2020 MTGF CLIPPINGS SPRING SUMMER ISSUE

Page 1

MTGF Clippings OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE MINNESOTA TURF AND GROUNDS FOUNDATION SPRING / SUMMER 2020 VOL. 28, NO. 1

The mission of the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation is to promote the green industry in Minnesota through support of research, education and outreach at the University of Minnesota and elsewhere.


PRESIDENT’S REPORT The Business of the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Officers President Matt Cavanaugh Rush Creek GC, MGCSA

By MATT CAVANAUGH President Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation

Vice President Jamie Bezanson Highland GC, MGCSA Treasurer Steve Balfany Balfany Farms, MTA Secretary/Treasurer Sam Bauer Bauer Turf, MPSTMA Ex-Officio Manuel Jordán Heritage Shade Tree Consultants, MSA Directors MASMS Tom Redmann Tom Redmann Consulting MASMS Tracy Closson Northfield Schools MAC Dave Kemp The Catholic Cemeteries MAC Dominic Pierre Union Cemeteries MGCSA Michael Sonnek Royal Golf Club MPSTMA Paul Griffin City of Woodbury MSA Kent Honl Rainbow Treecare MTA Bryan Lawrence Rocket Turf & Nursery MTSC Brent Benike Northern Excellence Seed MTSC Richard Magnusson Magnusson Farms Vendor Representative Jim O’Neill EcoWorks Supply Vendor Representative Andy Keating Twin City Seed Company UM Representative Chad Giblin University of Minnesota UM Representative Dr. Eric Watkins University of Minnesota * * * * Executive Director Jeff Turtinen 763-703-4983 jeff.turtinen@mtgf.org P. O. Box 617 Wayzata, MN 55391

I’m sitting here directing my kids to finish doing the dinner dishes and then to pick up the disaster they have made in the living room since they finished up school for the day. That is pretty much the same, old, nightly routine at the Cavanaugh household. This got me thinking about how little has changed since the last Clippings publication in October. Yep, noting at all in terms of the MTGF or the world in general. So, it was nice writing to you all and I’ll keep you posted on any changes… Wait a minute, how could I forget the most obvious which are some of the changes at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Chase Straw accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Turfgrass Management and Physiology at Texas A&M University. During his time at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Straw worked on several projects that revolved around mapping protocols for collecting data on golf courses and sports fields. Dr. Dan Sandor accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Turfgrass Science at Virginia Tech University. Dr. Sandor’s work in Minnesota focused on the Metropolitan Council project relating to lawn water conservation. Dr. Jon Trappe has also moved on with the acceptance of the role as Technical Agronomist at Midwestern BioAg. Dr. Trappe worked on many projects that included MnDOT roadside turf and allelopathy of fine fescues. Gary Johnson, Extension Professor with the Department of Forest Resources at the University of Minnesota has also recently announced his retirement for later this summer. We are excited for all of these individuals and it truly shows how successful the programs are at the University of Minnesota as the individuals move on to other roles within the industry and life. Congratulations to all. Holy cow, how could I forget about some more huge changes to our industry. There have been some additions at the University of Minnesota. Gary Deters has joined as the new Research Field Facility Manager with the Turfgrass Science team. Gary joins with a great background in turf and serving most recently as Golf Course Superintendent at St. Cloud Country Club for the past six years. Gary is also a graduate of the University of Minnesota with a major in Environmental Horticulture with an emphasis in Turfgrass Management. (See Page 13). Shane Evans also has joined the Turfgrass Science team as the new Lawn Water Conservation Educator. Shane comes to Minnesota from Utah State University where he completed his Master’s project which focused on smart irrigation controllers in residential landscapes. Also of note, the interview process for the Turfgrass Extension Educator position Shane Evans has been completed, but there is still no word on who the individual is during the time of this publication. Stay tuned as this individual will be announced soon. How could I fail to mention something so obvious that has and will impact every individual reading this. The MTGF has donated an additional $100,000 to the Departments of Forest Resources and Plant Pathology (key individuals include Chad Giblin, Ben Held and Ryan Murphy) and also to the Turfgrass Science Research Program at the University of Minnesota (key individuals include Dr. Eric Watkins, Andy Hollman and Gary Deters). Each team has received $50,000. The MTGF would like to thank each program for their continued work and accomplishments in and for the industry. I should also address something that has been on everyone’s mind. Will the MTGF Field Day still be happening on Thursday, August 13th? Stay tuned for an announcement about this. One small, almost minuscule, maybe not worth talking about, but has been pretty life changing…I turned 40 in April and I’m not really sure what to do. Please send your suggestions for how to deal with life in your 40s when you don’t even know what happened to your 30s. With that, I don’t think there are any other changes to talk about. Sincerely,

www.mtgf.org Matt Cavanaugh President Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation

www.MTGF.org


The Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation, a non-profit organization, is a partnership of seven turf- and grounds-related associations and the University of Minnesota. Members of the following associations are also considered members of the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation. 4 4 4 4

