Full TGIF Record # 269943
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Web URL(s):https://archive.lib.msu.edu/tic/its/articles/1974sup34a.pdf
    Last checked: 03/15/2016
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Publication Type:
Content Type:Abstract or summary only
Author(s):Duble, Richard L.
Author Affiliation:Texas A&M University
Title:Thatch decomposition in bermudagrass turf
Section:Turfgrass culture
Other records with the "Turfgrass culture" Section
Meeting Info.:Blacksburg, Virginia: June 19-21, 1973
Source:Abstracts of Papers Presented at the Second International Turfgrass Research Conference. 1973, p. 34.
# of Pages:1
Publishing Information:Blacksburg, Virginia: [International Turfgrass Society]
Keywords:TIC Keywords: Comparisons; Cultural methods; Cynodon; Evaluations; Maintenance programs; Nitrogen fertilization; Thatch accumulation; Thatch decomposition
Abstract/Contents:"The accumulation of undecomposed organic residues on the soil surface (thatch) is a major problem associated with intensified bermudagrass management. Cultural practices including vertical mowing, aerifying and top-dressing must be a regular part of the maintenance program to control thatch. Improved grass varieties, excessive fertilization and extensive use of plant protectants all may add to this problem. To investigate the problem of thatch decomposition, microbial counts, respiration measurements and chemical analyses were conducted in the laboratory. Respiration measurements were made by collecting and measuring C02 evolved from plant material incubated with soil in a controlled environment chamber. Also, microscopic examination of plant residues and associated microorganisms was conducted to observe the structural changes during decomposition. Microbial counts demonstrated significant differences between populations of fungi and bacteria attacking leaves, stems and roots. The fungi were most active in decomposing stem tissue; whereas, the bacteria were most prevalent on leaf tissue. The rate of decomposition of leaf tissue was not significantly different from that of stem tissue but both were decomposed faster than roots. The cellulose fraction of the plant material was decomposed rapidly; whereas, the lignin fraction was decomposed slowly. The lignin content of the plant material ranged from 6 to 10% initially, but increased to 20 to 30% in the thatch. Microscopic examination of the thatch showed that the cellular content of the plant was rapidly broken down by fungi and bacteria, and the cell-wall content accumulated in the thatch. Nitrogen fertilization significantly influenced thatch accumulation. Fertilization with soluble nitrogen sources resulted in greater thatch accumulation that with organic nitrogen sources. This was attributed to a faster rate of growth of the grass rather than an increase in microbial activity with organic sources. Fungicides temporarily retarded microbial activity but had little influence on thatch accumulation. The investigation suggested that management does influence thatch accumulation, but does not eliminate the need for cultural control practices. Bermudagrass varieties for putting green turf all have a high requirement for nitrogen fertilization which contributes to thatch accumulation. But, the use of slow-release organic nitrogen sources reduces the rate of thatch accumulation."
Note:This item is an abstract only!
ASA/CSSA/SSSA Citation (Crop Science-Like - may be incomplete):
Duble, R. L. 1973. Thatch decomposition in bermudagrass turf. Int. Turfgrass Soc. Annexe - Tech. Pap. p. 34.
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    Last checked: 03/15/2016
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