Golf Course Management

MAY 2014

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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05.14 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 79 of the transition zone. Perhaps visual quality could have been maintained at acceptable lev - els by applying water when only 25% of the plot exhibited symptoms of drought stress; further research is required. Our method may be appropriate, however, for the typi - cal homeowner with no in-ground sprinklers or superintendents with low-maintenance roughs on their golf courses, or where the primary concern is water conservation and some dormancy is acceptable. Visual quality in all bluegrasses generally remained >4, and recovery was rapid in the fall after resuming irrigation (data not shown). Although visual quality declined to <6 in all cultivars, the time required to do so ranged widely from 8.1 days in Kenblue to 44.8 days in Blue Velvet (data not shown for all cultivars; for greater detail, see [2,3]). The decline was slower in Blue Velvet, Award, Midnight, Cabernet, Unique and NuDes - tiny (36 to 44.8 days) than in Park, Baron, Wellington and Kenblue (8.1 to 14.2 days). Thus, four of fve cultivars in the Compact Midnight group maintained quality lon - ger than all cultivars in the Common group (Table 1). As a group, the Compact Midnight types maintained quality >6 for longer than the Common as well as the BVMG types, but also received more water than the Compact America and Mid-Atlantic groups (Figure 3). Relations ips between water applied and visual quality Ideally, cultivars or groups that require the least water would also have the highest visual quality. Those relationships are illustrated in the scatter biplot in Figure 5, in which cul - tivars with the most favorable characteristics appear in the lower right section. In general, irrigation applications were greater in blue - grasses with poorer quality (Figure 5, upper left section). This pattern probably resulted from improved cultivars with morphological properties that both enhanced turf quality and reduced evapotranspiration (water use). Such improved properties include compact or dwarfed growth habits, horizontal leaf orien - tation and greater shoot density. All 15 bluegrasses with the lowest water applications were also ranked among those with the highest visual quality (Figure 5; there were no statistical differences among cultivars with average visual quality >5.5). The amount of water applied to these 15 cultivars with superior turf quality was also Figure 4. Days to wilt between irri- gations among Kentucky bluegrass phenotypic groups, averaged over the periods June 19-Oct. 1, 2007 (105 days), and June 22-Oct. 7, 2009 (108 days), at Manhattan, Kan. The same letter above bars denoting different phenotypic groups indicates no signifcant difference. BVMG Common Compact Compact America Compact Midnight Mid-Atlanti c 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 Water applied (inches) bc ab a c c b Figure 3. Water applied to Kentucky bluegrass phenotypic groups, averaged over the periods June 19-Oct. 1, 2007 (105 days), and June 22-Oct. 7, 2009 (108 days), at Manhattan, Kan. The same letter above bars denoting different pheno - typic groups indicates no signifcant difference. Water applied to KBG phenotypic groups Days to wilt for KBG phenotypic groups BVMG Common Compact Compact America Compact Midnight Mid-Atlantic 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 Days to wilt b b b b a a 076-087_May14_TechwellCuttingEdge.indd 79 4/16/14 2:53 PM

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