Minnesota Minnesota Minnesota Minnesota

Society of Arboriculture Association of Cemeteries Park & Sports Turf Managers Association Educational Facilities Management Professionals

4 Minnesota Sod Producers 4 Minnesota Turf Seed Council 4 Minnesota Golf Course Superintendents’ Association

MTGF CLIPPINGS - TABLE OF CONTENTS 2

President’s Report: The Business of the MTGF - Matt Cavanaugh

5

Elms for the 21st Century - Malcom Gregory, Chad Giblin

13 14

UM Hires Turf Research Field Facility Manager Youth Engagement in Arboriculture - Jack Faje, Chad Giblin

16

UM Turfgrass Science Program Appreciative of Funding from Variety of Groups and Agencies ABOUT THE COVER: "Mark Stennes takes a moment to enjoy the beautiful canopy of the parent St. Croix American elm in Afton, MN. Mark's tireless dedication to arboriculture introduced this tree to the University of Minnesota 15 years ago which helped launch the University of Minnesota Elm Selection Program. Since then, the program has grown to select, propagate, and screen Minnesota native elms and those from worldwide sources." (See related article on Page 5)

- Dr. Eric Watkins

17

MTGF Donates $100,000 for 2020 Research - Jeff Turtinen

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Elms for the 21st Century By Malcolm Gregory and Chad Giblin Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota

For over one-hundred years, the American elm (Ulmus americana) was a staple of urban forests across the United States. The tree’s stately shape made it a highly desired species for urban and suburban environments, and by the turn of the Nineteenth Century, the American elm had become one of the most popular trees in the country. By that time, the cathedral-like canopy of elm trees shaded a vast number of American streets. Unfortunately, an invasive fungal pathogen from Asia named Dutch elm disease (DED) would decimate this significant component of the United States’ urban forests, and reach the Twin Cities by the 1970’s. To put this decline in perspective, in 1930 there were approximately seventy seven million elm trees in North America. By 1989, this number had plummeted to below twenty million (New York Times, 1989). This colossal loss in urban canopies across the country has prompted nursery growers and urban foresters to find and utilize replacements for the American elm. In the Twin Cities, this concern helped establish a cooperative research project between the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) and the University of Minnesota to assess the various elm varieties that could be integrated into the planting efforts of MPRB. To accomplish this task, a primary objective of the project has been to find as many new elm selections as possible and evaluate their performance and their suitability in the Twin Cities’ northern climate. Since 1999, this project has screened nearly every commercially available variety, and due to an increased demand and nursery availability, these trees are finding their way onto boulevards and right-of-ways throughout Minnesota. Lessons derived from the spread of DED and subsequent collapse of American elm populations across the United States have compelled urban foresters to prioritize diversity in their planting schemes. Elevated levels of diversity among urban canopies can limit the effects that exotic pests and diseases have on tree communities. The joint elm project’s mission of incorporating an array of elm selections into planting efforts for the Twin Cities has bolstered genetic diversity in the urban forest and could aid in delaying the www.MTGF.org

An AccoladeTM elm on Olson Memorial Highway in Minneapolis taken 10 years apart shown in 2007 (left) and 2017 (right).

