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SportsTurf Magazine
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Follow the re-sodding at Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta

June 30, 2015

The Rolling Stones had their turn at Bobby Dodd Stadium June 9. For the rest of the summer, the main performers will be Georgia Tech assistant director of facilities and turf Jon DeWitt and the Georgia Tech groundskeeping crew.

Read more and see photos here

 

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What to do now about crabgrass

June 30, 2015

The rains have encouraged crabgrass to germinate and resume active growth much more rapidly than our perennial desirable grasses. In bare areas crabgrass plants are as much as 5-tiller! If you want to see how big your crabgrass is, check out Professor Aaron Patten’s article in Turf Republic (LINK). Starting with growth stage you can determine the best strategy.

Smaller plants (<1 tiller) can still be picked up by dithiopyr and get the prebenefits of dithiopyr as well. Small and mid-size plants can be treated with Acclaim, Tenacity and Pylex. Larger plants are best treated with quinchlorac, however here is a stage between 2-5 tiller where quinchlorac does not perform effectively. Now that crabgrass is vigorously growing control should be excellent. Be prepared to reseed these areas.

 

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Ohio State has online baseball field management course

June 30, 2015

Pamela Sherratt says Ohio State Turf has launched a new online course on Baseball Field Management. Learn from anywhere and work at your own pace! Course presentations and testing are completed online. Lectures developed by leading turfgrass educators at The Ohio State University and industry professionals. Please see this link to the website that hosts all our online courses. Online classes for industry professionals: http://hcs.osu.edu/plantscienceonline

 

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Podcast from Beacon Athletics celebrating groundskeeping

June 30, 2015

This podcast is dedicated to the artistry and science of sports field management. Diamond Davincis celebrates the men and women in the sports field industry whose fields are their canvas. This podcast will discuss ballfields and their artists at all levels — from the little leagues to the bigs, and everywhere in between. From time to time we may venture into the world of football and soccer groundskeeping. Golf? Forget about it! They have their own shows. We hope to educate, inform and entertain you with interviews from around the sports field management industry. Give your mind a break while working on your fields and give us a listen. Email questions directly to podcast@beaconathletics.com.

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A memento World Cup players carry with them, like it or not

June 25, 2015
Before the United States played Sweden in a Women’s World Cup match here this month, some American fans waited in line for hours to be the first to enter the stadium. When the gates finally opened, it was like the running of the bulls. Parents sprinted down the main concourse. Preteen girls dodged food carts and garbage cans to cut in front of people ahead of them. They were not off to their seats; their destination was the souvenir shop. In a matter of minutes, a line snaked out the store’s doors. Those poor people. What they didn’t know was that the best memento from this World Cup was actually down on the field, hidden — for the moment — between the blades of fake grass. Millions upon millions of tiny rubber pellets. Read the New York Times article, here
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Artificial turf influence in high school sports rising in Southeast

June 25, 2015

Fifteen minutes into his team’s Class AAA state championship game at Mercer University, West Hall striker Sammy Coto was pouring ice water into his boots, trying to adjust to the new feeling of the AstroTurf at Five Star Stadium.

By the end of his team’s 3-1 win over Calhoun, the senior said he thought synthetic turf would become the wave of the future for student-athletes.

“There’s definitely an adjustment period,” he said. “But once I did adjust, I felt myself running a lot faster, I could handle (the ball) better. I felt faster, and could beat the defenders.”

Read it all here

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VA school, county leaders consider artificial turf alternatives

June 25, 2015

County and school leaders have agreed to look into the potential health risks the rubber on artificial turf fields may cause athletes and consider safer alternatives.

The crumbs of recycled tires that fill most of the synthetic grass fields in Loudoun County contain chemicals and concerns raised by recent news reports are worth following up on, according to Loudoun County Health Department Director Dr. David Goodfriend.

“Both as the director of the health department and father of two daughters who play sports on fields with crumb rubber, it’s important to me to know what the risks are,” he told the Joint Board of Supervisors/School Board Committee.

