SportsTurf

October 2017

SportsTurf provides current, practical and technical content on issues relevant to sports turf managers, including facilities managers. Most readers are athletic field managers from the professional level through parks and recreation, universities.

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www.spor tsturfonline.com 34 // October 2017 KREUSER: I have a three way split: 50% Extension, 35% Research, 15% Teaching. I enjoy having this split because my applied research is applicable to my extension and teaching programs. I teach two, three credit, courses each year (Advanced Turf Management and Physiology and Urban Soils). I also advise four graduate students and several undergraduate research students. A big part of the research component includes writing grants to fund my students and program, publishing research articles, and actually doing the experiments (design, data collection, analysis and interpretation). Extension responsibilities are multifaceted with site visits and articles in the summer, appearances on our Backyard Farmer TV show, a couple dozen extension publications around the country each winter. I spend a lot of time continuing to develop, market, and run tech support for our app, GreenKeeperApp.com. The interactions with students during teaching and growers during extension helps to shape our research. It is a synergistic relationship. Where is your state regarding any pesticide/ herbicide bans or restrictions, and what is your message to turf managers regarding the issue? MCCALL: I would say that Virginia is somewhat middle-of-the-road on pesticide bans or restrictions. We do not have the widespread struggles that some of our neighbors face, though there are some municipalities that have moved forward with legislation to reduce certain inputs. Most pesticide regulatory decisions are made at the state level. The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services works well with Virginia Tech and many commodity associations to ensure that pesticides are applied safely and with the least deleterious impact on the environment as possible. My message to turf mangers is to stay ahead of future regulations by doing things the right way; practice sound cultural practices so that your pesticide applications are most effective, keep good records of everything you apply, and always search for ways to reduce chemical inputs without sacrifi cing playability. MCCURDY: Off target effects of dicamba have resulted in restrictions on its use for row-crop agriculture, but it's still available in various forms for turf. It's old news, but MSMA is restricted use and can't be applied to sports fi elds. Buy from a reputable dealer and make sure you're following label instructions. Read the label! MURPHY: New Jersey has had bills proposed that would severely restrict and, in some cases, ban pesticides. Much of this proposed regulation has been targeted at school and municipal grounds. To date, New Jersey has passed legislation that mandates Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for indoor and outdoor pesticide usage on schools. The School IPM law also requires direct notifi cation of pesticide use to students, parents and staff. Some have incorrectly interpreted the School IPM law as a ban on pesticides, which has made educational efforts more challenging. Similarly, many people think that IPM and the organic management philosophy are the same. Thus, we often spend a fair amount of time teaching people what IPM is and isn't before we get to details of actual IPM practices. My message to turf managers is to stay current with the latest information on pest management strategies. Being knowledgeable and credible on pesticide regulations and pest management philosophies is crucial to a constructive discussion in developing appropriate regulation of pesticides. KREUSER: Not much of an issue. DELVALLE: Currently, Pennsylvania doesn't have any major pesticide restrictions like some of our neighboring states, but that would presumably change in future years. We educate turf managers on these issues, as some of them already deal with them if they perform work in these nearby states. Discussions do occur on pesticides at the local level and it is important that the voice of our industry must be heard before regulations are put in place, and not after. In some cases, those who make decisions on restricting the use of pesticides have not included the users of these products, which is not a desirable situation. How have any recent budget cuts (or increases!) affected your work? MCCURDY: My lab pays a higher percentage of the bills than we used to, there's no doubt, but at Mississippi State, we've got great support. The state's industry is growing and administration sees value in keeping a turf teaching and research program. While government funding for higher education and research is certainly important, I think we too frequently overlook the importance of industry responsibility and support (see my next response). MURPHY: Budget cuts at Rutgers are certainly challenging, which I am sure is of no surprise. Receiving a grant award is about the only way to effectively see a budget increase; preparing and submitting Tanner Delvalle Jared Hoyle, PhD

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