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Turfgrass Fertility. Justin Quetone Moss Assistant Professor Turfgrass Research and Extension Department of Horticulture & Landscape Architecture. Turfgrass. Grasses that form a contiguous groundcover and persist under regular mowing and traffic - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Turfgrass Water Use and Conservation for Golf Courses

Turfgrass FertilityJustin Quetone MossAssistant ProfessorTurfgrass Research and ExtensionDepartment of Horticulture & Landscape Architecture

1TurfgrassGrasses that form a contiguous groundcover and persist under regular mowing and trafficTurf is grown either for aesthetic value or functional value or bothAll turf requires some form of maintenanceEconomic thresholds for turfgrass are not determined by yield but by consumer expectations

Benefits of GrassesFunctionalSoil erosion control and dust stabilizationCooling effect

3Benefits of GrassesAestheticBeautyComplementaryProperty Values

4Benefits of GrassesRecreationalSafe playing surfaces

5TurfgrassCool-season grasses are also called C3 grassesWarm-season grasses are also called C4 grassesWhy?

TurfgrassBased on their photosynthetic pathwaysC3 first stable product formed following CO2 fixation is phosphoglyceric acid (PGA), a three-carbon compoundC4 first stable product formed following CO2 fixation is oxaloacetate (OAA) which is converted into malate or aspartate, four-carbon compounds

Types of TurfgrassExamples of cool-season or C3 grassesBluegrasses, fescues, bentgrasses, and ryegrassesExamples of warm-season or C4 grassesBermudagrasses, zoysiagrasses, buffalograss, blue grama, St. Augustine, centipedegrass, bahiagrass, and seashore paspalum

Turfgrass Adaptation

C3 Grasses - Temperate RegionsC4 Grasses - Subtropical RegionsTransition ZoneTurfgrass root growthCool-season grassesMajority of root growth in spring and fall in Oklahoma, roots dieback in summerWarm-season grassesMajority of root growth in late spring/summer in Oklahoma, no root growth in winter

TurfgrassMacronutrients, non-mineral essentialC, H, OPrimary nutrients, primarily from fertilizationN, P, KSecondary nutrients, typically sufficient for turfCa, Mg, S,Micronutrients, typically sufficient for turfFe, Mn, Cu, Cl, Zn, B, Mo

NitrogenN application gives you the fastest, most noticeable response turns green!More N is not always betterExcess N may promote shoot growth at the expense of root growthWe want to focus on a healthy root system

NitrogenN application can affect disease developmentSometimes excess N will increase disease developmentOther times, a correct N application can help alleviate disease symptomsExample: Brown patch likes high N, Dollar spot likes low N

N FertilitySoil test?Tissue test?Sensors?

N FertilityExample program for bermudagrass on a well maintained lawnMid-April 0.5 lbs N/1,000 sq ftMay 1 lb N/1,000 sq ftJune 1 lb N/1,000 sq ftJuly 1 lb N/1,000 sq ftAugust 1 lb N/1,000 sq ftSeptember 0.5-0.75 lbs N/1,000 sq ftOctober Mid-April no N appliedWe would try to apply 4-5 lbs N/1,000 sq ft/year, depending on conditions

N FertilityExample program for tall fescue in partial shade on a well maintained lawnMarch 0.5 lbs N/1,000 sq ft, slow releaseApril 0.5 lbs N/1,000 sq ftEarly May 0.25 lb N/1,000 sq ft, fast releaseJune not recommendedJuly not recommendedAugust not recommendedSeptember 1.0 lbs N/1,000 sq ft, fast releaseOctober 1.0 lbs N/1,000 sq ft, slow releaseNovember February 0.5 lbs N/1,000 sq ft if needed, slow releaseWe would try to apply 3-4 lbs N/1,000 sq ft/year, depending on conditions

Fertilizer BagIf you buy a bag of 20-12-15 fertilizer, it contains:20% N12% P2O515% K2O53% other materials; this could be filler, inert materials, or if listed, other nutrients

Fertilizer BagIf you purchase 40 lb bags of 20-12-15 fertilizer and you need to apply 1 lb N/1,000 sq ft to 20,000 sq ft of bermudagrass turf:How many lbs actual fertilizer do you need to apply per 1,000 sq. ft.How many lbs of fertilizer do you need for this job?How many bags do you need on hand?

Fertilizer BagIf you purchase 40 lb bags of 20-12-15 fertilizer and you need to apply 1 lb N/1,000 sq ft to 20,000 sq ft of bermudagrass turf:How many lbs actual fertilizer do you need to apply per 1,000 sq. ft.

1 lb N 1 lb fertilizer1,000 sq ft 0.2 lb NX=5 lbs fertilizer1,000 sq ft Fertilizer BagIf you purchase 40 lb bags of 20-12-15 fertilizer and you need to apply 1 lb N/1,000 sq ft to 20,000 sq ft of bermudagrass turf:How many lbs of fertilizer do you need for this job?5 lbs fertilizer/1,000 sq ft * 20,000 sq ft = 100 lbs fertilizerHow many bags do you need on hand?100 lbs fertilizer/40 lb bags = 2.5 bags

N CarriersQuick-release or solubleSynthetic inorganicAmmonium nitrate 33% NAmmonium sulfate 21% NCalcium nitrate 16% NPotassium nitrate 13% NSynthetic organicUrea 45% NShould be lightly watered-in to prevent inorganic salt burn and urea volatilization

N CarriersSlow-release or water-insoluble Synthetic organicUrea formaldehyde (UF) 18-40% NIsobutylidene Diurea (IBDU) 31% NCoatedSulfur-coated urea (SCU) 15-45% NPlastic or Poly-resin-coated urea 10-44% NNatural organicMilorganite 6% NNature Safe, Ringer, many others 5-18% N (from fish meal, bone meal, poultry feather meal, etc.)

McCarty et al., 2003. Fundamentals of turfgrass and agricultural chemistry. p. 238.

McCarty et al., 2003. Fundamentals of turfgrass and agricultural chemistry. p. 243.

McCarty et al., 2003. Fundamentals of turfgrass and agricultural chemistry. p. 245.Turf FertilizersOther FertilizersGypsum (Calcium sulfate) 24% S and 41% calcium oxide; sodic soils (Na), little effect on soil pHCalcium nitrate 19% Ca and 1.5% Mg, N has high burn potentialDolomitic limestone increase soil pH, 22% Ca and 11% MgMagnesium sulfate (Epsom salt) 13-23% S and 10-17% Mg, little effect on soil pH

Turf FertilizersOther Fertilizers many turf fertilizers have micronutrients Fe many times turf managers use Fe for the green responseTypically chelated Fe, also Ferrous sulfateZn Zinc sulfate, Zinc chelate, Zinc oxideMn Manganese sulfate, Manganese oxideCu Copper sulfate, Copper oxide, Copper chelateB borax, boric acide, soluborMo Ammonium molybdate, Sodium molybdateCl ammonium chloride, calcium chloride, Mg chloride, K chloride

Questions?Justin Quetone Moss405-744-5729mossjq@okstate.edu

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