Read it all here

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Synthetic Turf Council names Al Garver new president

June 25, 2015

The Synthetic Turf Council (STC), recently announced Al Garver, CAE, as its next president of the national non-profit trade association for the synthetic turf industry. Garver will become the third president of the 12-year-old organization.  He brings to the position an extensive background in developing and advancing strategic plans, member-focused advocacy, public policy objectives, and membership programs.

“The STC is very fortunate to have Al joining the organization,” said Robert Thomas, Chairman of the STC Board of Directors and President of ProGrass, LLC, Pittsburgh, PA. “He’s a proven leader with a wealth of experience that will serve the membership well and strengthen our future. The addition of Al Garver to an already excellent STC staff will strengthen its ability to pursue the membership and industry’s objectives.”

Maintaining two career tracks, military and civilian, he began his 32-year military career in the U.S. Air Force and progressed up the ranks in the Guard and Reserve to serve on the Air Staff at the Pentagon. He is one of the top 150 enlisted leaders out of 460,000 soldiers and airmen serving in the National Guard. His military training has included high-level strategic planning and communications.

In his most recent position as the Executive Director of the Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the U.S. (EANGUS), he successfully led a 43 year-old organization, which serves a constituency base of well over 400,000 soldiers and airmen and their families.

Garver earned his Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Oregon University. He will complete his Master of Business Administration later this year from University of Phoenix.

Garver succeeds current President Rick Doyle, who is retiring in October 2015, after a successful nine years of leading the STC.

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Bill to ban rubber turf in CA dies

June 25, 2015

A bill that would place a temporary ban on the installation of athletic turf and playground surfacing containing recycled scrap tires has died in committee.

Senate Bill 47, sponsored by California Sen. Jerry Hill (D-13th District), would have prohibited the installation of rubber turf or grants funding its installation while the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment conducted a study to determine the possible adverse health effects of the material.

SB 47 was held in the California Senate Committee on Appropriations after a May 28 hearing, according the California Senate website. This means that, under the rules of the California Senate, the bill can no longer be considered, according to FieldTurf, a Montreal-based artificial turf manufacturer.

“With over 50 studies and reports showing crumb rubber does not increase health risks, FieldTurf is pleased that common sense and science prevailed in this discussion,” the company said in a statement. “We will continue to support any additional effort to demonstrate the safety of crumb rubber products.”

SB 47 was endorsed by Hollywood stars including actors Laura Dern, Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen and Courteney Cox and singer Sheryl Crow. Those performers sent a letter to Sen. Hill March 17, expressing strong support for the bill and concern over potential carcinogens found in scrap tires.

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Fresno home builder makes synthetic turf standard, grass an option

June 25, 2015

In the latest sign of the drought’s impact, synthetic turf is now standard in all front yards at Granville Homes while grass has become an option for home buyers.

It’s a bold and expensive move for the Fresno home builder — which may be the first statewide — to say out with water-sucking grass and in with the drought-friendly alternative as the state enters another dry summer.

Read more here

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Iowa State University expands sports turf research

June 16, 2015

A rugged expanse of exposed black dirt at an Iowa State University research farm will soon take on the lush emerald color of the outfield of a professional ballpark.
The four-acre stretch located at the ISU Horticulture Research Station north of Ames will allow researchers to experiment with soil content and management practices to improve sports turf across the Midwest.
A pair of research associates began tearing up the section of ground with a bulldozer last week, moving between 5,000 and 6,000 cubic yards of soil. Once all that dirt’s been leveled, they’ll plant a mixture of primarily Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass, which is consistent with most sports fields in the Midwest.

