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Big Bucks, No Whammy

Dang, I had several photos that I wanted to include today, and a graph showing dollar spot progress in one of my trials, but sadly my computer (with all my photos, etc) is not working at all, and the IT guy is not around. I'm camped out at another computer right now, in the diagnostic lab.

The thing is, for the past two days I've been joking with friends about Whammies. Remember that silly game show with the Whammies? I used to watch it when home sick from school, or on summer break. Big bucks, big bucks, no Whammy. Well, this afternoon the Whammy didn't steal my money, but he did wreck my laptop, and that's even worse.


There is a ton of dollar spot out there. At our research center we have dollar spot in the greens, fairways, and in the perennial ryegrass lawn/rough height areas. This morning was very dewy and there was some dollar spot mycelium in the rye. I even had a sample this week of dollar spot from a bermudagrass home lawn. Late August into September is when we get severe dollar spot, sometimes taking grass out down to the ground on putting greens.

I was surprised to see a little bit of faint brown patch on the putting green at our research facility this morning. In fact, I wasn't even the one to notice it first--my colleague Dr. Jack Fry spotted it before I did. It has been cool lately, but the last couple of days have been warmer and very humid, so I guess it was not so surprising after all.

Other than these couple of diseases the weather conditions have been fantastic lately for cool-season turf. It's the last Friday in August, and there is always a sigh of relief when turning the calendar over to September. The summer stress is over. As a superintendent once told me (during a particularly hot/stressful summer), "God grows the grass 9 months of the year, then turns it over to us for June, July, and August."

I thought I'd also mention that in landscape/ornamentals there has been a rush of tree and shrub samples in the past week. Just like turf most of the time, most tree samples are NOT diseases--it is an environmental stress issue. But there have been a ton of actual diseases lately. Culprits have included:bacterial leaf spot in English Ivy; bacterial leaf spot in hydrangea; septoria leaf spot in dogwood; cercospora leaf spot in lilac; cylindrosporium leaf spot on spirea; mycosphaerella leaf spot on ash. We don't see too many bacterial leaf spots in Kansas. Fungal leaf spots require wet weather, but bacterial leaf spots require even more. This year was very wet in many locations, wet enough to trigger bacteria. That is darn wet.

That's it. I hope the Whammy doesn't get you, or your turf.

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