media adoption and utilization among turfgrass science students. Proceedings of Crop Sci Soc. Annual Meeting. 2012:71954.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Fidanza, M.A., Landschoot, P.J., Kister, S., and Raign, M. 2013. Evaluation of cool-season turfgrass establishment and growth in compost-amended soil. Longwood Gardens International Trials Conference, Kennett Square, PA. http://ashs.confex.com/ashs/LG2013/general/papers/index.cgi?username=16220&password=861166
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Huff, D.R. and J.M. La Mantia. 2012. How greens-type Poa annua violates the laws of genetics. Pennsylvania Turfgrass. 1(2):14-16.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Huff, D.R., Q. Mao, and J.M. La Mantia. 2012. Genomic and phenotypic instabilities in Poa annua L. Invited oral presentation at the 7th International Symposium on Molecular Breeding of Forage and Turf. Logan, UT. Invited abstract. http://mbft.usu.edu/Proceedings2012.pdf
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2013. Combining the art with the science. Golf Course Industry. 25(7):7,29.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2013. Why push what you cant define. Golf Course Industry. 25(5):104.
  • Type: Other Status: Other Year Published: 2013 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2013. The perfect circle. Golf Course Industry. 25(3):54.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2013. Top 10 excuses (and my answers) for not continuing your education. Golf Course Industry. 25(1):46,48.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Han, K.M., and J.E. Kaminski. 2012. Influence of nitrogen, plant growth regulators, and ferrous sulfate on annual bluegrass populations. Proceedings of Crop Sci Soc. Annual Meeting. 2012:71457.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Han, K.M., and J.E. Kaminski. 2012. Influence of methiozolin rates and application timings on Poa annua populations. Proceedings of Crop Sci Soc. Annual Meeting. 2012:74069.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Huff, D.R. 2013. Choosing the right turfgrass for your clients home lawn. Pennsylvania Turfgrass. 1(4):16-18.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2012. Its not the gadget, its the user. Golf Course Industry. 24(12):18-21.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2012. Stanley J. Zontek. Golf Course Industry. 24(10):21-22.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Kaminski, J.E. 2012. Understanding Research: Sifting Through the Data. Pennsylvania Turfgrass Magazine. 1(1): 12-15.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Landschoot, P.J., Kister, S., and Fidanza, M.A. 2013. Grass species and mowing frequency influence weed encroachment ad quality in naturalized grass swards. Longwood Gardens International Trials Conference, Kennett Square, PA. http://ashs.confex.com/ashs/LG2013/general/papers/index.cgi?username=12853&password=631581
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Landschoot,, P.J., M. Carroll, J. Felton, T. Turner, M. Goatley, J. Derr, N. LaJan Barnes, S. Cohen.. 2013. Microclover and Compost as a Means of Reducing Fertilizer Use in Lawns in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. ASA, CSSA and SSSA Annual Meetings, Cincinnati, OH, Agronomy Abstracts. 2013.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Li, Y., W. Uddin, J.E. Kaminski, N.S. Dufault. 2013. Seasonal and daily patterns of Magnaporthe oryzae condia availability in gray leaf spot-perennial ryegrass pathosystem. Phytopathology. 103(6S):S2.81.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Mao, Q. and D.R. Huff. 2013. Tracing the genetic evolution of Poa annua. Pennsylvania Turfgrass. 1(4):19.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: McNitt, A.S. 2012. Preparing for fall athletic field renovation. Pennsylvania Turfgrass 1(1): 16-19.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: McNitt, A.S. 2012. State of the art - issues and technologies used on NFL playing surfaces. Pennsylvania Turfgrass. 1(2): 10-13.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: McNitt, A.S. 2012. Topdressing sports fields. Pennsylvania Turfgrass 1(3): 7-10.


