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K-State Turfgrass

Month: June 2017

Influence of Tall Fescue Baseball Infield Mowing Height on Ground Ball Speed

Influence of Tall Fescue Baseball Infield Mowing Height on Ground Ball Speed

( By Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension and Gage Knudson, KSU Turfgrass Undergraduate Research Assistant)

Summary. Athletic field conditions have shown to influence playability. Results of ball-roll speed studies can be used to predict success of infield hits. Field trials were conducted at Rocky Ford Turfgrass Research Center to determine the influence of tall fescue baseball infield mowing height on ground ball speed and batter on-base success. Mowing heights of 2.5, 5, and 7.6 cm resulted in 1.77, 2.08 and 1.88 s ground ball times, respectively.

Rationale. Tall fescue [Schedonorus arundinaceus (Schreb.)] is a drought tolerant turfgrass species commonly used as a baseball infield playing surface. Cultural management practice studies on athletic surfaces have shown direct influences on playability. Minimal information exists on the influence of infield mowing height and ball-roll speed. Results of ball-roll speed studies can be used to predict success of infield hits.

Objectives. Determine the influence of tall fescue baseball infield mowing height on ground ball speed and batter on-base success.

Study Description. Research trials were initiated on November 21, 2016 at the Rocky Ford Research Center (RF) in Manhattan, KS to determine the influence of tall fescue baseball infield mowing height on ground ball speed and batter on-base success. Research trials were conducted on 30.5 m long simulated tall fescue infield. Two experimental runs were conducted on three different infield mowing height treatments; 2.5, 5, and 7.6 cm. Six individual replications of a simulated ground ball were applied to each infield condition and experimental run. Ground balls were applied with a pitching machine set to 112.6 kph. Simulated ground balls were timed in seconds (s) from simulated pitched ball and bat contact (insertion into machine) to baseball fielder location (30.5 m distance). Successful infield hits were calculated using constant athletic ability data and infield ball-roll data. Data was subjected to ANOVA in SAS and means were separated according to Fisher’s protected LSD at 0.05 significance level.

Results. Mowing heights of 2.5, 5, and 7.6 cm resulted in 1.77, 2.08 and 1.88 s ground ball times, respectively (Figure 1). Utilizing ground ball speed results, researchers were able to predict that a simulated batter, if a ground ball was hit to the shortstop position (30.5 m distance), would result in an unsuccessful at bat if a tall fescue infield was mown at 2.5 cm and successful if mown at 5 and 7.6 cm, utilizing consistent player athletic ability data (Figure 1 and Table 1).

The Effect of Human Insect Repellents on Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne) Growth and Recovery

The Effect of Human Insect Repellents on Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne) Growth and Recovery

(By Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension and Peyton South, KSU Turfgrass Undergraduate Research Assistant)

Summary. Turfgrass damage has been observed from misapplications of human insect repellents. Minimal research has been conducted to determine the cause of the damage. Greenhouse research trials were conducted to survey various human insect repellents on turfgrass growth and recovery. Insect repellents resulted in a wide range of damage. No common trend was observed although research trial shows possible repellents to be utilized around turfgrass that will minimize turfgrass injury.

Rationale. Human insect repellents containing diethyltoluamide (DEET) commonly damage turfgrass due to non-target application. Common visual damage results in two areas of healthy growing turfgrass in the shape of footprints with necrotic and chlorotic turfgrass surrounding. Damage results in unacceptable turfgrass quality and playability. Minimal research has been conducted to explore the influence of human insect repellents on turfgrass injury and recovery.

Damage from bug spray misapplication to turfgrass.

Objectives. Evaluate the influence of human insect repellants on Perennial Ryegrass (Lolium perenne) growth and recovery.

Study Description. Research trials were initiated in November of 2016 at the Throckmorton Plant Sciences Center Greenhouses in Manhattan, KS to determine the influence of human insect repellents on perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) growth and recovery. Perennial ryegrass was established in 10 by 10 cm pots at 387 kg ha-1, maintained at 4.4 cm and were irrigated to prevent drought stress. Greenhouse environment was a 12 hr photoperiod at 15.5°C/ 22.2°C (night/day). Insect repellent treatments were applied to perennial ryegrass plants arranged in a randomized complete block design with 4 replications. Treatments included 9 insect repellents and a non-treated control for comparison (Table 1). Five treatments contained the active ingredient DEET. Other commonly used insect repellents were also included for comparison. Collected data included visual percent injury on a 0%- 100% scale, where 10% represented maximum acceptable injury. Data was subjected to ANOVA in SAS and means were separated according to Fisher’s protected LSD at 0.05 significance level.

Results. All treatments except the control resulted in at least 6% turfgrass injury 1 day after application (DAA). Repel Max (40% DEET) and Off Active (15% DEET) resulted in 68% and 30% injury, respectively 21 DAA. At 21 DAA all other treatments resulted in turfgrass injury similar to the non-treated. Insect repellants with the same active ingredient percentage resulted in various perennial ryegrass injury and recovery. Although no different in % DEET, Off Active and Off Family resulted in 30% and 0% injury, 21 DAA, respectively. Results also demonstrate that permanent non-target turfgrass injury could occur if Off Active and Repel Max are applied as a human insect repellent. Further greenhouse and field trials are needed to confirm results as well as determine if other non-labeled ingredients influence turfgrass injury.

