Buffalograss [Buchloe dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.] use as a turf in the northern USA is limited to a certain extent by its extended winter dormancy. A mixture of buffalograss with cool-season turfgrasses might extend the turf's green appearance and enhance quality. Research was conducted to determine the effects of overseeding fine-leaved fescue (Festuca spp.) in buffalograss turf on turfgrass color and quality and the effects of species, seeding rate and date, and core cultivation on fine-leaved fescue establishment in buffalograss turf. Hard fescue (F. longifolia Thuill.), blue fescue (F. ovina L. var. glauca Lam.), and Chewings fescue (F. rubra L. ssp. commutata Gaud.); seeding rates (10, 20, and 30 g m-2); seeding dates (fall, spring, or split fall-spring); and core cultivation (single or double pass) were evaluated for species composition, turfgrass quality, color, and green cover at the John Seaton Anderson Turfgrass Research Facility located near Mead, NE. Buffalograss turf overseeded with blue fescue in fall had the highest turfgrass quality, color, and green cover ratings. Fall overseeding resulted in the highest shoot density values. Spring overseedings were below acceptable levels. Botanical composition of the mixtures overseeded in fall reached 75 to 80% fescue and 20 to 25% buffalograss after 2 yr. Seeding rate effect was linear with each increment between 10 g m-2 and 30 g m-2 increasing fine-leaved fescue shoot density, turfgrass quality, color, and green cover. Blue fescue-buffalograss mixtures overseeded in the fall exhibited 80% green cover when buffalograss was dormant. Turfgrass green cover in the mixture was extended by 2 months when compared to buffalograss monostands growing in areas adjacent to the study. The results of this study support the use of fine-leaved fescue and buffalograss mixtures to extend turfgrass green appearance and enhance quality.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agronomy and Crop Science