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Varietal Trials: Summaries

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Poa annua Summaries

Evaluation of Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2011)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson 

Thirty fine leaf fescues cultivars and two blends were seeded in early September 2010.  The grasses established rapidly in the spring and summer the following year and by the fall turfgrass quality was very good to excellent.  Many of the grasses had a superior rating, too many to mention.  This trial will be rated for at least one more growing season.

Evaluation of Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2010)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Fine leaf fescues are grasses that provide a good quality turf under conditions of regular mowing.  As the name implies, these fescues have thin, fine leaves that have a ‘bunch type’ growth habit or produce short weak rhizomes (underground runners).  Bunch type grasses grow in a clump and reproduce by seed or establish new plants when individual tillers break away from the parent plant.  The Sheep, Chewings and Hard fescues are considered to be bunch type grasses.  The Creeping Red fescues have rhizomes that spread underground from the parent plant and can establish new plants from nodes on the rhizomes.  Rhizomes help to produce a turf that will hold together and produce good sod strength.  Fine leaf fescues are considered to have moderate drought tolerance and a lower fertility requirement than Kentucky bluegrass.  Although they are not considered to be very tolerant of traffic they do produce a high quality turf with fewer inputs.

Considerable plant breeding has taken place within the fescue species and some of the creeping red varieties are thought to have strong creeping tendencies.  The objective of this study is to assess the turf quality of some of these new fescues.  Those cultivars that show good quality will be evaluated for sod strength.

Evaluation of Various Grasses for Use on Putting Greens (2007)

L. Niemala1, T. Kubash1, J. Faber2, T. Shinkewski2 and J.B. Ross3

1Salmon Arm Golf and Country Club

2The Canal at Delcacour, Calgary

3Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre

Two tests were established in 2007 to evaluate various grasses for use on putting greens.  The test undertaken at Salmon Arm established at a slower rate than did the Calgary trial, no doubt as a result of weather conditions.  Generally, the creeping bentgrasses established more quickly than did the velvet bentgrasses.  At Salmon Arm, the bentgrass cultivars that established the best at the 90 day rating period were Penneagle II, Alpha, L-93, Pennlinks II, Penncross and Memorial.  The cultivars with the best overall quality were Penneagle II, Alpha, L-93, Pennlinks II, Penncross, Penn A-4, Declaration, Cobra 2, T1, and Penn G-1.  The best creeping bentgrass cultivars for overall quality at Calgary were Cobra 2, Alpha, Declaration, Independence, L-93, Pennlinks II, CY2, Penn A-1, Penncross and T1.  This trial will continue for three more years.

Evaluation of Alternative Grasses for Turfgrass Use (2007)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Six individual grasses and two grass blends were established in order to test their suitability for use as turfgrass.  NaturePro Turf and Nuttall’s Alkali Grass showed the best establishment.  At the last rating date three quality factors were rated which were combined to produce an overall quality rating.  The NaturePro Turf showed the best colour at that time, while the Violet Wheatgrass was quite light green.  NaturePro Turf, Nuttall’s Alkali Grass, Fult’s Alkali Grass, and Eagle Lake Acreage Mix had the highest area cover and density ratings.  These same four entries had the best overall quality, with the NaturePro Mix having the best rating.  This trial will be evaluated for at least two more growing seasons.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass and Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2005)

J.B. Boss and M.A. Anderson

Summary

A regional turfgrass variety trial was established in May of 2004 to evaluate new grass cultivars under prairie growing conditions. Twenty-eight cultivars of Kentucky bluegrass and seven other grasses were selected from the many submissions received from local, national and international turf seed suppliers. Grasses were rated for three turf quality factors: colour, density and area cover. The trial was evaluated on a monthly basis from early May through to mid October.

In the first season of the trial Fults alkaligrass showed very good establishment as it rapidly developed a dense turf. Poa supina was also quick to become established, but lost quality points due to its light green colour. The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were slower to germinate but improved steadily over the course of the 2004 growing season and were generally better in quality than the fine leaf fescues. The top Kentucky bluegrass cultivars for overall quality in year one were Rugby II, Quantum Leap, NuGlade, Tsunami, Total Eclipse, New Destiny, SR2284, Allure, Avalanche, Unique, Moon Shadow, Odyssey, Midnight, Langara, Limousine, and Alpine.