Always remember to READ THE LABEL for the correct rate, turfgrass tolerance, and specific instructions before application!!!

***Mention of trade names or commercial products in this article is solely for identification purposes and does not imply recommendation or endorsement, nor is criticism implied of similar products not mentioned by Kansas State University.***

Don’t forget to follow me on twitter @KSUTurf.

Also, visit our facebook page www.facebook.com/KSUTurf

Effect of Dormant ‘MidIron’ Bermudagrass Colorant Applications on Clothing Blemishing

Effect of Dormant ‘MidIron’ Bermudagrass Colorant Applications on Clothing Blemishing

(By Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension and Daniele McFadden, KSU Turfgrass Undergraduate Research Assistant)

Summary. Minimal research exists on potential clothing blemishing when athletes contact turfgrass applied with colorants. Field trials were conducted to test the effect of turfgrass colorant applications on clothing blemishing if a athlete is to come in contact with the playing surface. Turfgrass colorants will adhere to turfgrass leaf blades and do not blemish clothing. Although, tested turfgrass pigments did result in significant blemishing of clothing.

Rationale. Bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon) is a warm-season turfgrass used on athletic fields in the Midwest. Although a desirable turfgrass species for athletic fields it fails to maintain acceptable green color during winter. Turfgrass colorants have been utilized to maintain acceptable green turf color through dormancy periods. Athletes of all ages play on sports fields where colorants have been applied. Extensive research has explored turfgrass colorants on turfgrass quality but minimal research exists on potential clothing blemishing when athletes contact turfgrass applied with colorants.

Objectives. The objective of this research was to determine if turfgrass pigments and paints blemish athletic clothing after the recommended dry time.

Study Description. Field research trials were initiated Feb. 16, 2017 at Rocky Ford Turfgrass Research Center in Manhattan, KS on dormant ‘MidIron’ bermudagrass maintained at 3.8 cm. Treatments were applied to 1.5 by 1.5 m plots arranged in a randomized complete block design with four replications. Treatments consisted of three paints (Wintergreen Plus, Green Lawnger, Endurant Premium), one pigment (Envy) and a non-treated control for comparison. All colorant treatments were applied at 1:6 (v:v) dilution in 1,234 L ha-1 spray volume. After recommended drying time (4 hrs), a white cotton t-shirt was pulled 1.5 m across the plot weighted down with 11.4 kg. Digital image analysis was used to determine percent blemishing of t-shirt area. Data was subjected to ANOVA in SAS and means were separated according to Fisher’s Protected LSD at 0.05 significance level.

Results. Envy (turfgrass pigment) resulted in the highest blemished clothing percentage (60%). All other treatments were no different than the non-treated (Figure 2). Results demonstrate that the tested turfgrass paints safely adhere to the turfgrass canopy and do not blemish athletic clothing.

Figure 1. Dormant colorant field trial plots located at Rocky Ford Turfgrass Research Center in Manhattan, KS.

Always remember to READ THE LABEL for the correct rate, turfgrass tolerance, and specific instructions before application!!!

***Mention of trade names or commercial products in this article is solely for identification purposes and does not imply recommendation or endorsement, nor is criticism implied of similar products not mentioned by Kansas State University.***

Don’t forget to follow me on twitter @KSUTurf.

Also, visit our facebook page www.facebook.com/KSUTurf

New Turfgrass Publications

(By Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension)

The KSU Turfgrass Team has been busy updating turfgrass extension publications.  Some of the most recent publications include benefits of a healthy turf, lawn fertilization guide and turfgrass mowing.

Enjoy the updated publications!

Benefits of Heathy Turfgrass

Environmental, economic, health, and safety benefits of turfgrass found in lawns, athletic fields, parks, and roadsides.

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Item.aspx?catId=545&pubId=12800

Lawn Fertilizing Guide

This guide helps homeowners determine how much fertilizer to apply to keep lawn vigorous and healthy.

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Item.aspx?catId=545&pubId=10639

Turfgrass Mowing: Professional Series

Mowing basics for professional turfgrass managers. Information on mowing height and frequency, clippings, mowing pattern, mower operation, blade sharpening, mower selection, maintenance, and safety

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Item.aspx?catId=545&pubId=712

Mowing Your Lawn

Mowing basics for homeowners. Includes information on mowing height and frequency, pattern, mower operation, maintenance, and safety.

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Item.aspx?catId=545&pubId=615

Recycling Grass Clippings

Information for homeowners on why and how to recycle grass clippings.

