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The National Turfgrass Research Initiative. A Cooperative Effort of the Turfgrass Industry and the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS). Benefits Of Turf. Beautifies tens of millions of home lawns, parks, and landscapes

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The national turfgrass research initiative

The National Turfgrass Research Initiative

A Cooperative Effort of the Turfgrass Industry and the

USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS)


Benefits of turf
Benefits Of Turf

  • Beautifies tens of millions of home lawns, parks, and landscapes

  • Provides safe playing surfaces on athletic fields, recreation in parks and on golf courses

  • Provides safety and dust control along highways and runways

  • Provides environmental protection and enhancement of water, soil, and air


Where is turf found
Where is Turf Found?

50 million acres nationwide, $40 billion industry

Home Lawns, Roadsides, Airports, Commercial/Institutional Facilities,

Military Bases, Schools, Parks, Golf Courses, Churches, Cemeteries


Turfgrass issues

Water Supplies Limited

Effluent, Saline Sources Used

Drought Tolerant Grasses Needed

Better Management Practices Needed

Pesticide Use Extensively Scrutinized

Re-registered of Pesticides Limited

Disease, Insect Resistant Grasses Needed

Alternative Systems Needed

Turfgrass Issues

Water

Pesticides


Turfgrass issues1

Facilities Overused

Athletic Field Safety Scrutinized

Traffic Tolerant Grasses Needed

Better Management Practices Needed

Fertilizers & Pesticides Restricted

Watersheds – Groundwater and Surface Water Protected

Improved Management Practices Needed

Turfgrass Issues

Excessive Use

Regulations


History of turf research in usda ars
History of Turf Research in USDA-ARS

1920Drs. Piper & Oakley, Arlington Turf Gardens, VA, grant

from USGA, USGA Green Section started

1940’s Turf program moved to Beltsville, MD

1950’s Dr. Fred Grau – Beltsville developed Merion KY

Bluegrass, Meyer zoysia, USGA splits with ARS

1950’s Tifton, GA turf breeding, Dr. Glenn Burton Tifway,

Tifgreen, Tifdwarf bermudagrasses

1988 Jack Murray – Beltsville, only full-time turf position in

ARS, retired & position abolished

1990’s Dr. Wayne Hanna – Tifton, develops TifEagle, Tifsport bermudas, Tifblair centipede

2001 Full-time turfgrass position re-established by Congress Beltsville/National Arboretum (Scott Warnke, Research Plant Geneticist/Physiologist)


Turf industry organization support
Turf Industry Organization Support

USGA US Golf Association (750,000 members)

GCSAA Golf Course Superintendents Assoc. of

America (21,000)

TPI Turfgrass Producers International (1,000)

PLCAA Professional Lawn Care Assoc. of America

(1,000)

NTEP National Turfgrass Evaluation Program (950)

STMA Sports Turf Managers Association (2,300)

IA The Irrigation Association (3,000)


Turf customer workshop
Turf Customer Workshop

  • January 22-25, 2002, Dallas, Texas

  • 112 attendees (62 customers, stakeholders & partners)

    Outcomes:

  • Developed an understanding of the broad range of Turf issues important to ARS customers, stakeholders, and partners

  • Identified high-priority Turf-related research issues responsive to customer, stakeholder, and partner needs

  • Identified major research activities that cut across ARS locations to address key elements of Turf research needs


Turf customer workshop1
Turf Customer Workshop

Six research priority areas were identified:

  • Collection, Enhancement and Preservation of Turfgrass Germplasm

  • Enhancement of Soil and Soil Management Practices

  • Improvement of Water Management Strategies and Practices

  • Improvement of Pest Management Practices

  • Understanding and Improvement of Turfgrass’ Role in the Environment

  • Development of Integrated Turf Management Systems


Turf Customer Workshop

National Program Presence within Priority Areas:

  • Collection, Enhancement and Preservation of Turfgrass Germplasm

    (NP 302, NP 205,NP 301)

  • Enhancement of Soil and Soil Management Practices (NP 202)

  • Improvement of Water Management Strategies and Practices (NP 201)

  • Improvement of Pest Management Practices (NP 303, NP 304)

  • Understanding and Improvement of Turfgrass’ Role in the Environment (NP 201, NP 202, NP 203, NP 207)

  • Development of Integrated Turf Management Systems (NP 207)


Follow up to workshop
Follow-up to Workshop

Additional Meetings –

Turf Industry reps and ARS

  • October 9-10, 2002, Beltsville, MD

  • December 11-12, 2002, Phoenix, AZ

  • Feb. 20-21, 2003, Hunt Valley, MD

  • May 14-15, 2003, San Diego, CA


Map of turfgrass regions
Map of Turfgrass Regions

Developed by the Turfgrass Industry and USDA-ARS


Current ars locations matched with university strengths
Current ARS Locations Matched with University Strengths

ARS locations noted are those that may have the potential to conduct turfgrass research


National turfgrass initiative
National Turfgrass Initiative

Research Proposal - $32.4 Million

  • New funding by program thrust ranges from $4.5M (soil management) to $6.3M (environmental impacts)

  • New resources by regions ranges from 8 to 10 Scientists/region

  • New resource distribution and research program management clarified with collaborators and partners


Why a turfgrass initiative
Why A Turfgrass Initiative?

  • Partnerships developed considering “strength-on-strength” of the partnering entities

  • ARS research program management (e.g., funding levels, fund control, project planning, peer review) clarified up-front with collaborators and partners

  • Research needs clearly identified by stakeholders, customers, and partners

  • Research program carefully coordinated and strategically planned to respond to the national research needed


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