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2012 Iowa Turfgrass Conference & Tradeshow Recap

January 31, 2012

The 78th Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Tradeshow was held January 17-19 at the Downtown Des Moines Marriott Hotel. This annual event is solely dedicated to the turfgrass industry and brings together educators, industry partners, and professional turfgrass managers. In total, attendees were able to network with over 50 vendors and participate in countless educational seminars while networking with colleagues and catching up with friends.

This event continues to be a success and provide attendees with tips or techniques they can take back to their facility to improve their operation. Below are pictures from the 3 day event. Enjoy!

Marcus Jones
Assistant Scientist
Iowa State University


Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Tradeshow Recap

January 24, 2011

The 77th Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Tradeshow took place last week. Conference season is always a great time to enjoy and reconnect with friends and colleagues and become energized for another growing season. This year’s keynote speaker Charles Marshallprovided the humor and motivation during his Wednesday morning presentation. Below is a snippet of some of Charles’ work.

If you receive articles via e-mail subscription, you will need to visit the blog homepage to view the video and presentation.

Personally, I always enjoy listening to the seminars and watching the presenters. This allows me to brush up on information I may already be familiar with while also thinking about new ways of doing things. The presentation that comes to mind as I type this was by Dr. Brian Horgan from the University of Minnesota. He presented some of his latest research relating to the environmental and economic considerations relating to nitrogen fertilization and soil testing. Traditionally, late fall fertilization has been a popular practice and is thought to stimulate root growth and provide early spring green up. So far Brian’s work is suggesting that late fall fertilization may not be the best time to apply fertilizer from an economic or environmental standpoint. Their work is still ongoing so stay tuned for updates on this matter in the future.

I also had the opportunity to present at the conference. As many of you read in an earlier post, Brett Hetland, CGCS Brooks National Golf Club, and I presented about how to plan and implement integrated pest management. Hopefully, the information we presented will encourage and provide you with the necessary tools to start an IPM program at your facility if you have the desire. As we mentioned during our presentation, golf courses can be successfully blended with the natural environment to preserve natural habitat while providing a community asset. Those of you in the turfgrass industry work directly with nature on a daily basis and you are in a unique position to make a positive impact and IPM can serve as a catalyst for this action. In case you couldn’t make it our presentation can be seen below (without the bravado and wit that Brett and I presented with though). 

How to plan & implement ipm at your

View more presentations from iaturfblog.

I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention two Iowa GCSA members that received impressive honors. Rick Tegtmeier, CGCS Des Moines Golf and Country Club, received the second annual Environmental Stewardship Award, and it was announced that Doug Snook, CGCS Waverly Golf Course will be inducted into the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame. There will be more coverage on these awards later in the week.


Conference Season is Here!

December 13, 2010

This article comes to us from Ty McClellan, USGA Green Section Record Mid-Continent Region Agronomist.

Frost has arrived, evoking a collective sigh of relief from turf managers and cool-season turfgrasses alike. For most, cool weather (and even snowfall) has been but a dream since early July when Mother Nature began punishing cool-season turfgrasses throughout the Mid-Continent Region, and much of the country for that matter.

As a grueling year comes to a close, conference season moves into full swing and all indications are that meetings will be well attended. Recently, the Central Illinois GCSA enjoyed an audience larger than in recent years at their Annual Education Seminar. The demands brought forth by Mother Nature this summer didn’t allow superintendents much, if any, time away from the golf course. Poor attendance at golf course superintendent chapter meetings resulted, but this should change now with the opportunity to gather for education and camaraderie at a time of year when golf courses are on the mend.

Appropriately, many of the conferences this winter will feature education targeted towards summer survival strategies for cool-season turfgrasses. Given the recent environmental challenges, combined with persisting economic limitations, it would be well worth inviting a course official to attend a conference with you.