Progress 10/01/11 to 09/30/12

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Poa annua L. (annual bluegrass) is one of the world's most widely distributed plant species and is ecologically and economically important both as a weed and as a forage and turfgrass. Determining the evolutionary origin of Poa anuua would provide valuable insight into understanding its wide distribution and extreme phenotypic variability. The objective of the present study is to use single copy nuclear DNA sequences trx and CDO504 and chrolopast sequences ndhF and trnTLF to discern the evolutionary origin of Poa annua from all other possible origins. Here we show that the homeologous nuclear DNA sequences present within Poa annua are inseparable from their respective orthologs within Poa supina Schrad. (supina bluegrass) and Poa infi rma Kunth (weak bluegrass) and therefore could not have been contributed by any other Poa species. We confirm that Poa infirma served as the maternal parent and provide evidence that at least two interspecific hybridizations gave rise to Poa annua. Our data also suggest that the polyploid origin of Poa annua would be considered recent on an evolutionary time scale. Once the parental species of Poa annua have been identified, we were able to reexamine previously published cytological data and present evidence for the genomic designations of Poa infirma as II and Poa supina as SS, making the genomic constitution of the allotetraploid Poa annua as IISS. The results of this research place new emphasis on chromosomal rearrangements that likely took place during the evolution origin of Poa annua. PARTICIPANTS: D.R. Huff, P. Landschoot, M. Schlossberg, J. Kaminski, and A. McNitt (PIs) are responsible for directing and coordinating all aspects of research and dissemination of results including grant writing, budget management, report writing, industrial and scientific seminar preparation and manuscript writing. J. La Mantia was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the genetic basis of greens-type Poa annua evolution. Currently a Post-doctoral Researcher at University of Manitoba. Q. Mao is a Ph.D Candidate in Plant Biology working under the direction of Huff. TARGET AUDIENCES: D.R. Huff, P. Landschoot, M. Schlossberg, J. Kaminski, and A. McNitt (PIs) are responsible for directing and coordinating all aspects of research and dissemination of results including grant writing, budget management, report writing, industrial and scientific seminar preparation and manuscript writing. J. La Mantia was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the genetic basis of greens-type Poa annua evolution. Currently a Post-doctoral Researcher at University of Manitoba. Q. Mao is a Ph.D Candidate in Plant Biology working under the direction of Huff. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Results of this research have been disseminated to basic and applied scientists at international, national and regional conferences, workshops, departmental seminars, intercollege seminars, and regional and local user-based outreach events. Our research in the evolutionary biology of Poa annua has changed the knowledge base of Poa annua adaptation and has potential to increase our understanding of managing Poa annua as a turfgrass or as an invasive weed.

Publications

  • Huff, D. R. and J. M. La Mantia. 2012. Greens-type Poa annua violates the laws of genetics. USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research 11(9):1-7.
  • Landschoot, P. J. and B. Liu. 2012 Late fall fertilization of turf. Pennsylvania Turfgrass 1(1):24-25.
  • Landschoot, P. J., M. Fidanza, and S. Kister. 2012. Grass species and mowing frequency influence weed encroachment and quality in naturalized grass swards. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meetings. Cincinnati, OH. AnMtgsAbsts2012. http://scisoc.confex.com/scisoc/2012am/webprogram/Paper73644.html.
  • Liu, B., P. J. Landschoot, and T. Harpster. 2012. Influence of phosphorus in starter fertilizer on establishment of tall fescue turf. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meetings. Cincinnati, OH. AnMtgsAbsts2012. http://scisoc.confex.com/scisoc/2012am/webprogram/Paper73642.html.