spread of future diseases and insect infestations. In addition to evaluating elm selections, the project has also focused on tree maintenance and its importance to the health of individual trees. Unlike some tree species, elms require substantial amounts of maintenance to ensure health and long-term continuity. Throughout the first 10 to 15 years of life, most elm varieties will require developmental pruning every two to three years. Maintaining a strong central leader is one of the most important maintenance priorities for urban foresters working with elm trees, especially if a tree is located on a boulevard. Another important aspect of maintenance is limiting the number of weak branch unions, which may be the result of bark beetles feeding on the tree, or inherently poor structure. Inspecting for these weakened physical traits is urgent when dealing with young trees, because the dysfunctional branch attachments are prone to tear out leading to catastrophic failure of the tree. The importance of pruning techniques with respect to elm trees has led the elm project to investigate historical and contemporary methods of tree maintenance, and the effects they may have on health and growth rates. By pairing mod-

ern science and forestry techniques with historical records relating to tree care, the project has been able to amass a variety of new and useful elm management strategies. The following information will outline the physical characteristics, maintenance requirements, and general advantages and disadvantages of a series of elm selections that the University of Minnesota’s Department of Forest Resources have studied and planted throughout the Twin Cities. AccoladeTM AccoladeTM (U. davidiana var. japonica x U. davidiana var. japonica ) is a common disease resistant cultivar selected from a tree planted at the Morton Arboretum in 1924. Although this tree is generally more upright and smaller in stature, it maintains a similar mature vase form to that of the American elm. The AccoladeTM selection has proven to be resilient with respect to climate hardiness and insect resistance in the Twin Cities area. Another advantage of this selection is its high-level of resistance to Dutch elm disease. However, researchers from the University of (Continued on Page 7) SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 5


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Elms for 21st Century (Continued from Page 5) Minnesota have detected a few individuals infected with the pathogen. This discovery demonstrates that even the mostresilient elm selections are not immune to DED. The AccoladeTM selection’s vigorous growth and highly aesthetic form make it a great tree for lawn and street plantings.

Danada CharmTM Danada CharmTM (Ulmus davidiana var. japonica x U. davidiana var. japonica) is another vase-shaped elm selection originating from the Morton Arboretum. Danada CharmTM possesses the fastest growth rate of any elm and requires moderate levels of maintenance. Often overlooked due to lower commercial availability, Danada Charm’sTM exceptional growth rate makes it one of the highest performing selections with respect to both form and condition. CommendationTM CommendationTM (complex hybrid of U. minor, U. pumila, and AccoladeTM) is another highly adaptive and drought resistant selection introduced by the Morton Arboretum. This tree possesses a vigorous growth rate and is generally more oval shaped than other elm selections. CommendationTM is a versatile tree that is well suited to a variety of conditions within an urban forest. Cathedral Cathedral (U. pumila x U. davidiana var. japonica ) is another DED resistant elm selection introduced by the University of Wisconsin, and is named for the cathedral-like arches produced when this tree is planted in tight rows with crown overlap. Furthermore, the classic vase shape of a mature Cathedral makes it one of the most visually appealing selections. This variety was chosen to replace the American elms lost on Northrop Mall at the University of Minnesota to celebrate the University of Minnesota’s Sesquicentennial in 2001. When compared to other selections, this elm requires more maintenance due to its tendency of developing weak branch unions and low, heavy branches. In order to limit the risk of branch failure, strategic and timely developmental pruning is critical. This selection maintains a strong resistance to the elm leaf beetle and other foliage foraging insects, but it is a preferred food source for leafhoppers and related pests. There are numerous Cathedral elms on some of the toughest planting sites across the Twin Cities. Discovery

Cathedral elm planted by Don Willeke in 1976 - Dean Parkway, Minneapolis.

www.MTGF.org

The Discovery elm (U. davidiana var. japonica) is similar to AccoladeTM in that it has been around for a long time. This tree is much slower growing than other elm selections and achieves a smaller, rounded crown at maturity. Although this tree pres-

Frontier elm growing in field plots at the University of Minnesota.

ents a slower growth rate, codominant leaders are quite common in the tree’s dense crown. Consequently, Discovery elms require a fair amount of crown thinning throughout their first ten years. Discovery was selected and introduced by Jeffries Nursery and Rick Durand of Manitoba, Canada, and is one of the few Asian elms hardy to USDA Zone 3. (Continued on Page 8) SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 7


Elms for 21st Century (Continued from Page 7) Frontier Frontier elms (U. minor x U. parvifolia) have the unique characteristic of turning deep burgundy in fall. Selected from a hybrid of the European field elm and the Chinese elm, this smaller selection is used widely in small, urban spaces in USDA Zone 5 and warmer climates. Unlike other elms trialed in the Twin Cities area, this selection does not exhibit significant winter hardiness in northern climates. When exposed to a true USDA Zone 4 winter (or colder) this selection may experience twig dieback and delayed bud break the following spring. Nonetheless, when planted in protected locations and with proper care, Frontier should be considered for expanded use in northern climates.