In the second season of the trial, the Kentucky bluegrass cultivars; Chateau, SR2884, Limousine, Rambo and Washington scored the highest for spring greenup. The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars: North Star and Quantum Leap were ranked the highest in overall turf quality. The Fults alkali grass produced results that were similar to that of the Kentucky bluegrasses. Despite its apple green turf colour, Poa supina had the highest overall quality ratings. The fescues consistently scored lower for density and area cover. The creeping red fescue cultivar, Boreal, was highest ranked fescue for overall turf quality.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass and Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2004)

J.B.Ross and M.A. Anderson

A regional turfgrass variety trial was established in May of 2004 to evaluate new grass cultivars under prairie growing conditions.  Twenty-eight cultivars of Kentucky bluegrass and seven other grasses were selected from submissions received.  Grasses were rated for three turf quality factors: colour, density and area cover.  The trial was evaluated on a monthly basis from early May through to mid October.  This is the final report for this trial.

In the first season of the trial Fults alkaligrass showed very good establishment as it rapidly developed a dense turf.  Poa supina was also quick to become established, but lost quality points due to its light green colour.  The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were slower to germinate but improved steadily over the course of the 2004 growing season and were generally better in quality than the fine leaf fescues.

The cultivars with the best overall colour ratings were: Total Eclipse, Rugby II, Nuglade, and Northstar, while Washington, Touchdown and Limousine had the poorest colour.  The two cultivars that were the highest ranked overall were Odyssey and Chateau.  For the fine leaf fescues, Victory chewing and was the best fescue for turf colour.  For overall quality there were no significant differences.

For a comparison of the species, the Kentucky bluegrass had the highest colour and quality ratings.

Wear Tolerant Grasses for Use on Sports Fields in a Cold Climate (2004)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

This trial was initiated to examine the effects of traffic on various grasses for sports fields in a cold climate.  Two locations were seeded in 2003 one in Calgary and one in Edmonton.  The Calgary site was seeded in late June, and under irrigated conditions, established normally.  The Edmonton site was seeded in early September on an unirrigated site.  Due to drought stress in 2004 and physical damage from construction equipment working in the area, this site was abandoned in the spring of 2005.

At the Calgary site, athletic events were initiated in the fall of 2004.  The plots endured moderate to heavy traffic from mid August through to and the end of October.  Cleat injury was visible throughout the site.  Damage ranged from moderate shearing of the above ground plant portion (verdure) to the more severe physical up rooting of the plants. 

The best overall Kentucky bluegrass for colour was Showcase, while for overall turfgrass quality, the best three were:  Showcase, Award, and Moon Shadow.  Award and Showcase appeared to be the most resistant of encroachment from Poa supina.  For the perennial ryegrass, the best two for turfgrass colour seasonal average were:  Fiesta 3 and Pick RC2.  The best perennial ryegrass for quality was Pick RC2, while Pick RC2, PR A-97 and the Fiesta 3 were the best cultivars for resisting the encroachment of Poa supina.  The best tall fescue cultivars were SR8600 and Grande for turfgrass colour, however, there were no differences in turfgrass quality.  An analysis of the turf area cover data revealed that Grande and SR8600 had best area cover.  Not surprisingly, they also had the least encroachment of Poa supina.  During the summer and fall, the Calgary Parks Mix and the perennial ryegrasses had better colour than the other grasses, when comparing the species and the mixtures.  In the fall and for the overall turfgrass quality the perennial ryegrass, the Calgary Parks Mix and the 10% Poa supina mix were the highest rated.  The perennial ryegrass resisted encroachment of the Poa supina the best.

The area cover rating provides an indication of wear tolerance of the grasses.  The Poa supina by itself and the Poa supina mix had the highest wear tolerance ratings.  The Poa supina is a very aggressive grass and went from 10% in the original mix to 98% by the end of 2006.  It also encroached on the other grass species and would be expected to eventually dominate in those plots as well.  Its area cover was superior to the other grasses, but may have a problem overwintering.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass and Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2004)

J.B.Ross and M.A. Anderson

A regional turfgrass variety trial was established in May of 2004 to evaluate new grass cultivars under prairie growing conditions.  Twenty-eight cultivars of Kentucky bluegrass and seven other grasses were selected from submissions received.  Grasses were rated for three turf quality factors: colour, density and area cover.  The trial was evaluated on a monthly basis from early May through to mid October.