Progress 10/01/10 to 09/30/11

Outputs
OUTPUTS: The turfgrass species Poa annua L. is most prevalent as an invasive, annual weed in managed turfs. Conversely, the dwarf perennial greens-type biotype produces a high turf quality with great utility to the golf-course industry. In the past 60 yr, several attempts have been made to breed a commercial cultivar of the greens-type biotype with little sustained success. Here, we characterize the morphological traits of the greens-type phenotype and investigate its inheritance and stability through genetic crosses. The results indicate that the greens-type phenotype links single-branching inflorescences with reductions in culm length, tiller length, leaf length, and panicle length to a single genetic mechanism. However, in advanced-generation progeny, the segregation of the greens-type phenotype does not conform to the disomic single-gene inheritance model. Tetrasomic inheritance, gene complementation, and quantitative inheritance models are also presented. These results, along with the observation of somatic reversions, suggest that the greens-type phenotype is unstable and may be regulated by an epigenetic mechanism. In the North American native buffalograss, we showed that the fungal parasite, pistil smut, induces development of female sex organs (pistils) in flowers of male buffalograss potentially by down-regulating a putative female-suppressor gene, BdTs2, homologous to maize Tasselseed2 (ZmTs2). Expression analysis and in situ hybridization showed that BdTs2 expression is down-regulated by pistil smut infection, which corresponds to the presence of pistils in flowers otherwise destined to become unisexual male. These results provide a potential molecular basis for pistil smut induced hermaphroditism in male buffalograss. PARTICIPANTS: David R. Huff, P. Landschoot, M. Schlossberg (PIs) was responsible for directing and coordinating all aspects of research and dissemination of results including grant writing, budget management, report writing, industrial and scientific seminar preparation and manuscript writing. T. Aamlid, visiting scientist from Scandinavia, perform the hands on research for snow mold resistance screening in Poa annua and was the principle author of our manuscript on this subject. J.T. Brosnan is a former Ph.D. student of McNitt and is currently an Assistant Professor at University of Tennesse. A. Chandra was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the induced hermaphroditism in buffalograss. Currently Assistant Professor at Texas A&M University. A. Chandra, B. Pond, J. Reinert, and J. LaMantia comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and Postdoctoral Fellows located in Texas. E. Lyons (PSU) was Huff's former Ph.D. graduate student researching the root biology of greens-type Poa annua. Currently Assistant Professor at University of Guelph. T. Delvalle is Landschoot's current M.S. graduate student, examining the effects of dew removal and mowing on fungicide efficacy. M. Fidanza (PSU) is a faculty member at Penn State Berks campus. He currently teaches courses in turfgrass management and soils and performs research on turfgrass pest management. J. La Mantia was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the genetic basis of greens-type Poa annua evolution. Currently a Post-doctoral Researcher at Texas A&M University. J. Dionne, S. Rochefort, Y. Castonguay, Y. Desjardins, and A. Bertrand comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and graduate students located in Canada. S. Mitra, M. Seaman, M. Fam, R. Plumb, A. Malazian, D. McKee, R. Green, and K. Davidson comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and graduate students located in California. T.J. Serensits is a Ph.D Candidate in Agronomy working under the direction of McNitt. TARGET AUDIENCES: Basic and applied turfgrass scientists, public and applied trufgrass breeders, commercial turfgrass managers, and research scientists in biology, plant pathology, and ecology. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Results of this research have been disseminated to basic and applied scientists at international, national and regional conferences, workshops, departmental seminars, intercollege seminars, and regional and local user-based outreach events. Our research in biotic and abiotic stress tolerance and phenotypic stability of Poa annua has changed the knowledge base of Poa annua adaptation and has potential to increase the utility of Poa annua as a turfgrass. Our work in host-parasite interactions details for the first time a potential molecular basis for pistil smut induced hermaphroditism in male buffalograss

Publications

  • Bonos, S. A. and D. R. Huff. 2011. Cool-Season Turfgrass Breeding. In J. Stier, S.A. Bonos and B. Horgan, eds. Turfgrass Monograph, 3rd Edition. ASA (In Press).
  • Chandra, A., J. A. Reinert, J. LaMantia, J. B. Pond, and D. R. Huff. 2011. Genetic variability in southern chinch bug (Blissus insularis) populations assessed using AFLP analysis. J. Insect Science (In Press).