Read all about it here

 

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Surfactants increase irrigation efficiency

June 16, 2015

Surfactants, commonly called wetting agents, are products that increase water infiltration and improve water distribution uniformity in soils. They are especially helpful when applied to sandy soils which can develop an issue called hydrophobicity. Individual sand grains of hydrophobic soils get coated with organic matter and waxes from plant roots that repel water once the soil dries down. Turf grown on sand-based root zones can develops severe localized dry spots (LDS) especially when the stand is irrigated deep and infrequently. Surfactants help promote water infiltration into these hydrophobic areas which prevents and alleviates LDS. Preventative applications of surfactants should be made to high risk (sandy soils). Frequent preventative applications prevent development of LDS and increases soil water uniformity. Research at UW-Madison showed that preventative surfactant application increased soil water uniformity and sustained high visual turfgrass quality at very low levels of irrigation (30% pET)1 . Preventative applications of surfactant are a great way to increase irrigation precision which reduces water use while maximizing playing conditions. It’s an essential part of sound putting green management. Learn more about surfactant application rate and timing, modern irrigation auditing, and summer desiccation prevention at our Summer Field Day on July 22, 2015. Sign up today! https://goo.gl/iSm7S3 Bill Kreuser, Assistant Professor, Extension Turfgrass Specialist, wkreuser2@unl.edu

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5 tips to promote yourself with ease and confidence

June 16, 2015

A lot of people think they should just be recognized for their effort and rewarded accordingly, without any need for self-promotion. Unfortunately, in today’s competitive workplace, if you assume that hard work alone is enough to get ahead, it’s very likely you will be left behind by those who haven’t shied away from self-promotion. Read the 5 tips here.

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10 ways to integrate cooling into venues

June 16, 2015

Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy is developing and improving environmentally friendly cooling technology that will allow soccer to be played in the country year-round after the 2022 World Cup.

The following ten cooling methods are part of an integrated approach in the design of different facilities and venues from concept design phase, to ensure they leave a lasting legacy for their communities to use and enjoy the benefits of sport:

  1. Solar shading
    By building in such a way as to keep not only people, but also specific areas of a building out of direct sunlight, it’s possible to reduce the heat absorbed by a structure by as much as 85%. This can range from strategically planting suitable vegetation around buildings to selecting specialist materials than limit solar transmission.
  2. Natural ventilation
    Throughout its history, Qatar has sought natural ways to keep cool, and the importance of building ventilation systems into houses, souqs and other structures, has been recognized here for centuries. By utilizing natural forces, such as differences in pressure caused by wind, which draws air towards low pressure areas, and/or thermal buoyancy which causes hot air to be displaced by cooler air, natural ventilation can serve two functions that would otherwise have to be provided by mechanical systems, namely reducing the temperature of an area and improving indoor air quality by ventilation.
  3. Night-time ventilation
    Although Qatar experiences extreme temperatures during summer days, nights are breezier and cooler. This shift will be an advantage during the 2022 FIFA World Cup™ with night-time ventilation technology, which is also renewable. This process relies on the walls, floors and other surfaces being cooled at night when temperatures are lower. The cooled surfaces are then able to absorb heat during the day thus allowing people within the area to enjoy a cooler environment.
  4. Evaporative cooling
    Evaporative cooling utilizes the cooling effect generated by water as it absorbs heat to change state to a vapor in the process of evaporation. It is most widely understood from the process of perspiration, but it can also be used to keep buildings cool. Just as sweat evaporates to cool your body by absorbing heat, a water spray near a near a building or space absorbs heat and evaporates to create a cooler local environment.
  5. Passive Cooling
    Passive cooling is the process of cooling a space or building without use of energy input. Some of the walkways outside of the 2022 stadiums will be passively cooled. Passive cooling can be used in combination with other methods and leads to reduction of energy-intensive cooling systems. For some spaces inside buildings, passive cooling may be sufficient for achieving the desired air quality and comfort levels.
  6. Mechanical ventilation
    Mechanical ventilation involves the supply of outdoor air to, or removal of room air from, a building using electrically powered fans. There are three basic types of mechanical ventilation systems: one that relies on outdoor air brought into the building, one which discharges indoor air, and a balanced system which uses both.
  7. Hybrid ventilation
    This two-mode system combines the best aspects of natural and mechanical ventilation at different times of the day or season of the year to provide a comfortable indoor environment and good air quality.
  8. Refrigeration
    This process involves moving heat from one location to another. This cycle is used in most household refrigerators as well as in many large commercial and industrial refrigeration systems. Basically heat is taken from the space that needs cooling and rejected to the outside environment with the help of electrically driven compressor systems in most cases.
  9. District cooling systems
    Any group of buildings with large cooling needs normally requires a district cooling system. This means the centralized production and distribution of cooling energy. Chilled water is delivered via an underground insulated pipeline to office, industrial and residential buildings to cool the indoor air of the buildings within a ‘district’.
  10. Air Conditioning
    Given that this technology allows the control of air flow and temperature precisely, cooling units will be incorporated into stadiums. However, air conditioning will mainly be used in conjunction with more energy-efficient cooling methods as part of a ‘hybrid’ solution.