In the first season of the trial Fults alkaligrass showed very good establishment as it rapidly developed a dense turf.  Poa supina was also quick to become established, but lost quality points due to its light green colour.  The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were slower to germinate but improved steadily over the course of the 2004 growing season and were generally better in quality than the fine leaf fescues.

The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars with the best overall colour ratings were: Odyssey, Total Eclipse, Rugby II, Nuglade, Northstar and Chateau.  Washington and Touchdown had the poorest colour.  The three cultivars that were the highest ranked for overall turf quality were Odyssey, Chateau and Allure.  For the fine leaf fescues, Victory chewing and Badger creeping red were the best two fescues for turf colour.  For overall quality the best fescue was Victory chewings fescue.

For a comparison of the species, the Kentucky bluegrass showed the best colour and for overall quality, the Kentucky bluegrasses were very similar to the alkali grass and the Poa supina.  The fescues were generally rated lower for turf quality.

Salinity Tolerance of Grasses Used for Boulevard Plantings (2004)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Grasses that are typically used for turfgrass plantings in the cold climate of Alberta and the Canadian Prairie Provinces are not tolerant of saline conditions that occur near roadways in our major cities.  As a result, areas that are void of grasses often exist near the edge of roadways.  Alternative grasses need to be determined that might be better able to survive these conditions.

Many grasses are being developed through breeding programs that are both drought and saline tolerant.  However, these grasses have not been tested in our climate.  In addition, a number of native grasses have been selected in Alberta that are thought to have good salinity tolerance.  However, these have not been tested under conditions where grasses are mowed on a semi-regular basis.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass Cultivars (2004)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

This trial was established in 2007 for display at the Turf Producers International Conference and Show which was held in Calgary in July of 2008.  The best grasses for overall quality were Glenmont, Shamrock, Hallmark, Harmonie, AKB 287, ELT Blend, Jacklin 94-1466, Princeton 105, Delight, Cheetah, Julia, SR2284, and A00-247.  Only two grasses, Shamrock and Princeton 105, were in the bluegrass trial that was completed in 2000.  This would indicate that new varieties are outperforming grasses from the previous trial.

Evaluation of Various Grasses for Use on Putting Greens (2004)

L. Niemala1, T. Kubash1, J. Faber2, T. Shinkewski2 and J.B. Ross3

1Salmon Arm Golf and Country Club

2The Canal at Delcacour, Calgary

3Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre

Two tests were established in 2007 to evaluate various grasses for use on putting greens.  The test undertaken at Salmon Arm established at a slower rate than did the Calgary trial, no doubt as a result of weather conditions.  Generally, the creeping bentgrass varieties established more quickly than did the velvet bentgrass.  At Salmon Arm, the varieties that established the best were Alpha, Pennlinks II, L-93, and Penneagle II.  Those varieties that established most rapidly at the Calgary site were Cobra 2, L-93, Penncross and Declaration, all creeping bentgrass varieties.  Velvet bentgrass was slower to establish than was the creeping bentgrass.  Penneagle II had the highest score on the rating scale for colour at Salmon Arm and was considered to be equal to Declaration, Penn A-4, and CY2 creeping bentgrass and to Legendary and Vesper velvet bentgrass.  At Calgary, colour of the various grasses was very similar.  The density of the two velvet bentgrass varieties was superior to the creeping bentgrass varieties in the Salmon Arm study.  The best varieties for density in Calgary were Cobra 2, L-93, and Declaration, all creeping bentgrass varieties.  For overall quality in Salmon Arm, the best varieties were Penneagle II, Declaration, Penn A-4, T1, Kingpin, Pennlinks II, CY2, Alpha, Memorial, Penn G-1 and Cobra 2.  At the Calgary site, Cobra 2, L-93, Penn A-4, Declaration and Penneagle II were the best varieties for overall turf quality.  Poa trivialis produced poor quality, possibly due to its inability to withstand close mowing.