  • Delvalle, T., P. J. Landschoot, and J. E. Kaminski. 2011. Effects of dew removal and mowing frequency on fungicide efficacy for dollar spot control. Plant Disease (In Press).
  • La Mantia, J. M. and D. R. Huff. 2011. Instability of the greens-type phenotype in Poa annua L. Crop Sci. 51:1784-1792. http://dx.doi.org/10.2135/cropsci2010.10.0580.
  • Lyons, E., P. Landschoot, and D. R. Huff. 2011. Root distribution and tiller densities of creeping bentgrass cultivars and greens-type annual bluegrass cultivars in a putting green. HortScience (In Press).
  • Mao, Q. and D. R. Huff. 2011. Evolutionary origin of Poa annua L. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meetings. San Antonio, TX. AnMtgsAbsts2011.101-20.
  • Serensits, T. J., A. S. McNitt, and D. M. Petrunak. 2011. Improving Surface Stability on Natural Turfgrass Athletic Fields. J. Sports Eng. and Tech. 225(2):85-92.
  • Serensits, T. J., A. S. McNitt, and D. M. Petrunak. 2011. Human Health Issues on Synthetic Turf in the USA. J. Sports Eng. and Tech. 225(3):139-146.
  • Brosnan, J. T., A. S. McNitt, and T. J. Serensits. 2011. Effects of surface conditions on baseball playing surface pace. J. Testing & Evaluation 39:375-380.
  • Serensits, T. J., A. S. McNitt, and J. C. Sorochan. 2011. Synthetic Turf. In Turfgrass - Agronomy Monograph #32 (2nd Edition) J. Stier (ed.). American Society of Agronomy. Madison. WI. (In Press).


Progress 10/01/09 to 09/30/10

Outputs
OUTPUTS: We found that some PSU cultivars have a great potential to be used on golf course putting greens even when grown under warmer growing conditions like Southern California. We found that greens-type Poa annua possesses moderate to good salinity tolerance during seed germination and vegetative growth relative to other cool-season turfgrass species and has potential to be used on golf courses with moderate salt problems affecting turf establishment and maintenance. We found that the dwarf greens-type phenotype is consistent with auxin signaling mutants in Arabidopsis and is linked to reduced expression of an Auxin F-Box like gene. In the North American native buffalograss, we showed that the fungal parasite, pistil smut, induces development of female sex organs (pistils) in flowers of male buffalograss potentially by down-regulating a putative female-suppressor gene, BdTs2, homologous to maize Tasselseed2 (ZmTs2). Expression analysis and in situ hybridization showed that BdTs2 expression is down-regulated by pistil smut infection, which corresponds to the presence of pistils in flowers otherwise destined to become unisexual male. These results provide a potential molecular basis for pistil smut induced hermaphroditism in male buffalograss. Turfgrass diseases impair quality and function of lawns and sports turf, and sometimes require chemical control measures. One control option for controlling Pythium blight and anthracnose diseases is the use of phosphonate fungicides. Studies on the efficacy of different phosphonate fungicides for Pythium blight and anthracnose control have been completed and summarized. Treatments included active ingredients and formulations of phosphonate fungicides applied at equivalent rates of phosphorous acid, the active compound in all phosphonate fungicides. Although Pythium blight control varied among growing seasons, no efficacy differences were found among phosphonate active ingredient or formulation. Chipco Signature was the only phosphonate fungicide that provided some control of anthracnose, but complete control was not achieved. The formulation of Chipco Signature probably plays an important in suppressing this disease. In vitro studies demonstrated inhibitory effects on several different Pythium species, but no inhibitory effects were observed on Colletotrichum cerele, the cause of anthracnose disease. Field studies were concluded that elucidated the influence of S. homoeocarpa sensitivity to three commonly used fungicides on the suppression of dollar spot on golf courses in the northeast. These data in addition to recently published information related to the impact of application technology on dollar spot control were used to assist golf course superintendents better manage their disease issue with less or more effective fungicides. Extension efforts to better update turfgrass managers with real time information related to disease