4 General Tall Fescue (Schedonorus phoenix) + Excellent wear tolerance after establishment+ Good in transition zone or warmer regions of U.S.+ Good drought tolerance+/- Moderate seedling growth and establishment+/- Moderate soil compaction tolerance- Poor recuperative ability and sod knitting- Disease problems (e.g., brown patch)
5 Tall Fescue (Schedonorus phoenix) Establishment Method: Seeding and occasionally sod.Appearance: Medium-coarse to coarse texture with low density.Growth Habit: Primarily bunch-type.Environmental Adaptation: Good in transition zone or warmer regions of U.S.; adapts to wide range of soils and environments. Full sun; tolerates some shade. Does well in heat and drought. Tolerates short periods of submersion. Excellent wear tolerance after establishment. Moderate soil compaction tolerance. Poor recuperative ability and sod knitting. Disease problems (e.g., brown patch).
6 By the numbers: seed per pound, seeding rate, and days to germination Approximately 178,000 to 234,000 seeds/lb.Seeding Rate lb./1000ft2Approximately 4-12 days to germination
7 Planting With Other Cool-Season Species Kentucky bluegrassPerennial ryegrass
11 U. Of I. Tall Fescue Maintenance Research Plots were maintained at four nitrogen fertility levels (0, 2, 4, and 6 pounds N per 1,000 ft.2 per year)Plots were maintained three mowing heights (1, 2, and 3 inches).Overall, plots maintained at 3 inches were usually the highest quality.Tall fescue plots maintained at 1 inch had significantly more crabgrass cover than plots maintained at 2 or 3 inches.
12 U. Of I. Tall Fescue Maintenance Research (cont.) All fertility rates usually produced tall fescue plots of significantly higher quality than the unfertilized tall fescue plots.Fertility rates of 2 pound N per 1,000 ft.2 per year usually produced tall fescue of unacceptable quality during periods of more than one month following a fertilizer application.6 pounds N per 1,000 ft.2 per year usually produced significantly higher turf quality during July and October than 4 pounds N per 1,000 ft.2 per year.Plots receiving 2, 4, and 6 pounds N per 1,000 ft.2 per year had significantly less broadleaf weed cover than the unfertilized plots.
13 Tall Fescue Maintenance Recommendations Related to brown patch incidence.Mow at 2.5 to 3.5 inches.Supply pounds of N/M/year.Supply P and K based on soil tests.Supply water as necessary.Thatch is not normally a problem.
17 Tall Fescue is a Cool-Season Grass Optimal root growth when soil temperatures are between 50° and 65°F and shoot growth when air temperatures are between 60° and 75°F.Flower in late spring or early summer.Photosynthesis - inefficient in hot conditions.Establish early in late summer period.
21 Soil CompactionTall fescue suffered a significant quality decline (% coverage, shoot density, and size of individual plants) with increasing compactionRooting did increase with increasing compaction(Carrow, GA)
22 Tall Fescues and Drought Very good overall resistance to drought (the ability to avoid and tolerate drought).Excellent drought avoidance (the ability to postpone tissue dehydration primarily by deep rooting).Fair drought tolerance (the ability to recover after experiencing drought stress).In general, dwarf cultivars (e.g., Bonsai) show inferior rooting and poor tolerance to soil drying compared to pasture types or non-dwarf turf types.
23 Deficit IrrigationTurf-type tall fescues maintained quality when irrigated:50% ET every two days75% ET every 4, 7, or 14 days60% ET twice weeklyET = evapotranspiration or sum of water lost through evaporation from the soil and transpiration from the turf(Kansas, Colorado)
24 Brown Patch and Gray Leaf Spot on Tall Fescues Night temperatures > 60° F.More than 10 hours foliar wetness per day for several daysLush turf (> ½ N/month)Low P and KGray Leaf SpotTemperatures 77° – 86° F.Extended period of foliar wetnessShady locations with poor air circulationHigh N with wet foliageYoung seedlings
25 Environmental Tolerances Acid and alkaline soilsLow managementQuick establishmentWet and dry soilsDry shadeErosion control
26 Endophytic Fungi on Tall Fescues Acremonium coenophialumfound in leaves and seeds of grass plantsproduces substances toxic to microbes and animals (do not plant if tall fescues are for grazing)improved tolerances to leaf-feeding insects (e.g., sod webworms), some nematodes, environmental stresses, weed invasionincreased growth and tilllering, better recovery from brown patch and dollar spotrequest endophytic seed when purchasingshort lived in seed
27 Rhizomatous Tall Fescue (RTF) Ohio State research tested six different RTF varieties: Labarinth RTF, Grande II, Titan Ltd., Rendition, Kittyhawk 2000 and Winter Active FescueWinter Active and Grande II were dense, and had excellent color and a fine leaf texture.Rhizome Activity/DevelopmentWinter Active Fescue %Titan Ltd. + Rendition + Kittyhawk %Grande II - 11%Labarinth RTF - 10%Rendition – 6%
39 Top Performers in Illinois NTEP 2012 Tall Fescue Trial (2013-2015 evaluations) 4th Millennium SRP, Avenger II, BIZEM, Black Tail, Bullseye, Catalyst, Faith, Firebird 2, Firecracker SLS, Firewall, Grande 3, GTO, Hemi, Hot Rod, Kingdom, Maestro, Michelangelo, Raptor III, Reflection, Regenerate, Rowdy, Saltillo, Technique, Temple, Terrano, Titanium 2LS, Traverse 2 SRP, XtenderAlso in top group in 2006 IL Trial
40 Tall Fescue Use Recommendations Use non-dwarf turf-type tall fescues for lawns, parks, golf course roughs where moderate quality turf is desired andUse pasture types (e. g., Kentucky 31, Alta, Fawn) for utility purposes.Allow to become fully established prior to traffickingUse high seeding rates when planting dwarf typesPlant a blendUse caution when mixing species
41 Tall Fescue as a WeedHand dig, spot-apply glyphosate, control with chlorsulfuron in industrial settings
42 Un-Mowed, Low-Maintenance Roughs, Parks, and Roadsides
50 Exotic Grasses in Low-Maintenance Areas - Un-Mowed Roughs, Parks, and Roadsides Relatively easy to establish and maintainSeed is inexpensive and availableAttractive, especially in the early seasonShade tolerance