Results from this trial were very inconsistent between the two sites.  In addition, the ratings need to be consistently higher if they are to be considered a reliable evaluation of the grasses in this trial.

Evaluation of Alternative Grasses for Turfgrass Use (2004)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Six individual grasses and two grass blends were established in order to test their suitability for use as turfgrass.  NaturePro Turf and Nuttall’s Alkali Grass showed the best establishment.  In year one, best overall quality ratings were attributed to NaturePro Turf, Nuttall’s and Fult’s alkali grass, and Eagle Lake Acreage Mix.  NaturePro Turf showed the best colour at that time, while the Violet Wheatgrass was quite light green.  NaturePro Turf, Nuttall’s Alkali Grass, Fult’s Alkali Grass, and Eagle Lake Acreage Mix had the highest area cover and density ratings.

In year two, NaturePro Turf, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and Nuttall’s weeping alkaligrass were the top rated grasses/mixes for overall quality.  Early bluegrass, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and NaturePro Turf showed the best colour when ratings were combined for the year.  NaturePro Turf, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and Nuttall’s weeping alkaligrass were the top rated grasses/mixes when density was compared.

Salinity Tolerance of Kentucky Bluegrass (2004)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

This trial was seeded in late May of 2009 to evaluate various Kentucky bluegrass varieties for their salinity tolerance.  Forty-four individual Kentucky bluegrass varieties, two Kentucky bluegrass blends, Fult’s alkaligrass and Scottish Links blend were evaluated for their establishment under saline conditions.  Salinity, as measured by electrical conductivity, ranged from 1.1 to 4.1 ds/m2, which would be considered low to moderate salinity.  Kentucky bluegrass is rated as ‘sensitive’ when considering salinity tolerance.  Fult’s alkaligrass established the best of any of the grasses that were seeded.  Of the Kentucky bluegrasses, the variety, Washington, established the best.  Salinity was quite variable between the replications in this trial and may have compromised the data in year one of this trial.  This trial will be rated for at least one more year.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass and Fine Leaf Fescue At Various Mowing Heights (2004)

D.K. Tompkins, J.B.Ross and M.A. Anderson

Summary

This trial was seeded in May 2004 in order to evaluate Kentucky bluegrass and fine leaf fescue at two mowing heights. In the first season of the trial Fults alkaligrass showed very good establishment as it developed a dense turf quite rapidly. Poa supina was also quick to become established, but lost quality points due to its light green colouration. The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were slower to germinate but improved steadily over the course of the 2004 growing season and were generally better in quality than the fine leaf fescues. The top Kentucky bluegrass cultivars for overall quality were Rugby II, Quantum Leap, NuGlade, Tsunami, Total Eclipse, New Destiny, SR2284, Allure, Avalanche, Unique, Moon Shadow, Odyssey, Midnight, Langara, Limousine, and Alpine. The mowing height regimen is expected to be instituted in 2005.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass Cultivars (2003)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Fifty-two Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were seeded in 2007 for display at the Turf Producers International Conference and Show which was held in Calgary in July of 2008.  Many cultivars showed good establishment in year one of the trial.  In order to provide a single score for overall quality and colour, data was combined for years two and three.  When quality scores were ranked the cultivar Glenmont scored the highest.  Nineteen other cultivars:  Jacklin 94-1466, AKB 287, Hallmark, Harmonie, , ELT Blend, Jacklin 93-3429, Julia, Cheetah, Ulysses, Princeton 105, SR2284, Shamrock, A00-891, Bewitched, Delight, Shiraz, Nu Destiny, A98-1254 and A00-247 were ranked lower but were not significantly different than Glenmont in overall turf quality.  For colour, the following individual varieties rated highest: Jacklin 94-1466, Harmonie, AKB 287, Cheetah, Mallard, Arrowhead, Glenmont, Hallmark, Nu Destiny, Langara and Thermal Blue Blaze.  The cultivar Jacklin 93-3429 scored the highest for drought tolerance, although it was not considered statistically better than the other Kentucky bluegrass cultivars.