To learn more about conferences in your area, contact your local superintendent association or USGA Green Section office. Upcoming conferences for the upper Mid-Continent Region are as follows:

2011 Conferences

January 10-12
Nebraska Green Expo
Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs, IA

January 18-20
Iowa Turfgrass Conference & Trade Show
Polk County Convention Complex & Marriott Hotel, Des Moines, IA

February 7-11
GCSAA Education Conference & Golf Industry Show
USGA Green Section Education Program: “Lessons Learned Come in All Forms”—Feb. 11, 10:00 am - Noon
Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, FL
Visit and

February 22-23
Gateway Green Industry Conference & Trade Show
Gateway Convention Center, Collinsville, Illinois

If you would like more information about a Turf Advisory Service visit, contact either of the Mid-Continent regional offices: Ty McClellan at or (630) 340-5853 or Bud White at or (972) 662-1138.


Midwest Turfgrass Conference Schedule

November 15, 2013

It is just about time to close the books on the 2013 season. Most turf managers have blown out irrigation systems and started thinking towards preventative snow mold applications and equipment maintenance.With colder weather moving in (-1 wind chill Monday night) and snow-flakes flying on/off the last few weeks it is time to find a nice warm spot and catch up on what has transpired this season. In addition, it is time to start looking towards conference season. I have provided a quick chronological list of the midwest turf conferences over the next few months. I look forward to seeing you there!

Missouri Green Industry Conference
December 5, 2013
St. Charles Convention Center
St. Charles, Missouri


Common Ground Conference (Heartland Green Industry Expo)
December 16-17, 2013
Overland Park Convention Center
Overland Park, Kansas


Nebraska Turf Conference
January 7-9, 2014
LaVista Conferencer Center
LaVista, Nebraska


Illinois Turf Conference
January 7-8, 2014
McDonald's Campus
OakBrook, Illinois


MNLA / MTGF Northern Green Expo
January 8-10, 2014
Minneapolis Convention Center
Minneapolis, Minnesota


Wisconsin Turfgrass Research Day
January 14, 2014
Pyle Center
Madison, Wisconsin


STMA Annual Conference and Exhibition
January 21-24, 2014
Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center
San Antonio, Texas


80th Annual Iowa Turfgrass Conference & Trade Show
January 28-30, 2014
Downtown Marriott Hotel
Des Moines, Iowa
Sponsored by ITI, Iowa GCSA, ISTMA, IPLCA


GCSAA Education Conference & Golf Industry Show
February 1-6, 2014
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando, Florida


IPM Sneak Preview and Survey

January 10, 2011

The annual Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Trade Show is next week. On Wednesday of conference week Brett Hetland, CGCS Brooks National Golf Club, and I will be presenting about integrated pest management (IPM).

IPM is a management strategy that is gaining in popularity and is becoming more widely accepted and practiced at many facilities. As part of our presentation, I am interested in hearing our reader’s thoughts on IPM. I have set up a 1-question survey to accomplish this and the question is located below. The survey is completely anonymous and you can participate by responding to the poll located in the upper right hand corner of the blog. Please let us know your thoughts.

IPM Survey
Do you practice IPM and if not, what is the main reason why?

  1. I'm currently using IPM.
  2. I'm unsure about what IPM is.
  3. I'm unsure how to get started with an IPM program.
  4. An IPM program doesn't fit into our management strategy.
  5. I think our budget would not support an IPM program.
  6. Our current staffing levels don't support an IPM program.

Select your answer by using the poll in the upper right hand corner of the blog.

So why did we choose to discuss this topic? Well, the “Green” movement has been hard to escape. It seems that you notice it everywhere you turn and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. As an example consider the use of the word “Green”. Each year Lake Superior State University publishes a list of the most used and abused words and phrases that they feel should be banished from the English language. In 2009 “Green” and “Going-green” received the most nominations.

