News / Blog (All)

Come see us at the 2019 Minnesota State Fair!

By Dan Sandor

It’s that time of the year – the Great Minnesota Get-Together kicks off this Thursday, August 22nd and runs through Labor Day, Sept 2nd. Members of our UMN Turf Team will be on hand all 12 days of the fair from 9am to 9pm in the CFANS wing (southwest hall) of the Agriculture Horticulture building located on the corner of Judson Ave and Underwood St.

Still bagging your grass clippings? Let's clear up some of the myths...

By Jon Trappe

Do you believe that if you collect clippings from a weedy lawn, it will cut down on the number of weeds next year?  What about bagging clippings to cut down on the amount of thatch in your turf? Get the real 'dirt' on these common misconceptions and more about lawn mowing.

Smart Irrigation Month

by Dan Sandor

July is annually recognized by the Irrigation Association as Smart Irrigation Month, but what does it mean to utilize smart irrigation? In a time of smartphones, smart watches, smart appliances, and smart homes why shouldn’t your lawn’s sprinkler system be just as intelligent?

Soil surfactants and critical soil moisture content

by Ryan Schwab

Water-repellent soils are one of the challenges faced by golf course superintendents. This phenomenon can cause localized dry spots, which are areas of wilted turfgrass struggling from a rootzone with poor water infiltration, poor water retention, and non-uniform flow of water among other important soil characteristics. The potential or severity of soil water repellency may increase once the soil dries down to a specific level. Our team conducted research on soil water repellency as part of a MGCSA Member-Driven Research project involving the soil surfactant, Cascade Plus.

Turfgrass species characteristics for roadsides

By Dominic Christensen

Turfgrass species are often planted to revegetate roadsides after construction, especially in cities and urban areas. This article highlights the rationale for use of individual species along roadsides, their advantages, and disadvantages in Minnesota or in regions with a similar climate.

Flowering Bee Lawn Field Day Open House

There is a lot of “buzz” about bee lawns lately, especially with the new law that Minnesota recently passed that will provide grants for homeowners to provide bee habitat. There is a great opportunity coming up to learn concrete ways to support bee pollinators in your yard.

University of Minnesota Turfgrass team in the media - 6/23/19

Check out our team’s latest efforts in educating the public about our work!  We have three articles, several podcasts and two public outreach events.

Assessment of rhizomatous growth in strong creeping red fescue for sustainable sod

By Nicole Mihelich

Rhizomes are an important physiological feature for many turfgrasses, and thus may be a trait deserving of more focus to cool-season turfgrass breeding and improvement. These specialized stems can store sugars, water, and nutrients, allowing for resilience and competitiveness when filing in a lawn, and also when facing seasonal temperature and moisture variation and environmental stresses. Additionally, formation and interlocking of rhizomes is thought to be helpful when harvesting and transplanting thick mats of vegetation in sod production.

Different ways to visualize herbicide stress

By Dominic Petrella

Most golf course putting greens in Minnesota are comprised of creeping bentgrass and annual bluegrass, but other turfgrass species may be suitable alternatives.  The University of Minnesota turf research program has investigated the use of fine fescue grasses on putting greens, as these are seen as a low-input option compared to creeping bentgrass putting greens.  However, under certain circumstances, a greater amount of inputs may be required, such as herbicide to control weeds that may diminish the low-input attribute.

Grad student James Wolfin in Star Tribune article

Graduate student James Wolfin was recently featured in a StarTribune article where he discusses how homeowners can have lawns, but still provide nectar resources for pollinators.