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Item.aspx?catId=545&pubId=701

 

For more turfgrass publications visit the KSRE Bookstore.

https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/Category.aspx?id=528&catId=545&Page=1

Hope to see you August 3rd at the KSU Turfgrass Field Day

(By Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension)

The next Turfgrass Field Day will be held on Thursday, August 3, 2017 at the John C. Pair Horticultural Research Center, Wichita.

The KTF Turf Field Days are a great way to see and learn about the turfgrass research at K-State first hand. The events are held annually in the summer at the turfgrass research locations of Kansas State University.

The Field Day qualifies for recertification credit hr for commercial pesticide applicators.

Field Day Brochure – http://www.kansasturfgrassfoundation.com/uploads/8/9/7/3/8973595/2017turffielddayprogramcolor-web.pdf 

You can now Register and Pay Online at  https://2017turffieldday.eventbrite.com
or you can register by downloading, printing, and mailing go to the 2017 Field Day brochure.

Exhibitors can get more information from the Exhibitor Registration Form.

Schedule of the 2017 Field Day 
8:00 a.m. Registration (coffee, tea, donuts)
Visit Exhibitors
8:45         Welcome
9:00        Tour Highlights:
*Turfgrass Weed Control Update
*Turf & Ornamental Diseases
*Bermudagrass & Zoysiagrass Cultivar Selection
*Using Kansas Mesonet to Imrpove Accuracy in Landscape Irrigation
*Right Plant, FROM the Right Place
* Prairie Star Flowers
*Tall Fescue NTEP
*Turf & Ornamental Insect Control
11:30       Lunch

After Lunch

  • Equipment Demonstrations

If you have any questions, please contact,
    Christy Dipman 
1712 Claflin, 2021 Throckmorton Hall
Manhattan, Kansas 66506
Phone: (785) 532-6173
Fax: (785) 532-6949
Email: Christy

Landscape and Garden Bugs

(Posted by Jared Hoyle, KSU Turfgrass Research and Extension)

K-State Horticultural Entomologist Raymond Cloyd covers a variety of insects now at work in home lawns, landscapes in gardens, including bagworms infesting evergreens, emerald ash borers attacking ash trees, and squash bugs feeding on garden cucurbit crops.

Click the link below for K-State Research and Extension Agriculture Today Radio Program hosted by Eric Atkinson.

 

Take Advantage of Breaks in Summer Heat for Putting Green Management

By Jack Fry

Looks like we’ve got a short-term period of cooler temperatures over the next several days.  Midsummer heat relief is good for us, and it’s also a great time to do some of the cultural practices we often avoid during midsummer heat.

Creeping bentgrass and annual bluegrass don’t like the heat, and really don’t appreciate it when we implement certain cultural practices during hot weather.  On greens that have shallow roots and experience indirect heat stress, any kind of stress brought about with cultural practices can sometimes be the “straw that breaks the camel’s back.”  Consider implementing some of the following during short stretches of cool weather:

1) Solid tine aerification.  Opening up the surface of the green can help get oxygen to roots and prevent a “sealing off” of the surface that can arise when organic matter accumulates.

2) Verticutting.  Using vertical knives to cut leaves and stolons is certainly a stress to the plant, and now is a good time to do it if your greens are grainy (a la Johnny Miller!), or are accumulating more organic matter at the surface than desired.

3) Sand topdressing.  Topdressing during midsummer can be stressful to the plant especially if it the sand is dragged into the surface.

4) Product applications.  Some products can potentially cause more injury to creeping bentgrass and annual bluegrass when applied during hot weather, including liquid fertilizers, plant growth regulators, wetting agents, and even some fungicides.   Labels on some products specify temperatures in which they should be applied.  Use the break in the temperatures to apply products that may be needed.

5) Mowing and rolling.  If you haven’t done it yet, raise the mowing height if you can, and roll a few days each week instead of mowing.  Having more leaf area is always a good thing for the plant.

Summer tree reminders – watering, scorch, and leaf loss

Looking for some tips on watering trees? You can learn some suggestions here:

http://kansashealthyyards.org/component/allvideoshare/video/water-wise-way-to-irrigate-trees?Itemid=101

And, what’s the deal with trees losing leaves in summer? You can read about how and why trees shed leaves in summer in this article (just scroll past the tomato article to find it). Here is the link:

http://hnr.k-state.edu/extension/info-center/newsletters/2017/June20_2017_25.pdf

Scholarship and Research Tournament – Thank you!

Thank you to everyone who participated in or sponsored the KGCSA Scholarship & Research Golf Tournament! The event was Monday at Colbert Hills. Thank you to Matt Gourlay and his team for hosting – we know it is a lot of work!

The full list of sponsors can be found on the Kansas Golf Course Superintendents Association page. If you are not a KGCSA member you can explore the webpage and learn more about the organization, and perhaps you will decide to become a member, too.

Thank you so much!

Thanks to everyone who played on a team, donated funds or auction items, sponsored a hole, or bid on an auction item. The KSU Turf Team appreciates your efforts. Thank you to Christy Dipman for organizing the event. Thanks to L.C. Lacy for serving as our auctioneer – that was amazing!