Evaluation of Various Grasses for Use on Putting Greens (2003)

L. Niemala1, T. Kubash1, and J.B. Ross2

1Salmon Arm Golf and Country Club

2Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre

For overall turf quality, the best creeping bentgrass cultivars were T1, Penn A-4, Penneagle II.  Ten of the eleven remaining bentgrasses scored slightly lower but were statistically equal in overall turf quality with the top three varieties.  The creeping bentgrass cultivar CY2 did not perform as well as the top three cultivars.  Both the velvet bentgrasses and the Poa trivialis failed to produce a high quality turf and scored lower in overall turf quality.

Wear Tolerant Grasses for Use on Sports Fields in a Cold Climate (2003)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

This trial was initiated to examine the effects of traffic on various grasses for sports fields in a cold climate.  Two locations were seeded in 2003 one in Calgary and one in Edmonton.  The Calgary site was seeded in late June, and under irrigated conditions, established normally.  The Edmonton site was seeded in early September on an unirrigated site.  Due to drought stress in 2004 and physical damage from construction equipment working in the area, this site was abandoned in the spring of 2005.

At the Calgary site, athletic events were initiated in the fall of 2004.  The plots endured moderate to heavy traffic from mid August through to the end of October.  Cleat injury was visible throughout the site.  Damage ranged from moderate shearing of the above ground plant portion to more severe physical up rooting of the plants.

An initial study was conducted to test the various grasses for their tolerance of cold temperatures, also referred to as relative hardiness.  The Kentucky bluegrass varieties generally had relative hardiness levels of colder than -26oC, while the tall fescues had hardiness levels that were colder than -22oC, and the perennial ryegrass had hardiness levels of -17oC.

The best overall Kentucky bluegrass cultivars for colour were Showcase and Award, while for overall turfgrass quality, the best cultivars were:  Showcase, Award, Touchdown, Moon Shadow, Tsunami and Langara.  Award, Showcase, Touchdown, Total Eclipse, America and SR228 appeared to be the most resistant of encroachment from Poa supina.  For the perennial ryegrass, there were very little differences between cultivars for colour and quality.  Pennfine was the best cultivar for resisting the encroachment of Poa supina.  Once again, there were no major differences between the cultivars for colour and turfgrass quality.  SR8600 and Grande had the least encroachment of Poa supina.  When comparing the species and the mixtures, the Calgary Parks Mix, Kentucky bluegrass and the perennial ryegrasses had best colour ratings.  For overall turfgrass quality the perennial ryegrass, the Calgary Parks Mix, the Poa supina and the 10% Poa supina mix were the highest rated.  The Calgary Parks Sport Mix and the perennial ryegrass resisted encroachment of the Poa supina the best.

Area cover was thought to be an indication of injury from traffic, particularly during the fall when football was played.  In the fall of 2006, the 10% Poa supina was the best for area cover (Table 13).  However, in the spring there were no differences between species or mixes which would indicate that there had been a reduction in area cover of the Poa supina possibly due to winter kill.  In the summer, the 10% Poa supina mix produced the best area, while in the fall that same mix plus the Calgary Parks Sport mix, and the Poa supina showed the best area cover.  The same three were the best overall.  The Calgary Parks Sport mix and the perennial ryegrass resisted encroachment of the Poa supina the best.

Evaluation of Turfgrass Species for Use on Putting Greens Final Report (2003)

M.A. Anderson, G. McCullough, J.B. Ross, D.L.Moroz and C.E Miluch

Summary

Eleven bentgrasses (Agrostis palustris Huds.) and four annual bluegrasses (Poa annua L.) wereestablished at the Red Deer Golf and Country Club in August of 1999. These grasses were evaluated for their overall quality and suitability for use on putting greens. The study revealed that all of the bentgrass cultivars tested were considered to be acceptable for use on a putting green under the NTEP standards. All ten of the bentgrasses tested demonstrated qualities superior or equal to those expressed by the standard entry, Penncross. The cultivar Penn A-4, with its strong color and superior overall quality ranked as the best overall cultivar in the trial. Cato, Southshore, Imperial, A-1, G-2 and G-6 were also highly rated. As for the bluegrasses, none of the bluegrass cultivars were considered acceptable. The bluegrass biotype, 97-Quilt I-15, was ranked the highest for the bluegrasses for overall quality. Currently, only Peterson’s Creeping Bluegrass is commercially available. Although winter injury was not specifically evaluated, spring quality ratings and winter injury are highly correlated. May quality ratings showed that Lofts L-93, Southshore, Cato, Penn A-4, Penn A-1, Penn-G-2 and Penn G-6 were significantly better than Penncross.

