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This article in CS

  1. Vol. 41 No. 3, p. 797-805
    Received: Mar 10, 2000

    * Corresponding author(s): cbigelow@cropserv1.cropsci.ncsu.edu
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Creeping Bentgrass Response to Inorganic Soil Amendments and Mechanically Induced Subsurface Drainage and Aeration

  1. Cale A. Bigelow *a,
  2. Daniel C. Bowmana,
  3. D.Keith Casselb and
  4. Thomas W. Ruftya
  1. a Dep. of Crop Science, North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC 27695-7620
    b Dep of Soil Science North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC 27695-7619


Creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera var. palustris Huds. Farw.) golf greens often decline under the hot, humid summer conditions of the southeastern USA. Factors associated with this decline may be poor soil aeration, excessive soil wetness, high temperatures, and turfgrass diseases. A field study evaluated a mechanical forced air system for its ability to modify the soil water content and oxygen (O2) status of newly constructed sand-based rootzones, and its effects on turfgrass quality (TQ) and seasonal bentgrass rooting. Three drainage situations were studied: gravity drainage (control treatment) and gravity drainage supplemented by two mechanically induced drainage treatments, water evacuation (WE) or WE followed by air-injection (AI). In addition, the effects of peat moss and several inorganic soil amendments on bentgrass establishment and growth were studied. Compared with gravity drainage, WE significantly decreased water contents (0.01–0.05 m3 m−3) averaged across the 0- to 27-cm depth, with the greatest change occurring near the bottom of the rooting media. Seasonal fluctuations in soil O2 and CO2 concentrations were observed, but O2 remained high, 0.19 m3 m−3, and CO2 was low, <0.01 m3 m−3, regardless of drainage treatment. Drainage treatments had no effect on TQ or root mass density (RMD). However, both TQ and RMD increased from 1998 to 1999, possibly becaue of greater turfgrass density. Amendments had significant effects on establishment and TQ in the following order: peat moss > Ecolite = Profile > Greenschoice ≥ unamended sand. This response was probably due to improved water and nutrient retention of the amended rootzones. Although the forced air–vacuum technology provided little benefit in these newly constructed greens, it may be useful on mature putting greens that suffer from poor soil aeration or drainage.

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Copyright © 2001. Crop Science Society of AmericaPublished in Crop Sci.41:797–805.