Removal of perennial ryegrass from overseeded bermudagrass using cultural methods

Brian P. Horgan, Fred H. Yelverton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Turfgrass managers in the southeastern United States often overseed 'Tifway' bermudagrass [Cynodon transvaalensis Burtt-Davey C. dactylon (L.) Pers.] with perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) to provide a dense green turf during winter months. Although overseeding provides benefits, the spring transition from perennial ryegrass to bermudagrass can be troublesome and inconsistent. Perennial ryegrass may survive longer into the spring than is desired due to cool, wet conditions. The following experiment evaluated cultural methods for removal of perennial ryegrass from overseeded bermudagrass in the spring and early summer. The experiment was conducted at the North Carolina State University Turfgrass Field Center in Raleigh in the 1995 to 1996 and 1996 to 1997 growing seasons. Monocultures of 'Gator' and 'Derby Supreme' perennial ryegrass were overseeded into an established Tifway bermudagrass turf managed at golf course fairway conditions. It was hypothesized that various cultural treatments in the spring and summer could promote bermudagrass and/ or discourage perennial ryegrass, and that the perennial ryegrass transition would differ depending on heat tolerance of the selected overseeding monocultures. The cultural treatments were biweekly vertical mowing, scalping, core cultivation, and vertical mowing/scalping, or two application timings of NH4NO3. Chemical removal of perennial yegrass using pronamide [3,5-dichloro-N-(1,1-dimethyl-2-propynyl)-benzamide] was included as a check treatment because it is commonly used to promote transition. Bermudagrass shoot density was consistently higher in nonoverseeded plots, illustrating perennial ryegrass competition. Cultural treatments affected perennial ryegrass cover during the spring and early summer but did not hasten its ultimate disappearance. Early or late applied NH4NO3 enhanced bermudagrass shoot density in both years. In contrast, plots receiving core cultivation had lower bermudagrass shoot density at the end of the transition period than the nontreated plots. Pronamide did hasten transition through 7 and 13 wk after initial treatment for 1996 and 1997, respectively. Regression analysis between natural perennial ryegrass disappearance over both years and air temperature or relative humidity indicates a significant association. This implies that cultural treatments alone may not consistently enhance natural transition of perennial ryegrass to bermudagrass.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-126
Number of pages9
JournalCrop Science
Volume41
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 22 2001

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