and pest problems in their region were established through the use of blogs and other social media outlets. The impact of which was identified using online analytics software and reported in the Journal of Extension. PARTICIPANTS: David R. Huff, P. Landschoot, M. Schlossberg (PIs) was responsible for directing and coordinating all aspects of research and dissemination of results including grant writing, budget management, report writing, industrial and scientific seminar preparation and manuscript writing. T. Aamlid, visiting scientist from Scandinavia, perform the hands on research for snow mold resistance screening in Poa annua and was the principle author of our manuscript on this subject. J.T. Brosnan is a former Ph.D. student of McNitt and is currently an Assistant Professor at University of Tennesse. A. Chandra was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the induced hermaphroditism in buffalograss. Currently Assistant Professor at Texas A&M University. A. Chandra, B. Pond, J. Reinert, and J. LaMantia comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and Postdoctoral Fellows located in Texas. J. Dai (PSU) was Huff's former M.S. graduate student researching the salinity tolerance of greens-type Poa annua. Currently, Ph.D. candidate at PSU. T. Delvalle is Landschoot's current M.S. graduate student, examining the effects of dew removal and mowing on fungicide efficacy. M. Fidanza (PSU) is a faculty member at Penn State Berks campus. He currently teaches courses in turfgrass management and soils and performs research on turfgrass pest management. J. La Mantia was Huff's Ph.D. student researching the genetic basis of greens-type Poa annua evolution. Currently a Post-doctoral Researcher at Texas A&M University. J. Dionne, S. Rochefort, Y. Castonguay, Y. Desjardins, and A. Bertrand comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and graduate students located in Canada. S. Mitra, M. Seaman, M. Fam, R. Plumb, A. Malazian, D. McKee, R. Green, and K. Davidson comprise a collaborating group of research scientists, technicians and graduate students located in California. T.J. Serensits is a Ph.D Candidate in Agronomy working under the direction of McNitt. TARGET AUDIENCES: Basic and applied turfgrass scientists, public and applied turfgrass breeders, commercial turfgrass managers, and research scientists in biology, plant pathology, and ecology. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Results of this research have been disseminated to basic and applied scientists at international, national and regional conferences, workshops, departmental seminars, intercollege seminars, and regional and local user-based outreach events. Our research in biotic and abiotic stress tolerance of Poa annua has changed the knowledge base of Poa annua adaptation and has potential to increase the utility of Poa annua as a turfgrass. Our work in host-parasite interactions details for the first time a potential molecular basis for pistil smut induced hermaphroditism in male buffalograss. The findings of this research revealed that all phosphonate active ingredients and formulations have the same efficacy on Pythium blight. Thus, golf course and sports turf managers can use the most cost-effective product for disease control. With respect to anthracnose, Chipco Signature is the only phosphonate product that has any efficacy. Golf course managers should use this product with other fungicides for the most effective control of anthracnose.

Publications

  • Cook, P. J., P. J. Landschoot, and M. J. Schlossberg. 2009. Suppression of anthracnose basal rot symptoms and improved putting green quality with phosphonate fungicides. International Turfgrass Society Research Journal (11):181-194.
  • Cook, P. J., P. J. Landschoot, and M. J. Schlossberg. 2009. Inhibition of Pythium spp. and suppression of Pythium blight of turfgrasses with phosphonate fungicides. Plant Disease (93):809-814.
  • Dai, J., D. R. Huff, and M. Schlossberg. 2009. Salinity effects on seed germination and vegetative growth of greens-type Poa annua relative to other cool-season turfgrass species. Crop Science 49:1-8.
  • Dionne, J., S. Rochefort, Y. Castonguay, D. R. Huff, Y. Desjardins, and A. Bertrand. 2010. Variability for freezing tolerance among 42 ecotypes of green-type annual bluegrass (Poa annua L.). Crop Science 50:321-336.