tree is fairly easy to find at commercial nurseries. Jefferson Jefferson elm (U. americana) is an interesting American elm selection cloned from a tree that still grows on the National Mall in Washington D.C. Unlike most American elms, which are tetraploid, Jefferson is uniquely triploid. This selection has an elegant upright form and is resistant to DED and the elm leaf beetle. The tree requires significantly reduced levels of maintenance throughout its life due to a lower incidence of branch inclusion, especially when compared to Princeton and Valley Forge American elms. The Jefferson elm is a recent release, but thanks to its superior form and limited levels of maintenance, it is quickly gaining extensive support in the arboriculture and urban forestry fields. New Harmony

Homestead

Jefferson elm growing in field plots at the University of Minnesota.

The Homestead elm (complex hybrid of U. pumila, U. minor, and U. x hollandica heritage) was introduced by the elm breeding program at the U.S. National Arboretum. This selection has a mature upright form and a vigorous growth rate. Nursery evaluations have demonstrated that the tree may experience minor winter damage (i.e. sunscald and cambial damage), but these injuries do not appear to have any adverse effects on the tree’s long-term health. Although Homestead elms have a high resistance to DED, they are one of the elm leaf beetles favorite food sources. Among elm selections, this

The New Harmony (U. americana) elm is another selection introduced by the U.S. National Arboretum. This tree experiences early rapid growth, and has a highly desirable vase form upon reaching maturity. In the fall, New Harmony elms turn bright yellow, in much the same way that American Elms did prior to the DED infestation. The tree requires moderate levels of maintenance, and has good resistance to DED and the elm leaf beetle. This selection is considered by some to be more desirable than the Valley Forge cultivar, thanks to its classic form and reduced early-life pruning requirements. (Continued on Page 9)

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Elms for 21st Century (Continued from Page 8) New Horizon New Horizon (U. pumila x U. davidiana var. japonica) is an elm selection introduced by the University of Wisconsin that possesses a vigorous growth rate. With respect to maintenance, this tree requires a relatively high level of pruning during the early stages of its life, due to its predilection for co-dominant leaders and bulky side branches. New Horizon elms maintain one of the highest resistances to DED and most insect pests. However, like the Homestead selection, it has proven susceptible to attack from elf leaf beetles. Considering fast growth and high DED resistance, this selection is a worthy component of an urban forest. introduced by the University of Wisconsin that possesses a vigorous growth rate. With respect to maintenance, this tree requires a relatively high level of pruning during the early stages of its life, due to its predilection for co-dominant leaders and bulky side branches. New Horizon elms maintain one of the highest resistances to DED and most insect pests. However, like the Homestead selection, it has proven susceptible to attack from elf leaf beetles. Considering fast growth and high DED resistance, this selection is a worthy component of an urban forest. Patriot The Patriot elm (U. davidiana var. japonica x U. ‘Urban’) is a more recent introduction that owns impressive green and glossy summer foliage. This tree’s form is a bit more upright yet still vaselike, and despite experiencing rapid growth, requires lower levels of maintenance than Cathedral, Princeton, or Valley Forge. Patriot elms are highly resistant to DED and most insect pests. Studies conducted by Townsend and Douglass (2004) demonstrated a 100% survival rate seven years after being inoculated by DED. The selection is also extremely cold hardy, making it worthy of every urban forester's “Top-10” list. Patriot is relatively easy to find, thanks to expanded cultivation that has increased commercial availability. Pioneer Pioneer (U. glabra x U. minor) is one of the few elm selections marketed as a USDA Hardiness Zone 5 tree and is a unique hybrid of two European elm species. Pioneer elms are distinguished by their dense globular crown, which upon www.MTGF.org

Patriot elm growing in field plots at the University of Minnesota and on a public boulevard in Minneapolis (right).

reaching maturity, becomes more broad than tall. However, its form is easy to modify as a young tree with timely developmental pruning. The leaves of this tree are deep green and maintain a unique shape, which is most similar to that of Wych elms (U. glabra). This selection’s resistance to DED is somewhat less than other American hybrids, and it can sustain severe damage from the elm leaf beetle. Previous evaluations conducted in Minneapolis found that Pioneer elms suffered moderate winter damage; however, specimens growing at the University of Minnesota have fared quite well over the last 20 years and have become well-established members of the landscape.