Wear Tolerant Grasses for Use on Sports Fields in a Cold Climate (2002)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

This trial was initiated to examine the effects of traffic on various grasses for sports fields in a cold climate.  Two locations were seeded in 2003 one in Calgary and one in Edmonton.  The Calgary site was seeded in late June, and under irrigated conditions, established normally.  The Edmonton site was seeded in early September on an unirrigated site.  Due to drought stress in 2004 and physical damage from construction equipment working in the area, this site was abandoned in the spring of 2005.

At the Calgary site, athletic events were initiated in the fall of 2004.  The plots endured moderate to heavy traffic from mid August through to and the end of October.  Cleat injury was visible throughout the site.  Damage ranged from moderate shearing of the above ground plant portion (verdure) to the more severe physical up rooting of the plants.  

The tall fescue plots exhibited more physical uprooting than the other grasses and the bare patches created in the fall of 2004 required most of the season to fill-in.  The perennial ryegrass, Kentucky bluegrass and the sports field mix plots successfully recovered from traffic damage and were rated as acceptable in overall turf quality.  The Poa supina mix showed the greatest improvement over the course of the season and scored the highest in overall turf quality.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass and Fine Leaf Fescue Cultivars (2002)

J.B.Ross and M.A. Anderson

A regional turfgrass variety trial was established in May of 2004 to evaluate new grass cultivars under prairie growing conditions.  Twenty-eight cultivars of Kentucky bluegrass and seven other grasses were selected from the many submissions received from local, national and international turf seed suppliers.  Grasses were rated for three turf quality factors: colour, density and area cover.  The trial was evaluated on a monthly basis from early May through to mid October.

In the first season of the trial Fults alkaligrass showed very good establishment as it rapidly developed a dense turf.  Poa supina was also quick to become established, but lost quality points due to its light green colour.  The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars were slower to germinate but improved steadily over the course of the 2004 growing season and were generally better in quality than the fine leaf fescues.  The top Kentucky bluegrass cultivars for overall quality in year one were Rugby II, Quantum Leap, NuGlade, Tsunami, Total Eclipse, New Destiny, SR2284, Allure, Avalanche, Unique, Moon Shadow, Odyssey, Midnight, Langara, Limousine, and Alpine. 

In the second season of the trial, the Kentucky bluegrass cultivars; Chateau, SR2884, Limousine, Rambo and Washington scored the highest for spring greenup.  The Kentucky bluegrass cultivars: North Star and Quantum Leap were ranked the highest in overall turf quality.  The Fults alkali grass produced results that were similar to that of the Kentucky bluegrasses.  Despite its apple green turf colour, Poa supina had the highest overall quality ratings.  The fescues consistently scored lower for density and area cover.  The creeping red fescue cultivar, Boreal, was highest ranked fescue for overall turf quality.

Evaluation of Turfgrass Species for Use on Putting Greens (2002)

M.A. Anderson, G. McCullough, and J.B. Ross

Summary

Eleven bentgrasses (Agrostis palustris Huds.) and four annual bluegrasses (Poa annua L.) were established at the Red Deer Golf and Country Club in August of 1999. These grasses were evaluated for their overall quality and suitability for use on putting greens,

Eight of the ten bentgrasses tested demonstrated qualities superior or equal to those expressed by the standard entry, Penncross, with Penn A-4 being the best overall cultivar for 2002. The annual bluegrass biotypes tested started slowly in the spring, but significantly improved in quality over the rest of the season. Peterson’s Creeping Bluegrass scored the highest for the bluegrass biotypes.

