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Sports Field Short Course Recap

Monday, March 3, 2014   (0 Comments)
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 Another packed house for the 2014 Sports Field Short Course!
Written by Ryan DeMay
Grounds Manager - Berliner Sports Park

The 17th Annual Sports Field Short Course was held on February 20th and 21st at the Nationwide Insurance and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center on the campus of The Ohio State University.  Sports Field professionals from around the state gathered for this educational event where the presenters were both academics and peers in the industry.  While many ideas were shared amongst the group, each presenter had take-home messages on their topics for the attendees.

Stinkbugs, Mosquitoes & Hornets Oh My! - Dr. David Shetlar, Ohio State

●      Stinkbugs are nothing more than a nuisance pest for turfgrass managers and in that regard they probably reached their peak population in Ohio late last year.

The Potential Benefits of Using Pigments & Dyes on Athletic Fields - Mr. Dominic Petrella, Ohio State

●      Pigments and dyes can be separated into two classifications, short-term products (dyes) last a week or less and long-term products (pigments) last two weeks and sometimes longer.

●      Good data from OSU and other sites shows that pigments and dyes do have beneficial effects on turf. More Sports Turf-specific research to come this year at OSU between Mr. Patrella and Mrs. Pam Sherratt.

New Trends in Synthetic Turf Management - Zach Burns, The Motz Group

●      Read and understand your warranty.  Know how to protect your investment and also know what practices, or lack thereof, will void your warranty.

●      Brush/groom synthetic surfaces at least twice per month and more frequently with increased usage.

●      Maintain proper infill levels throughout the field and especially in high-traffic and wear areas.

Thinking About Starting a Composting Program at Your Facility? - Mr. Chuck Hurlow, Kenyon College

●      Understand the permitting process and regulations before starting a compost program.

●      Drastic reductions in fertilizer budgets are possible when substituting compost applications for fertilizer applications.

Disease Update - Mr. Joe Rimelspach, Ohio State

●      Train your operators to recognize signs of disease and report them immediately.

●      Manage cultural practices to reduce Dollar Spot and Brown Patch as they are the most prevalent diseases seen on athletic fields.

Baseball in Focus: Lip Management - Mr. Matt Duncan, Nature’s Wonder

●      Dragging fields can be the most destructive practice done to an infield skin if not done properly; train your operators accordingly.

●      Laser grade fields at least every other year and establish maintenance practices that will ensure the integrity of that grade throughout the year.

A New Perspective on Aeration and Topdressing - Dr. Karl Danneberger, Ohio State

●      New equipment makes it possible to aerate more frequently with less disruption, invest in the advanced technology for maximum benefit.

●      Sand topdressing, topdressing with compost, or a combination of the two have all been shown to improve turf performance and playability.

New Herbicide Technology for Grassy Weeds and Poa annua - Dr. John Street, Ohio State

●      Newer chemistries are showing enhanced effectiveness in selectively removing bermudagrass and goosegrass from cool season turf.

●      Use of pre-emergent herbicides in both spring and fall has shown to be effective at preventing Poa annua.

Growing Bermudagrass in the North - Mr. Darian Daily, Paul Brown Stadium/Cincinnati Bengals

●      Newer cultivars of bermudagrass including Patriot and Riviera have adapted well to northern climates. Newest cultivars including Northbridge and Latitude 36 look even better.

●      Work to be done at OSU this year to test performance of each cultivar for use on athletic fields.

Predicting & Diagnosing Turf Problems - Mrs. Pamela Sherratt, Ohio State

●      Having the tools you need to gather and collect data including Clegg Meter for firmness, TDR moisture probes for moisture content, and a Shear Vane to measure sod shear strength, is essential to measuring performance and predicting potential issues.

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