Older video but applicable for current conditions
An alternative method for measuring putting green firmness.
Reducing grain and improving leaf texture
The color of hybrid blues has significantly improved the last few years. Thermal Blue and Solar Green are moderate green in color. Thermal Blue Blaze and DuraBlue are similar in their dark green color to Kentucky bluegrass cultivars like Midnight & Blacksburg. We have not evaluated Reveille, Longhorn or Bandera.
After 10 weeks of establishment, simulated traffic was applied to the plots. In our trial, Thermal Blue reacted to simulated traffic in a similar fashion to the aggressive cultivars of bluegrass, such as Bariris. Both the aggressive bluegrass and the hybrid bluegrass performed well under traffic conditions, compared to other bluegrass cultivars. While the hybrid bluegrasses may take as long to germinate & establish as Kentucky bluegrasses, once established they have prolific growth & recovery - similar to the aggressive types of Kentucky bluegrass classified by Rutgers.
Rhizome development in hybrid blues also appears similar to the aggressive cultivars of Kentucky bluegrass. In our study Thermal Blue had statistically the same number of rhizomes as Bariris (an aggressive blue). Prolific rhizome development offers many advantages - earlier sod harvesting, increased surface shear strength, wear resistance etc. Interestingly, Kentucky bluegrasses cultivars differ in their rhizome numbers - particularly if mixed with other grass species.
Picture left: Prolific rhizome growth on Thermal Blue & Bariris Kentucky bluegrass compared to Rugby 2 Kentucky bluegrass mixed with tall fescue & Rugby 2 Kentucky bluegrass mixed with perennial ryegrass.
Table left: Percentage of turfgrass plants with rhizomes
Drought & heat tolerance appears to be the one area that demands more research. Recent finding would suggest that the hybrids are not as drought tolerant as tall fescues in the southern and transitional zones of the USA. Comparing hybrids directly to Kentucky bluegrass cultivars seems to be somewhat more complex. Possibly because there is such variability among hybrid & Kentucky bluegrass cultivars.
In summary, the hybrid bluegrasses appear to react the same as bluegrasses, particularly the aggressive bluegrasses. Improved color of hybrids will be a benefit when mixing them with other grass species. Research at other institutions has yielded the same kinds of results. For example, hybrids appear to react similarly to Kentucky bluegrasses in billbug tolerance or susceptibility and herbicide tolerance. One study does suggest that Thermal blue is tolerant of Velocity herbicide but little is known about the other hybrid bluegrass cultivars.
This posting is also available as a Buckeye Turf Podcast
May take a few minutes to load
For other podcasts visit Buckeye Turf Podcasts
Authors: Pam Sherratt & John Street
Golf Course Management Certificate: This certificate program was developed to challenge and test individuals of all ages interested in advancing their knowledge in golf course management. Learn more and/or enroll in this certificate. Sports Field Management Certificate: This certificate program was developed to challenge and test individuals of all ages interested in advancing their knowledge in sports field management. Learn more and/or enroll in this certificate.
Delivering science-based information on turf management in: Spanish Globalcesped.org Portuguese Globalrelva.org Polish Globaldarn.org Czech Globaldrn.org China Chinagtn.orgRussia Globalpokrov.org
Are you a member? Join at:GlobalTurf Network
Copyright OSU Buckeye Turf Program. Website manager: Dr. Tim Rhodus