Evaluation of Turfgrass Species for Use on Putting Greens (2000)

D.L. Moroz and C.E. Miluch

Summary

Eleven bentgrasses (Agrostis palustris Huds.) and four annual bluegrasses (Poa annua L.) were established at the Red Deer Golf and Country Club in August, 1999. These grasses were evaluated for their overall quality ratings while being maintained at putting green mowing heights. There are cultivars in the trial that consistently outperform the industry standard, Penncross, including Penn A-4, Penn A-1, Lofts L-93, and Penn G-6. The annual bluegrasses overall have a tendency towards lower quality ratings, the exception being spring green-up values.

Salinity

Salinity Tolerance of Grasses Used for Boulevard Plantings (2008)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Introduction

Grasses that are typically used for turfgrass plantings in the cold climate of Alberta and the Canadian Prairie Provinces are not tolerant of saline conditions that occur near roadways in our major cities. As a result, areas that are void of grasses often exist near the edge of roadways. Alternative grasses need to be determined that might be better able to survive these conditions.

Many grasses are being developed through breeding programs that are both drought and saline tolerant. However, these grasses have not been tested in our climate. In addition, a number of native grasses have been selected in Alberta that are thought to have good salinity tolerance. However, these have not been tested under conditions where grasses are mowed on a semi-regular basis.

Saline Tolerant Grass Trial (1999)

C.E. Miluch and D.L.Moroz

Summary

A saline tolerant grass trial was established late in the summer of 1999 at the Olds Central Highlands Golf Club. The EC (Electroconductivity) readings of the soil were 7 mS/cm. At this level only salt tolerant species would survive. Grass species demonstrating salt tolerance included in this trial are: R9-208 (Nuttal's) Alkali Grass, Fults Alkali Grass, Absolute Kentucky Bluegrass, Golfstar Idaho Bentgrass, Newhy RS Hybrid Wheatgrass, Kirk Crested Wheatgrass, Warwick Hard Fescue, Idaho Fescue and 4 cultivars of Creeping Red Fescue (Boreal, Aruba, Dawson and Seabreeze). Evaluations will commence in the spring of 2000.

National Turfgrass Evaluation Program

National Turfgrass Evaluation Program - Final Report (2000)

C.E. Miluch

Summary

The National Turfgrass Evaluation Program (NTEP) Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis L.) trial ran from 1996 - 1999. Spring green-up, genetic colour and overall quality of the turf was evaluated. Ba 81-220 and VB 16015 ranked highest in spring green-up ratings. Award and Limousine Kentucky Bluegrasses ranked number one overall in genetic colour and overall quality respectively. The data presented in this report will only be from 1997, 1998 and 1999 as 1996 was establishment data.

Other Evaluation Trials

Evaluation of Alternative Grasses for Turfgrass Use (2008)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

Summary

Six individual grasses and two grass blends were established in order to test their suitability for use as turfgrass. NaturePro Turf and Nuttall’s Alkali Grass showed the best establishment. In year one, best overall quality ratings were attributed to NaturePro Turf, Nuttall’s and Fult’s alkali grass, and Eagle Lake Acreage Mix. NaturePro Turf showed the best colour at that time, while the Violet Wheatgrass was quite light green. NaturePro Turf, Nuttall’s Alkali Grass, Fult’s Alkali Grass, and Eagle Lake Acreage Mix had the highest area cover and density ratings.

In year two, NaturePro Turf, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and Nuttall’s weeping alkaligrass were the top rated grasses/mixes for overall quality. Early bluegrass, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and NaturePro Turf showed the best colour when ratings were combined for the year. NaturePro Turf, Eagle Lake Turf Acreage Mix and Nuttall’s weeping alkaligrass were the top rated grasses/mixes when density was compared.

