Monday, March 3, 2008

Cool and Warm Season Grasses

For the purposes of golf course management, the world can be divided into two climate areas when it comes to selecting turfgrasses most suited to sustainable management. These are:

- Cool

Cool season species are those best adapted to soil temperatures between 60 to 75 °F during the growing season. For these grasses, root and shoot growth is severely restricted at soil temperatures above 81 °F.
Warm season species are best adapted to soil temperatures of 81 to 95 °F. Dormancy sets in for these grasses when soil temperatures drop below 50 to 56 °F.
Plant breeding programs are trying to produce more heat-tolerant cool season grasses and warm season species which have delayed dormancy and retain color at cooler soil temperatures.
Cool and warm are very broad categories and individual species will be favored or damaged by the interaction of light, temperature, precipitation and wind at any particular site, which will be affected by altitude as well as latitude.
The main cool and warm season grasses found globally on regularly maintained areas of golf courses are:

Cool Season

- Creeping Bentgrass ( Agrostis stolonifera, A. palustris )
- Velvet Bentgrass ( Agrostis canina )
- Annual Bluegrass ( Poa annua )
- Kentucky Bluegrass ( Poa pratensis )
-Fescue ( Festuca ssp.)
-Perennial ryegrass ( Lolium perenne )

Warm Season

- Bermudagrass Hybrid ( Cynodon dactylon x C. transvaalensis )
- Kikuyugrass ( Pennisetum clandestinum )
-Seashore Paspalum ( Paspalum vaginatum )
- Zoysiagrass ( Zoysia ssp. )