 

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Do not use ArmorTech ALT70 fungicide!

June 9, 2015

Professor Bruce Clarke @ Rutgers University provided the pdf document at the link below about a stop sale notice for a fungicide called ALT70. This is a generic version of fosetyl-Al which has been associated recently with extensive turf loss on a number of golf courses in the Mid-Atlantic and New England Regions. Link to message from UTA: http://tinyurl.com/o2okq5p; for more on this issue from John Kaminski at Penn State, click here

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Controlling nutsedge

June 9, 2015

Much of the nutsedge that has begun to emerge is yellow nutsedge. It often comes to a location from sod or imported soil. It has historically been a challenge in wet areas, as the plant produces nutlets that lie dormant in the soil and then germinate following a rain event. The growth and success of yellow nutsedge is due to its ability to colonize an area, tolerate mowing, and reproduce via seed and underground nutlets. Successful control programs include avoiding the use of contaminated soil and a well timed application of Halosulfuron (Sedgehammer) applied with the appropriate crop oil for necessary absorption. The best timing for control of above AND below ground plant parts is in the next few weeks around the summer solstice when plants begin to translocate sugars for storage in the nutlets. This will burn back the existing foliage and translocate the herbicide to the nutlets for both post and preemergence control. Be sure the nutsedge is not under moisture stress when making the application. Be sure to read and follow all label directions, including those associated with use of crop oil concentrate. Warm weather increases the potential for injury to desirable cool season turf that might also be under moisture stress.-from Dr. Frank Rossi’s blog, shortCUTTS

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MA selectmen approve creation of advisory committee for athletic fields

June 9, 2015

The Board of Selectmen in Madison, MA voted to approve an ordinance to establish a Town Fields Advisory Committee, which the Beach and Recreation Commission felt was long overdue. Initially, the committee would be comprised of presidents of the Madison sport leagues, including Little League, youth soccer, youth football, youth lacrosse, youth baseball and adult softball, according to the ordinance.

Read all about it here

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Robert Heggie is 2015 Sports Turf Manager of the Year

June 9, 2015

Sports Turf Canada is pleased to announce that Robert Heggie is the 2015 Sports Turf Manager of the Year. The Sports Turf Manager of the Year award is a prestigious honour that recognizes an individual’s professional ability and contribution to the Canadian sports turf industry and shows appreciation for his or her proactive and progressive efforts within the profession.

Mr. Heggie is Head Groundskeeper at BMO Stadium and KIA Training Ground Academy, home to Major League Soccer’s Toronto Football Club. But it is not his knowledge and expertise in managing fields for the sport’s highest level of play that sees him recognized with this honour. “The resounding thread that runs through Robert’s nomination and accompanying letters of support is his continuing effort to inspire and mentor those students who may aspire to become sports turf managers,” explained association president Tennessee Propedo. “Robert is a frequent guest speaker for students at the University of Guelph, participates in the student-run Turfgrass Symposium, and is always willing to host tours of the Toronto FC stadium field and practice facility.”

