ESTABLISHMENT OF WARM SEASON TURFGRASS SPECIES BY TRANSPLANT OF SINGLE POTTED PLANTS
Turfgrass establishment in Italy in the last ten years has witnessed an increase in the use of warm season species, usually established by sodding, stolonizing or, less frequently, by plugging. In the last two years a new establishment technique has been gaining ground that transplants single plants of warm season turfgrasses grown in honeycomb trays, using standard horticultural practices. The aim of this study was the evaluation of warm season turfgrass establishment rates using this technique. Research was carried out at the CeRTES (Turf Research Center) of Pisa University during May-November 2006. Species and cultivars evaluated were: Cynodon dactylon 'Princess 77'; Cynodon dactylon × C. transvaalensis 'Tifway 419'; Paspalum vaginatum 'Seaspray'; Zoysia japonica 'Zenith'; Zoysia matrella 'Zeon'. Results showed rapid turf establishment for bermudagrass (6 weeks for 'Tifway 419' and 8 weeks for 'Princess 77') and 10 weeks for seashore paspalum. Establishment for manilagrass and Japanese zoysiagrass also proved relatively quick (95 and 110 days respectively). Highest stolon weekly growth during June was achieved by 'Tifway 419' (17.3 cm week-1) while lowest was achieved by 'Zeon' (2.7 cm week-1). In September, in mature stands, stolon and rhizome density was particularly high for 'Tifway 419' bermudagrass (7.4 cm cm-2), while lowest was observed for Japanese zoysiagrass (3.0 cm cm-2). This establishment technique enables a fast recovery by plants after transplant, thus obtaining quick cover by bermudagrass and full establishment in one growing season by notoriously slow-growing zoysiagrass.
Volterrani, M., Grossi, N., Lulli, F. and Gaetani, M. (2008). ESTABLISHMENT OF WARM SEASON TURFGRASS SPECIES BY TRANSPLANT OF SINGLE POTTED PLANTS. Acta Hortic. 783, 77-84
bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, seashore paspalum, ground cover, stolon growth