Prairie Expedition The Prairie Expedition (U. americana) elm is a relatively new introduction from North Dakota State University. This selection maintains the classic mature vase shape associated with elms, and is marketed as a USDA Zone 3 tree, indicating robust winter hardiness. The tree requires moderate levels of maintenance and possesses a good level of resistance to DED and insect pests. Due to its classic cathedral-like form and tolerance to compacted soils and general urban pollution, the Prairie Expedition elm is a good choice for urban sites throughout the Twin Cities. (Continued on Page 11) SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 9



Elms for 21st Century (Continued from Page 9) Princeton Princeton (U. americana) is an elm cultivar that was selected for “superior horticultural qualities” prior to the North America DED epidemic (Stennes, 2003). The tree’s mature form is upright and vase shaped, and due to the early development of side branches and inclusions, substantial pruning is required throughout the tree’s initial life stages. Princeton elms have some resistance to DED, but are highly prone to leaf damage from Japanese beetles. This selection is widely available, and with heavy and timely doses of developmental pruning, it can develop an attractive mature crown. Because of the inherent structural issues with Princeton, it should only be used where timely pruning can be performed. Prospector The Prospector elm (U. davidiana var. japonica) is a medium size tree with light-

Two allées of Princeton elm growing in Minneapolis showing both the juvenile (left) and mature forms (right).

grey bark and a similar form to the American elm, but with lower drooping branches. This selection has a moderate growth rate and excellent DED resistance. In general, the tree is resistant to insect

pests (such as the elm leaf beetle) with the exception of leafhoppers, which can disfigure the tree’s foliage. In addition to this particular insect susceptibility, the Prospector elm has exhibited some hardiness issues such as twig dieback in the winter. During the summer months, this selection grows with high vigor and may experience some problems with stem breakage because of branch inclusions at unions. St. Croix

A Pioneer elm on Olson Memorial Highway in Minneapolis taken 10 years apart shown in 2007 (left) and 2017 (right).

www.MTGF.org

The St. Croix elm (U. americana) is a recent selection derived from a very large tree growing in Afton, MN. After demonstrating survival after exposure to DED, clones of this tree were included in DED screening trials conducted by the University of Minnesota Elm Selection Program (UMESP). This cultivar has a spreading vase-shaped crown, and a very fast growth rate. The vigorous growth requires high levels of maintenance in order to maintain structural integrity and limit bark inclusions. St. Croix has demonstrated good resistance to DED and most other insect pests but is susceptible to Japanese beetle feeding like all American elms. (Continued on Page 12) SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 11


Elms for 21st Century(Continued from Page 11) TriumphTM TriumphTM (U. davidiana var. japonica x U. davidiana var. japonica) is another introduction selection from the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IL. This tree shares a variety of visual similarities with AccoladeTM, but has larger leaves and is less likely to experience branch inclusion and breakage. The tree is resistant to DED and one of the few elm selections to have putative resistance to elm yellows (TriumphTM, n.d.). There are reports of the TriumphTM experiencing high susceptibility to elm leaf beetles. This selection has demonstrated vigorous growth rates and health on brownfield sites. Several of these trees have been successfully growing on Nicollet Island for over twenty years. These characteristics make the TriumphTM a great choice for tough urban sites. Valley Forge The Valley Forge elm (U. americana) is

a true American elm selection with upright and arching branches that produce a broad vase shaped crown. This tree grows rapidly, and in order to ensure longterm health and a robust branching structure, very frequent developmental pruning must be employed throughout the initial stages of growth (the first 10 to 15 years). As the selection gets older, it may reach a more manageable form, but maintenance will still be necessary until A Triumph elm on Olson Memorial Highway in Minneapolis taken 10 years permanent canopy is apart shown in 2007 (left) and 2017 (right). established. Valley Forge has proven to be the foliar leaf diseases in the spring, but this most resistant elm cultivar to DED exposure usually does not lead to long(although still not immune) and is also term problems for the affected trees. highly resistant to the elm leaf beetle. The Selected References tree is quite susceptible to Japanese bee& Further Reading tles and leaf curling aphids, which feed on Townsend, A. and L. Douglass. 2004. its foliage (McPherson, 2009). Evaluation of elm clones for tolerance to Dutch Because of the exceptionally high elm; Disease. Journal of Arboriculture (30)3. International Society of Arboriculture, Champaign, levels of maintenance required of IL.; Townsend, A., S. Bentz, and L. Douglass. 2005 young Valley Forge, this tree is not Evaluation of 19 American elm clones for tolerance recommended for planting on a to dutch elm disease. Journal of Environmental Horticulture 23(1). large scale, rather as an individual and in locations where it can be Giblin, C. and J. Gillman. 2004. Elms for the maintained professionally for many Twin Cities: a selection guide for arborists and urban foresters. Department of Forest Resources, years after planting. TM

University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

Vanguard

A young St. Croix elm growing at the University of Minnesota (above) gives no hint of the mature size and form of the parent tree (below) shown with its champion, Mark Stennes.

