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Improving Turfgrass Through Research Standards Sod Quality Differentiation.

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Presentation on theme: "Improving Turfgrass Through Research Standards Sod Quality Differentiation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Standards Sod Quality Differentiation

2 Improving Turfgrass Through Research History of Grass Seed Industry Early commodity market - Public varieties Market prices set by traders at Western Seedsmen Merion Kentucky bluegrass - 1st improved Production and marketing of this was the foundation of many seed companies Initially only Kentucky bluegrasses protected under Plant Patent Law - vegetative reproduction Passage of Plant Variety Protection Law - return on investment - Private and Public breeding

3 Improving Turfgrass Through Research WA Sod Standards Must be free of ryegrass, orchardgrass, timothy, Agrostis sp., black medic, Poa trivialis, brome, reed canarygrass, tall fescue, clover, and meadow foxtail. Maximum allowable Canada bluegrass.02%. When the base sample is one of these kinds, the species will not be considered a contaminant (i.e., tall fescue in tall fescue). **Must be free of Big, Canby and Sandberg bluegrass, dock, chickweed, crabgrass, plantain, short-awn foxtail, annual bluegrass, velvetgrass, ((rattail fescue)) Vulpia sp., and noxious weed seeds as listed under WAC and WAC

4 Improving Turfgrass Through Research WA Sod Standards Must be free of black medic, orchardgrass, timothy, Agrostis sp., Poa trivialis, brome, reed canarygrass, tall fescue, clover and meadow foxtail. Maximum allowable Canada bluegrass 0.02%.**Maximum fluorescence levels as determined by breeder or variety owner.***Must be free of Big, Canby and Sandberg bluegrass, ((rattail fescue,)) dock, chickweed, crabgrass, plantain, annual bluegrass, velvetgrass, Vulpia sp., short-awn foxtail, and noxious weed seeds as listed under WAC and An additional 0.07% of weedy Bromus spp. will be allowed.****85% minimum germination allowed on ryegrass varieties as designated by the breeder or variety owner. See list maintained by the seed program.WAC

5 Improving Turfgrass Through Research WA Sod Standards (3) A sod seed analysis certificate is the basis of determining if a lot meets sod quality standards. This certificate is issued by the certifying agency and represents a purity analysis, a twenty-five gram noxious all weed all crop exam and a germination test, except a 50-gram noxious all weed all crop exam is required for fescues and ryegrass. (4) In addition to a seed certification tag, seed meeting sod quality certified seed standards will be tagged with a special "sod quality seed" tag.

6 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Who is your customer? Initial aim of Genetic Tool Contractor Landscaper Developer Retail Homeowner

7 Improving Turfgrass Through Research What are they buying? Go into Big Box Stores Look at labels Where are landscapers buying? List of competition may be very different Home Depot and Kmart in Oregon Named varieties but often common or older material Alene KBG, Boreal fescue, Protocol PR, Buccaneer PR, annual How is your customer going to know yours is better? How can you communicate it easily?

8 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Strategy Identify meaningful environmental, managerial, and economic factors on turf acres Match genetic traits with these factors Build EarthCarpet products around these traits Place these products with an Expert Seller Provide Expert Seller with tools to explain differences Simplified version of tools to explain to customer the differences Results are what matter

9 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Identify factors important to customers Some of these factors may not be rated in NTEP or you have to look to find data Breeding based on factors identified as important by salesmen and customers many years ago and value continued input In some cases do not win the NTEP competition because primarily rated for color and performance under best conditions

10 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Importance of Improved Genetics Perennial ryegrasses - Gray leaf spot, red thread, crown rust, brown patch resistance. Stress tolerance, dark green, improved mowing. Salt tolerance. Kentucky bluegrass - Heat and drought tolerance. Faster establishment. Shade tolerance. Longer growth period. Necrotic ring spot, leaf spot, summer patch resistance

11 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Importance of Improved Genetics Tall fescue - Rhizomes - greater expression and more quickly. Brown patch resistance. Denser, darker green and finer leaf texture. Stress resistance. Salt tolerance. Fine fescues - Heat and drought tolerance. Excellent performance in sun and shade. Fast establishment. Salt tolerance. Darker green. Disease resistance.

12 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Identify factors important to customers - we designed genetic tool based on your input Using data from various trials over many years we filled out tool Complications Mixtures and how they interact Ratings done on single species Not all characteristics were considered important in all species but need a number to represent a species in the mixture

13 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Sun and Shade blend at Home Depot and Kmart Alene Kentucky bluegrass30% Buccaneer or Protocol PR40% Boreal Red Fescue30% None of these will do well in shade. Boreal tends to thin out in shade. All others not adapted. Protocol - grower variety. High fluorescence NTEP - lowest 10% in that trial Alene - Common, leaf spot, powdery mildew susceptible

14 Improving Turfgrass Through Research Genetic Tool Note often components of these mixtures have names Older varieties Common varieties with names Some of the components may be the same as your less expensive mixtures Genetic tool helps distinguish your mixtures - why should a customer buy a certain mixture Helps sell your mixtires over others Simplify for brochures / point of sale


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