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Updates from...Chile?

As I mentioned last week, every four years turfgrass scientists from around the world meet to relay the latest information and research. This year's meeting happens to be located in Santiago, Chile. Before you start complaining about how great it must be to take a "vacation" for work, just know that it is winter here in Chile and the group will be spending most of their time in dark rooms listening to people talk excitedly about turf (does that sound like a vacation?). Having said that, you can bet that I will be enjoying some Chilean wine and decent food while I am hear.

OK, as for the diseases. One of the nice things about being down here with the other pathologists is that I have had the opportunity to ask them what is going on with their regions. I asked a few people from various universities "Is there anything going on in your area that you want to share?" Below are their answers...

John Inguagiato, Ph.D. (University of Connecticut): After a temporary dropoff of dollar spot, the disease has regained momentum and is starting to cause significant damage again. Take-all has been unusually devastating this year due to the cool, wet weather. To help promote recovery John recommends frequent irrigation to the compromised root system. Finally, brown patch has started picking up in the last 10 days and will probably continue due to the expected hot and humid conditions. On a future note, John mentioned that the date of the second UConn Field Day for 2010 will be announced shortly...stay tuned.

Me, (Penn State): From my end, I have seen quite a bit of dollar spot finally taking off in the past week. Type II fairy ring (green rings) has been popping up all over the region as well, but due to the amount of rain the rings are not really developing into Type I (dead circles). Most golf courses have had preventive sprays out for brown patch, but much thought and agonizing has gone into deciding whether applying a Pythium fungicide is necessary. On one hand, we are in late July when the disease is prime for causing trouble. On the other hand, the weather has been anything but typical this year and temperatures have been mild and rain plentiful (at least for most areas). My advice would be to keep an eye on the weather and if night time temperatures look like they are going to increase above 65F in conjunction with extended leaf or thatch wetness (~12 or more hours) then preventive applications should be applied. Pay close attention to watch your "hotspots", since your environmental data is not likely being collected in your courses hottest and most humid locations.

Karl Danneberger (THE Ohio State University): "No, Not really."

Tom Hsiang (University of Guelph, Canada): "I will get back to you."

From the responses above, I guess you could say that from the turf group, blogging is really a goal/hobby of the "younger scientists" (Sorry Tom and Karl, just had to get that jab in there!). That's it from Chile, but keep an eye out for those in the group reporting from the American Phytopathological Society meetings in Portland next week. For me, one "vacation" is enough and I will be heading back to PSU and then off to Pittsburgh and Buffalo for my final rounds of Penn State 2-Year Intern visits!

One response to “Updates from...Chile?”

Teresa Carson said...

I am so jealous. Even if it's cold, I wish I could be in Chile for the meetings. I look forward to your posts. BTW, Penn State was just named the No. 1 party school in the country!

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