  • Huff, D. R. 2010. Chapter 15: Bluegrasses. In B. Boller, U. K. Posselt and F. Veronesi, eds. Handbook of Plant Breeding: Fodder Crops and Amenity Grasses. Vol. 5. Springer Publishing. Pp. 345-379. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0760-8_15.
  • Moody, D. R. and M. J. Schlossberg. 2010. Soil water repellency index prediction using the molarity of ethanol droplet test. Vadose Zone J. 9:(In Press).
  • Putman, A. I., J. Jung, and J. E. Kaminski. 2010. Geographic distribution of fungicide-insensitive Sclerotinia homoeocarpa isolates from golf courses in the Northeastern United States. Plant Dis. 94:186-195.
  • Patton, A. J. and J. E. Kaminski. 2010. Tracking the impact of your web-based content. Journal of Extension 48(4):Article 4TOT1. http://www.joe.org/joe/2010august/tt1.php/.
  • Chandra, A., B. Pond, J. Reinert, D. Huff, and J. LaMantia. 2009. Molecular Characterization of Different Biotypes of the Southern Chinch Bug Affecting St. Augustinegrass. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meetings. Pittsburgh, PA.(Abstract #55717).
  • Dai, J., M. J. Schlossberg, and A. J. Turgeon. 2009. Integration of iron into N fertility regimes for regulation of fertilizer and water requirements of Penn A-series creeping bentgrasses (Agrostis stolonifera L.). ASA-CSSA-SSSA Intl. Meeting. Pittsburgh. Nov. (Abstract #52671).
  • Dai, J., M. J. Schlossberg, and A. J. Turgeon. 2009. Role of foliar iron in alleviating root growth inhibition of 'Penn A-4' creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) induced by intensive N fertilization. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Intl. Meeting. Pittsburgh. Nov. (Abstract #52685).
  • Dai, J., M. J. Schlossberg, and A. J. Turgeon. 2009. The relationship among ball roll distance, clipping yield, and N fertility. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Intl. Meeting. Pittsburgh. Nov. (Abstract #52691).
  • Huff, D. R. 2009. Evaluating methods for vegetative propagation and enhancement of seed production of greens-type Poa annua cultivars. 2008 USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research Summary. p. 47.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Pythium spp. selectively attacking Poa. Penn State Turfgrass Blog. July 16. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/07/pythium-spp-selectively-attacking -poa.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Shout out to cooler temps and those nice folks in the south. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. September 14. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/09/shout-out-to-cooler-temps-an d-those.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Healthy grass makes weak grass look worse. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. August 23. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/08/healthy-grass-makes-weak-gra ss-look.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Lower temps may mean MORE turf diseases. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. August 16. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/08/lower-temps-may-mean-more-tu rf-diseases.html.
  • Aamlid, T. S., P. J. Landschoot, and D. R. Huff. 2009. Tolerance to simulated ice encasement and Microdochium nivale in USA selections of greens-type Poa annua. Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica Section B-Soil and Plant Science 59:170-178. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09064710802093854.
  • Brosnan, J. T., A. S. McNitt, and T. J. Serensits. 2010. Effects of varying surface conditions on baseball field playing surface pace. J. Testing and Eval. (In Press).
  • Brosnan, J. T., A. S. McNitt, and T. J. Serensits. 2009. Effects of varying surface conditions on the hardness and traction of baseball field playing surfaces. Int. Turf. Soc. Res. J. 11:1053-1065.
  • Chandra, A. and D. R. Huff. 2010. A fungal parasite regulates a putative female-suppressor gene homologous to maize Tasselseed2 and causes induced hermaphroditism in male buffalograss. Molecular Plant Microbe Interaction 23:239-250.
  • Kaminski, J..E. 2010. Great conference, but a tough spot to watch hockey. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. March 8. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/03/great-conference-but-tough-s pot-to.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. I hope you don't fly Delta. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. February 15. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/02/i-hope-you-dont-fly-delta.ht ml.