Evaluation of Various Grasses for Use on Putting Greens (2008)

L. Niemala1, T. Kubash1, J. Faber2, T. Shinkewski2 and J.B. Ross3

  1. Salmon Arm Golf and Country Club
  2. The Canal at Delcacour, Calgary
  3. Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre

Summary

Two tests were established in 2007 to evaluate various grasses for use on putting greens. The test undertaken at Salmon Arm established at a slower rate than did the Calgary trial, no doubt as a result of weather conditions. Generally, the creeping bentgrass varieties established more quickly than did the velvet bentgrass. At Salmon Arm, the varieties that established the best were Alpha, Pennlinks II, L-93, and Penneagle II. Those varieties that established most rapidly at the Calgary site were Cobra 2, L-93, Penncross and Declaration, all creeping bentgrass varieties. Velvet bentgrass was slower to establish than was the creeping bentgrass. Penneagle II had the highest score on the rating scale for colour at Salmon Arm and was considered to be equal to Declaration, Penn A-4, and CY2 creeping bentgrass and to Legendary and Vesper velvet bentgrass. At Calgary, colour of the various grasses was very similar. The density of the two velvet bentgrass varieties was superior to the creeping bentgrass varieties in the Salmon Arm study. The best varieties for density in Calgary were Cobra 2, L-93, and Declaration, all creeping bentgrass varieties. For overall quality in Salmon Arm, the best varieties were Penneagle II, Declaration, Penn A-4, T1, Kingpin, Pennlinks II, CY2, Alpha, Memorial, Penn G-1 and Cobra 2. At the Calgary site, Cobra 2, L-93, Penn A-4, Declaration and Penneagle II were the best varieties for overall turf quality. Poa trivialis produced poor quality, possibly due to its inability to withstand close mowing.

Results from this trial were very inconsistent between the two sites. In addition, the ratings need to be consistently higher if they are to be considered a reliable evaluation of the grasses in this trial.

Evaluation of Kentucky Bluegrass Cultivars (2008)

J.B. Ross and M.A. Anderson

Introduction

This trial was established in 2007 for display at the Turf Producers International Conference and Show which was held in Calgary in July of 2008. The best grasses for overall quality were Glenmont, Shamrock, Hallmark, Harmonie, AKB 287, ELT Blend, Jacklin 94-1466, Princeton 105, Delight, Cheetah, Julia, SR2284, and A00-247. Only two grasses, Shamrock and Princeton 105, were in the bluegrass trial that was completed in 2000. This would indicate that new varieties are outperforming grasses from the previous trial.

Wear Tolerant Grasses for Use on Sports Fields in a Cold Climate (2005)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

Summary

This trial was initiated to examine the effects of traffic on various grasses for sports fields in a cold climate. Two locations were seeded in 2003 one in Calgary and one in Edmonton. The Calgary site was seeded in late June, and under irrigated conditions, established normally. The Edmonton site was seeded in early September on an unirrigated site. Due to drought stress in 2004 and physical damage from construction equipment working in the area, this site was abandoned in the spring of 2005.

At the Calgary site, athletic events were initiated in the fall of 2004. The plots endured moderate to heavy traffic from mid August through to and the end of October. Cleat injury was visible throughout the site. Damage ranged from moderate shearing of the above ground plant portion (verdure) to the more severe physical up rooting of the plants.

The tall fescue plots exhibited more physical uprooting than the other grasses and the bare patches created in the fall of 2004 required most of the season to fill-in. The perennial ryegrass, Kentucky bluegrass and the sports field mix plots successfully recovered from traffic damage and were rated as acceptable in overall turf quality. The Poa supina mix showed the greatest improvement over the course of the season and scored the highest in overall turf quality.

Wear Tolerant Grasses for Use on Sports Fields in a Cold Climate (2004)

M.A. Anderson and J.B. Ross

Summary

This trial was initiated to examine the effects of traffic on various grasses for sports fields in a cold climate. The Calgary site was seeded June 30, 2003, and the Edmonton site was seeded September 3, 2003.

All grasses at Calgary site came through the winter of 2003-04 in good condition as weather conditions were generally mild. The grasses recovered quickly in the spring and continued to improve in quality over the summer. The perennial ryegrass cultivars were established well and received the highest scores for area cover, density and turf colour. The field was opened to athletic competitions in September 2004.

The plots at Edmonton over wintered as a dormant seed bed. In the spring, seed began to germinate but emergence was well below expectations leaving the stands of turf thin and patchy. The Perennial Ryegrass cultivars were best at establishing a stand of turf, while the Kentucky Bluegrass cultivars and the Poa supina plots were much poorer. A decision as to whether to continue the trial with the current stand of turf will be made after the spring evaluation in 2005.