Optimizing Turfgrass Nutritional Requirements

Newsletter, July 2018

July and August are great months for maintaining warm-season (C4) turf; the intense sunlight, heat and humidity elevates the overall growth potential of C4 plants by increasing photosynthesis and respiration rates.

Warm-season turf thrives in hot and humid environments, and becomes a metabolizing machine during these periods, especially bermudagrass. It produces new shoot-growth daily and requires consistent mowing, especially on golf greens. As clippings are removed and nutrients are utilized, plant nutritional decisions should be determined by using recent soil and tissue data plus a basic understanding of the growth potential.

During elevated growth periods, apply soluble plant nutritional sources by foliar or topdress applications to ensure consistent feeding. Nitrate sources are immediately plant available and are less prone to volatilization than other sources.

Seasonal Shoot and Root Growth of Warm Season Turfgrasses (Turgeon 2002)

warm season turfgrass illustration_cropped.png

Sustaining a healthy stand of turf starts with root health. Providing readily available nutrients that assist in root growth and formation of root-hairs is essential for enduring environmental challenges. Furthermore, as plant transpiration intensifies due to increased evaporation rates, maintaining healthy roots are important for continuous nutrient and water absorption.

Remember, managing turf is dynamic and nutritional programs are beneficial when there is a balance that reflects the overall growth potential. Also, always monitor weather conditions and use best management practices when applying plant nutritional products for increasing efficacy and protecting the environment.

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Neil Mayberry
Neil Mayberry
Regional Market Development Manager