WCTA Announces 2016 Turf Research Project Funding

12.01.11-WCTA-in-PullmanWA200Based on funds raised in 2015, cash available to the Research Committee for 2016 projects is $13,598. As recommended by the Research Committee, the WCTA Board is pleased to announce $17,000 in approved 2016 Turf Research project funding as follows (difference will be made up from reserves):

Project Title: Canadian Turf Research Foundation Cooperative Funding
The CTRF collects and distributes research monies much like the WCTA but on a National Scale.  We have contributed to this collaborative approach to research funding annually since 1992. 
PROJECT LENGTH:   multiple projects / varies
See http://www.turfresearchcanada.ca/current-research for list of current research projects.

Project Title: Evaluation of Alternative Management Strategies to Reduce or Eliminate the Use of Fungicides for Control of Microdochium Patch, Oregon State University
More money is spent on fungicides to control Microdochium patch than any other turfgrass disease in Western Canada and the Pacific Northwest United States. Turfgrass managers continue to be scrutinized when it comes to pesticide use for the control of problematic turf pests. This project will evaluate cultural practices as well as new alternative products that have shown potential to control Microdochium patch. Each component will be evaluated individually and upon completion of the two year research project be integrated into a complete management program for the control of Microdochium patch with the intent of greatly reducing or eliminating fungicide use.
COMMITMENT:   $15,000 USD or approx. $21,000 CDN (50/50 split with OTRF with each group contributing $10,500)

Project Title: Investigation of the Okanagan Valley Resident Canada Goose Sub-population to Assist with Strategic Goose Management
Our goal is to investigate the resident (i.e. non-migratory) sub-population of Canada geese that reside within the Okanagan Valley. Our study will help determine how geese use the valley spatially and temporally. In doing so we expect to discover a) if the population is closed (e.g. new geese do not immigrate into or emigrate from the population, and population growth occurs from locally nesting birds), b) if the goose population seasonally fluctuates due to migration patterns of non-resident geese (e.g. do migratory Canada geese that have nested in northern Canada boost the valley sub-population during spring and fall migration or winter?), and c) if the valley goose sub-population uses the entire valley or if geese restrict their movements to specific areas (e.g. do geese in specific communities use only the respective community region or do they migrate along the valley and to what extent?). Understanding these questions will be extremely advantageous to designing and implementing management techniques to alleviate conflict with resident Canada geese and reduce goose-related damage and management costs.

Current priorities for WCTA turfgrass research funding are as follows: 

  • Nutrient and fertility management, best management practices 
  • Soil and root-zone management, best management practices 
  • Evaluation of alternatives to pesticides 
  • Irrigation and water use issues (water quality and reducing water usage)
  • Investigations into the biology, ecology and management of current and emerging pests
  • Alternative cultivar and species for new turf construction, integration and conversion into existing turf areas
  • Species/cultivar evaluation and improved management practices for areas of heavy traffic and wear tolerance

Thank you to all those who have contributed to our turf research program!