12 MTGF CLIPPINGS ~ SPRING / SUMMER 2020

TM

VanguardTM (complex hybrid of U. davidiana var. japonica and U. pumila) is another rapid growth elm that follows closely behind Danada CharmTM in annual growth rate. In research trials conducted at the University of Minnesota, this selection had the second highest incidence of branch breakage caused by bark inclusions. Additionally, VanguardTM has a tendency to form co-dominant leaders while in the juvenile stage and has difficulty forming a strong, central leader. Timely pruning to maintain strong central leaders is an important maintenance strategy. With respect to hardiness, the tree has a high degree of drought and cold tolerance. Although resistant to DED, this selection has a high susceptibility to pests such as the elm-leaf beetle. Additionally, VanguardTM may encounter

Pinchot, C., C. Flower, K. Knight, et al. 2017. Development of new Dutch Elm disease-tolerant selections for restoration of the American Elm in urban and forested landscapes. Proceedings of Workshop on Gene Conservation of Tree Species -Banking on the Future 53-63., Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station, Portland, OR.; Smalley, E. and R. Guries. 1993. Breeding elms for resistance to Dutch elm disease. Annual Review of Phytopathology, 31, 325-352. Miller, F. 2002. New elms for the landscape and urban forest. The Morton Arboretum, Lisle, IL. Santamour, F. Jr. and S. Bentz. 1995. Updated checklist of elm (Ulmus) Cultivars for use in North America. Journal of Arboriculture 21(3). McPherson, G., L. Costello, J. Harding, S. Dreistadt, M. L. Flint and S. Mezger. 2009. National elm trial: initial report from Northern California. Western Arborist, 35(3), 32-36. ; Griffin, J., W. Jacobi, G. McPherson, C. Sadof, J. McKenna, M. Gleason, N. Gauthier, D. Potter, D. Smitley, G. Adams, A. Gould, C. Cash, J. Walla, M. Starrett, G. Chastagner, J. Sibley, V. Krischik, A. Newby. 2017. Ten-year performance of the United States national elm trial. Arboriculture and Urban Forestry, 43(3), 107-120. Stennes, M. 2003. Good news for the American elm. Shade Tree Advocate 5(4).New Varieties of Elm Raise Hope of Rebirth for Devastated Tree. The New York Times, December 5, 1989. p. C4. TRIUMPH™ elm. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.mortonarb. org / trees-plants/treeplant-descriptions/triumph™ elm.

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University of Minnesota Hires Turf Research Field Facility Manager Gary Deters is the new Turf Research Field Facility Manager with the Turfgrass Science team. Deters is “looking forward to working with the turfgrass researchers, and helping to continue the great work coming from the University of Minnesota. I am a proud graduate of the University of Minnesota, where I majored in Environmental Horticulture with an emphasis in Turfgrass Management. I have spent over half my life in the golf course industry, with the previous six years as a golf course superintendent at St. Cloud Country Club. I hope my experience in the field will give the researchers a golf course superintendent’s perspective on our trials and experiments. I am excited to help maintain the research fields at the Turfgrass Research, Outreach, and Education Center,” said Deters. Deters’ passion for turfgrass management evolved from being a lifelong avid golfer, and it’s still one of his favorite things to do. He enjoys traveling the world with his wife, and have been to “15 different countries over the past five years with the hope to add more in the future.”

Save the Date! 2020 MTGF / UM FIELD DAY THURSDAY, AUGUST 13

Gary Deters

Deters is also a fitness enthusiast, and enjoys a good workout at the gym. On the lighter side, He is a big fan of Star Wars and Seinfeld. I am excited to be back on the St. Paul campus and living in the Twin Cities metro. I have a lot of great memories of being a student at the University of Minnesota, and I am looking forward to creating new friendships and memories as a part of the turfgrass team in the Department of Horticultural Science.

