P. Croce, A. De Luca, M. Mocioni, M. Volterrani, J.B. Beard
In all the Mediterranean area the limitations on water availability is a major and developing concern. Traditionally cool season grasses have been used in Italy for establishing high maintenance turfgrasses. The objective of this study was to evaluate the adaptability of five warm season grass species to the Mediterranean environment in Italy, from the point of view of winter color retention, color, seedheads production and root biomass. For the first two aims a total of 31 cultivars of Cynodon spp., Zoysia spp., Paspalum vaginatum, Stenotaphrum secundatum and Buchloe dactyloides have been investigated. For seedheads and root biomass production a total of 30 cultivars have been assessed. The experiment was carried out over a 5 y period for the turfgrass quality, and over a 1 y period for dormancy length. Cultural practices were maintained to represent the standard maintenance of golf course fairways, with the exception of Buchloe dactyloides and Stenotaphrum secundatum cultivars. The experimental site was west of Rome near Casalpalocco, Italy. The results of the study revealed that vegetatively propagated cultivars performed better than seeded cultivars in terms of turfgrass quality and seedheads production, but also in terms of color retention. Brown cover had more variability among cultivars. Some Zoysia cultivars had very good color retention during the autumn and winter as well as a limited winter dormancy length. Buchloe dactyloides did not adapt the Mediterranean climate under these experimental conditions. Stenotaphrum secundatum performed well and could be used in Mediterranean climate for producing low maintenance turfgrasses.
Croce, P., De Luca, A., Mocioni, M., Volterrani, M. and Beard, J.B. (2004). ADAPTABILITY OF WARMSEASON TURFGRASS SPECIES AND CULTIVARS IN A MEDITERRANEAN CLIMATE. Acta Hortic. 661, 365-368
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2004.661.49
brown cover, color retention, root biomass, seedheads, vegetative, turfgrass quality, Cynodon spp., Zoysia spp.

Acta Horticulturae