Date of Completion

9-11-2017

Embargo Period

3-10-2018

Keywords

turfgrass, pesticide-free, organic, fertilizer, extension, pesticide ban

Major Advisor

Jason Henderson

Associate Advisor

Karl Guillard

Associate Advisor

Thomas Morris

Associate Advisor

Victoria Wallace

Field of Study

Plant Science

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access

Abstract

Pesticide and fertilizer usage throughout the United States is coming under increased scrutiny from both the public and scientific communities due to potential negative environmental impacts and perceived health concerns. The three studies presented here focus on evaluating different management plans for home lawns and athletic fields, while also providing improved dissemination of information to athletic field managers. Results of the athletic field and home lawn management plan study indicate that pesticide treatments outperformed non-pesticide treatments across most measures. However, if a non-pesticide plan is desired then the high input organic or high input pesticide-free plan would be preferred over the low input organic or low input pesticide-free plan. Results for the fertility study indicate that a fertilization rate of as low as 5 g N m-2 provided statistically equivalent results across some color/quality measures, though exact rate would be highly dependent on the turfgrass manager’s goal and what time of year a high quality, dark green turfgrass was desired. Finally, the information dissemination study indicated that the large group setting performed better than the small group setting, most likely due to the structure of the small group meeting. Small group attendees had more flexibility to discuss issues that affected them directly. There was less flexibility for large group attendees to deviate outside the main subject matter being presented. However, the value of the small group meeting should not be discounted when specific information is needed. Large group meeting would be preferred when more general information is need by managers.

Available for download on Saturday, March 10, 2018

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