By sponsoring this award, the Guelph Turfgrass Institute assists in the recognition of sports turf managers who exemplify vision and leadership in the sports turf industry. “The GTI is honoured to partner with Sports Turf Canada in this award that helps to promote and recognize outstanding sports turf managers in Canada,” added GTI director Rob Witherspoon. “Robert is a proud alumnus of the Turfgrass Management and Horticulture diploma programs at the University of Guelph who encourages students to consider sports turf as a career option and regularly invites both interns and graduates to work with the club’s grounds crew.” Said Gregory Patterson, one such graduate, “I wish that Robert and BMO Field were around when I was attending university; I feel I would have made the move from golf courses to sports turf much sooner.”

The nomination deadline for the 2016 Sports Turf Manager of the Year is January 15, 2016. Visit www.sportsturfcanada.com for eligibility, criteria and the nomination form.

About Sports Turf Canada

Sports Turf Canada was established in 1987 when after a brain storming session at the University of Guelph a broad segment of the turf industry endorsed its need. Of particular concern at that meeting was the need to minimize and avoid injury to participants using athletic fields where they relate to sports turf. Over a quarter-century later Sports Turf Canada continues to promote better, safer sports turf through innovation, education and professional programs.

 

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Diamond Pro has new website and mobile app

June 5, 2015

Diamond Pro has introduced their newly redesigned website and mobile app. “While we have changed the look and feel of our website to make it more user friendly, much of the previous information our customers enjoyed is still available on the new site along with new information. Please send us your feedback, and let us know how we can continue to help serve and provide you with the most recent information and education in the industry!” said an announcement.

The Diamond Pro Mobile App is uniquely laid out, providing instant groundskeeping product information, recommended field dimensions and your nearest Diamond Pro distributor. It also contains a product “How much do I need” calculator. When you’re on the go, you can use the calculator to determine just how much product you will need for your athletic fields.

“We appreciate your business and loyalty to Diamond Pro throughout the years, and hope you will share this information with everyone! Remember to follow or contact us on Facebook and Twitter. Enjoy the rest of 2015, and please call us if you need any assistance with your fields!”

www.diamondpro.com

 

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John Marman named VP of sales and marketing for West Coast Turf

June 5, 2015

John Marman has been named Vice President of Sales and Marketing, and Anthony Pulizzano selected as the Southern California Sales Representative for West Coast Turf (WCT).

Marman has been with WCT for nearly 20 years, and originally started working hands on in the field shortly after graduating from UC Riverside with a degree in environmental sciences. He spent several years with WCT’s Nevada operation in Las Vegas, and until recently held the company’s regional sales manager position. Marman replaces WCT’s recently retired Vice President, Jeff Cole.

“We chose John for this position for several reasons. Obviously he had the experience with the company.   He has worked for us in several capacities, so he has a real understanding of the business and a grasp on what exactly it is that our customer needs. With his education in environmental sciences, he is always current on the cutting edge new water saving grasses, and can be the ‘go-to’ guy for our clients when it comes to that technology. He has good longstanding relationships in the industry, and is well liked by his peers. He was also mentored early on by one of the best in the business (the late Barry Mohon). We are excited to have John heading up our sales and marketing division. We know he will continue to be a leader,” said WCT’s President John Foster.

Pulizzano was a natural pick for WCT’s Southern California sales representative position. He is a familiar face at WCT, as he was formerly and inside customer service representative and dispatcher at their Scottsdale, Arizona farm. Pulizzano also was a groundskeeper for the San Francisco Giants and Arizona Diamondbacks, as well as a groundskeeper at University of California Berkley, and for the City of San Francisco Unified School District. Most recently he worked for the Oakland Athletics ground crew under Clay Wood.

“Anthony will handle all of our Southern California sports turf, golf course, and commercial accounts (along with Jim Davis in the Desert, and Tom Stafford in the Los Angeles area). His knowledge of turfgrass will also benefit our retail customers. He’ll also be out on the road helping to educate our customers about our water saving drought tolerant grasses, and introducing the native grasses which are extremely water friendly. West Coast Turf has always been water conscious with our hybrid bermudas, and has led the way on finding alternative water saving turfgrasses. Anthony has an understanding of these grasses, and will be able to get the word out that there are ways to have a lawn or field and be water savvy. He is a welcome addition back to our West Coast Turf family,” Foster said.

 

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