In case you’re interested the 2010 list includes: shovel-ready, transparency, czar, tweet, app, “friend” as a verb, teachable moment, in these economic times, stimulus, toxic assets, too big to fail, bromance, chillaxin, and the use of Obama-as a prefix… Obamanomics, Obamanation, Obamafication, Obamacare, Obamalicious, Obamaland, and Obamanough.

In our presentation we will discuss what IPM is and how it applies to turfgrass management. We will highlight and walk you through the new IPM Planning Guide developed by the Environmental institute for Golf. This guide can be used as a resource to development and implement IPM at your facility. Brett will also provide specific examples of practices IPM practices that he uses on his golf course.

We hope to see you at conference next week!



Still Time to Register for the 2012 Iowa Turfgrass Conference & Trade Show

January 9, 2012

There is still time left to register for the 78th annual Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Trade Show. The event will take place January 17-19 at the Downtown Des Moines Marriott Hotel. Information about the conference, exhibitor information, and registration forms can be found at

Conference is a great way to network with peers and take advantage of educational opportunities. Whether you are just brushing up on fundamentals or learning about the newest trends and ideas relating to turfgrass science, there is something for everyone. A number of speakers from Iowa State University will be presenting in addition to a number of invited presenters including:

Zac Reicher, University of Nebraska
Ty McClellan, United States Golf Association
Derek Settle, Chicago District Golf Association
Kevin Norby, Herfort & Norby Golf Architects
Judd Duininck, Duininck Golf
Eric Hansen, The Preserve at Rathbun Lake
Allen Johnson, CSFM, Green Bay Packers
Amy Fouty, CSFM, Michigan State University
Jeremy Buhl, PBI/Gordon
Mark Howieson, Becker Underwood
Daniel Krohn, Becker Underwood
Troy McQuillen, Kirkwood Community College
Fred Whitford, Purdue University
Kevin Tracy, ASI Watercare
John Newton, CGCS, Veenker Memorial Golf Course
Jason Koester, CGCS, Grinnell College
Brad Thedens, City of Sioux Falls
Neric Smith, Indian Hills Community College
Steve Bush, CSFM, Bush Sports Turf

Preview the full conference program by clicking here. Complete conference information can be found at

Marcus Jones
Assistant Scientist
Iowa State University



July 23, 2013

Dan Strey and myself spent last week in Beijing China for the 12th International Turfgrass Research conference.  It was an excellent meeting, with more than 300 people in attendance.  As you can see, we had a beautiful, clear day at the Great Wall.  

Great Wall of China

It was a little hazy for the  Forbidden City.

Iowa State was well represented with 6 papers that are listed below.  Full text of these will be up on the Turfgrass Information Service soon.  I can also send full text to anyone who would like them.

  • Core Aeration Programs and Sand Topdressing Improve Creeping Bentgrass Fairways  ~Matthew T. Klingenberg, Deying Li, Nick E. Christians* and Christopher J. Blume
  • Influence of an amino acid complex on the growth of Agrostis stolonifera L. cv. Penncross  ~Quincy D. Law*, Marcus A. Jones, Aaron J. Patton, and Nick E. Christians
  • Basic Cation Saturation Ratio Theory Applied to Sand-Based Putting Greens  ~R.A. St. John* and N.E. Christians




October 25, 2012

The American Society of Agronomy meetings were in Cincinnati this week and Zach Simons, one of our graduate students, set up a tour of the Paul Brown Stadium and practice facility with some of the other turf people from Tennessee and Georgia.  Darian Daly, the head sports turf manager gave us the tour.    It is a very impressive site.  The main field in the stadium  is artificial turf with rubber infill.  The practice fields were bermudagrass that had been overseeded recently with perennial ryegrass.  Thanks to Darian for a great tour.  Hopefully we can get an ISU intern there at some time in the future.

Darian Daly is on the right with the black jacket and cap.  Zach Simons is in the green shirt.

This is the practice fields next to the stadium.  The bermuda is still not completely dormant and the overseeded ryegrass is just beginning to emerge.