  • Kaminski, J..E. 2010. Coldest winter in a long time. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. February 1. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/02/coldest-winter-in-long-time. html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. It's conference season. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. January 19. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/01/its-conference-season.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. and M. A. Fidanza. 2010. Dollar spot severity as influenced by fungicide mode of activity and spray nozzle. USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research. 9(3):1-12. February 1.
  • Kaminski, J. E. and M. A. Fidanza. 2010. Do spray nozzle type and fungicide mode of action affect dollar spot control Golf Course Management 78(9):94-99.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2009. Snow in the Northeast, dormant turf in Dallas. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. December 21. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2009/12/snow-in-northeast-dormant-tu rf-in.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2009. Turf management in the UK and Europe. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. November 30. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2009/11/turf-management-in-uk-europe .html.
  • Kaminski, J..E. 2009. The disease triangle (part 2): The host. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. November 16. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2009/11/disease-triangle-part-2-host .html.
  • Kaminski, J..E. 2009. The turf nerds go to... Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. November 2. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2009/11/turf-nerds-go-to.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2009. Cooler temps and Microdochium patch. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. October 5. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2009/10/cooler-temps-and-microdochiu m-patch.html.
  • La Mantia, J. and D. Huff. 2009. Suppression of An Auxin F-Box Like Gene Is Linked to the 'Greens-Type' Phenotype in Poa annua L. ASA-CSSA-SSSA International Meetings. Pittsburgh, PA. (Abstract #54656).
  • Landschoot, P. J. and M. Fidanza. 2009. Comparison of chlorothalonil, propiconazole, and iprodione products for control of dollar spot and brown patch diseases. USGA 2008 Turfgrass and Environmental Research Summary. Pg. 68.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2009. Leaf spot look-a-likes. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. August 17. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/ also on http://www.personal.psu.edu/asm4/blogs/pennstateturf/.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2009. New Jersey considers fertilizer restrictions for turf. PennStateTurf. November 18. http://www.personal.psu.edu/asm4/blogs/pennstateturf/2009/11/new-jers ey-considers-fertilizer-restrictions-for-turf.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2009. Late fall fertilization of lawns. PennStateTurf. November 24. http://www.personal.psu.edu/asm4/blogs/pennstateturf/2009/11/late-fal l-fertilization-of-lawns.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J., M. Fidanza, and T. Delvalle. 2009. Comparison of chlorothalonil, propiconazole, and iprodione products for control of dollar spot and brown patch diseases. Three Rivers Green (24)3:9-10.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Moss is greening up in PA lawns. Penn State Turfgrass. March 24. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/03/moss-is-greening-up-in-pa-lawns.h tml.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Forsythias are blooming and thoughts turn to...crabgrass. March 31. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/03/forsythias-are-blooming-and-thoug hts.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Bittercress. Penn State Turfgrass. April 6. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/04/weed-of-week-bittercress.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Melting turf and the turf pathology meetings. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. August 9. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/08/melting-turf-and-turf-pathol ogy.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Pathologist or Psychologist. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. August 2. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/08/pathologist-or-psychologist. html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Just a brief update. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. July 20. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/07/just-brief-update.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Spray, but watch the burn. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. July 5. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/07/spray-but-watch-burn.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Getting the discussion going. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. June 21. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/06/getting-discussion-going.htm l.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Northeast turf disease and a call to @ThePCreamer. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. June 14. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/06/northeast-turf-diseases-and- call-to.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. How big of a turf nerd do you have to be... Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. June 7. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/06/how-big-of-turf-nerd-do-you- have-to-be.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Turf diseases showing their muscle. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. May 31. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/05/turf-diseases-showing-their- muscle.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Let's get this season started. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. May 17. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/05/lets-get-this-season-started .html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Leaf spot, Waitea, and growt.. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. May 3. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/05/leaf-spot-waitea-and-growth. html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. The trip from hell and current disease issues. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. April 26. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/04/trip-from-hell-and-current-d isease.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. It's getting Hot in Here... Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. April 5. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/04/more-about-things-other-than -diseases.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Microdochium patch kicking in. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. March 22. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/03/microdochium-patch-kicking-i n.html.
  • Kaminski, J. E. 2010. Cold and wet and that damn groundhog. Turfgrass Disease Updates for Golf Courses. March 15. http://turfdiseases.blogspot.com/2010/03/cold-and-wet-and-that-damn-g roundhog.html.
  • Mitra, S. S., M. Seaman, M. Fam, R. Plumb, A. Malazian, D. McKee, R. Green, K. Davidson, and D. R. Huff. 2009. Evaluating new Poa annua cultivars under warmer growing conditions. USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research 8(10):1-10. May 15. http://usgatero.msu.edu/v08/n10.pdf.
  • Rogan, C., and M. J. Schlossberg. 2010. Effects of late season N/PGR applications on carbohydrate balance and spring green up of cool season turfgrasses. NE Branch of Crop, Soil, and Agronomy Societies of America Meeting. Ithaca, NY. June. Abstract Bulletin. p. 11. http://www.crops.org/files/membership/branches/northeastern/2010-nebc sa-abstracts.pdf.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Turfgrass deemed largest 'crop' in Chesapeake Bay watershed. Penn State Turfgrass. June 30. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/06/turfgrass-deemed-largest-crop-in. html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. When lawns turf brown in July, the best thing to do is..nothing. Penn State Turfgrass. July 6. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/07/when-lawns-turn-brown-in-july-bes t.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Studying grass to save gas. Penn State Turfgrass. July 20. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/07/studying-grass-to-save-gas.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Wet wilt and heat-related injury produce turf loss on putting greens in PA. Penn State Turfgrass. July 26. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/07/wet-wilt-and-heat-related-injury. html.
  • McNitt, A. S. 2009. Scheduling Turfgrass Management. Between the Lines. Quarterly newsletter produced by the Keystone Athletic Field Manager's Organization. Spring. p. 7.
  • Schlossberg, M.J., J. K. Kruse, and W. P. Miller. 2009. Turfgrass response to acid subsoil treatment by flue gas desulfurization gypsum or traditional calcium amendments. Invited for Symposium-Gypsum Use for Enhancing Agricultural Production and for Environmental Improvement. ASA-CSSA-SSSA Intl. Meeting, Pittsburgh. Nov. (Abstract #51955).
  • La Mantia, J. 2009. Genomic analysis of life history traits, disease resistance and evolutionary origins of the greens-type Poa annua L. Ph.D. Thesis. The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA. 133 pp.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Creeping speedwell. Penn State Turfgrass. April 12. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/04/weed-of-week-creeping-speedwell.h tml.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. What is an "acre furrow slice" of soil PennStateTurf. April 13. http://www.personal.psu.edu/asm4/blogs/pennstateturf/2010/04/.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Roughstalk bluegrass (Poa trivialis). Penn State Turfgrass. April 24. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/04/weed-of-week-roughstalk-bluegrass -poa.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Establishing a new lawn. http://cropsoil.psu.edu/turf/extension/factsheets/lawn-establishment.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Daisy or annual fleabane. Penn State Turfgrass. May 9. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/05/weed-of-week-daisy-or-annual-flea bane.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Yellow hawkweed. Penn State Turfgrass. May 22. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/05/weed-of-week-yellow-hawkweed-hier acium.html.
  • Landschoot, P. J. 2010. Weed of the week: Common groundsel. Penn State Turfgrass. June 7. http://psuturf.blogspot.com/2010/06/weed-of-week-common-groundsel-sen ecio.html.
  • McNitt, A. S. 2010. Injury and Traction Measurement on Playing Surfaces. July 26. http://www.personal.psu.edu/asm4/blogs/pennstateturf/.