At this time, we plan to present Field Day as scheduled at TROE Center and UFORE Nursery. We will keep you informed of any changes to our plans during these uncertain days. Stay safe, keep healthy and be positive!

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Inver Grove Heights Location 5500 Blaine Avenue Inver Grove Heights, MN 55076 SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 13


Youth Engagement in Arboriculture By JACK FAJE and CHAD GIBLIN Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota

Introduction The Youth Engagement in Arboriculture (YEA) program works to promote youth engagement in urban forestry, arboriculture, and urban natural resources. This not only exposes young Minnesotans to academic paths and career options in these fields, but also fosters a culture of stewardship for trees and the environment in future stakeholders. In addition to promoting a viable career field to the youth engaged in the program, YEA offers a recreational experience that few are able to otherwise experience. Tree climbing offers a challenge that allows one to feel a sense of accomplishment and increased self-esteem after ascent into the canopy of a mighty tree. Each year YEA offers a variety of programming including school presentations, learning experiences in the Urban Forestry Outreach Research & Extension (UFore) Lab and Nursery, and climbing camps at local schools and at the University of Minnesota. In 2019, over 1400 youth participated in YEA programs, with more than 100 hours of programming delivered by UMN staff, students, and volunteers. School Presentations To celebrate Arbor Month in Saint Paul, a tree-themed poster contest for 3rd grade classrooms is conducted annually citywide. As part of the poster contest, YEA partners with City of Saint Paul Urban Foresters to visit classrooms, teaching kids about the importance of the trees around them and about the work that is being done to manage and protect their urban forest. Basic tree biology and tree benefits are shared along with fun facts about trees commonly found in Minnesota. To recognize the 2019 winner of the poster competition, a tree planting ceremony was held at Martin Luther King Recreation Center in partnership with Capitol Hill Gifted & Talented Magnet along with representatives from the Mayor’s office and other local dignitaries. More advanced classroom curriculum engaged 5th graders at Four Seasons A+ Elementary and 7th graders at Creative 14 MTGF CLIPPINGS ~ SPRING / SUMMER 2020

Fun and challenging climbs at the University of Minnesota’s Summer Youth Program recreational tree climbing camps.

Arts Secondary School and Humboldt Secondary School in Saint Paul. During these events YEA and City of Saint Paul staff hosted stations that helped students learn about tree phenology, tree inventories, and methods of conducting tree research. YEA Climbing Camps A major part of YEA programming – and the part students are most excited for – are the tree climbing camps! Young people are able to gain the experience of climbing trees in a safe environment and gain confidence when they accomplish their climb using modern climbing systems. YEA tree climbing camps maintain full compliance with the American National Standard for Arboricultural

Operations Safety Requirements (ANSI Z133) and incorporate the expertise of onstaff arborist technicians during planning and implementation of the events. In addition to safety, YEA focuses on treating participants on an individual level so that everyone can participate at a level they feel comfortable while still being challenged to overcome an objective that they help define. At each climbing event, staff present on the ground interact with youth to teach them about trees or to cheer on those actively engaged in a climb. Other ground activities include a slackline for practicing limb walking skills as well as a rigging games challenge where students can practice teamwork while moving a load with blocks, pulleys, and porta wraps. Challenge Day closes with Prize Time to acknowledge everyone. (Continued on Page 15) www.MTGF.org


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urban forestry. Youth Engagement in Arboriculture works year round to spread awareness of trees and their benefits as well as offering hands on experiences through school visits and climbing camps. Students and young adults that participate in YEA climbing camps and classroom visits have gained new experiences that inform their interactions with trees as well as a new perspective on trees and the important role they play.

(Continued from Page 14) Climbing camps launched in March 2019 with high school sophomores from Hmong College Prep Academy visiting the University of Minnesota. During the visit, students enjoyed a campus tour of the UFore Nursery and Lab, a drone demonstration, and an indoor climbing session at the UMN Saint Paul Gym. School-age engagement continued in May as Arbor Month in Minnesota begins. YEA contributes to the celebration by bringing am appreciation of trees and urban natural resources to young people throughout the month. In early May YEA hosted a public climbing event at the Eden Prairie Arbor Day celebration at Round Lake Park. This event ran alongside the Minnesota Society of Arboriculture’s Tree Climbing Competition and offered a climbing experience to the youth of the community. Throughout the rest of Arbor Month in Minnesota YEA brought climbing camps to three 5th grade classrooms at Four Seasons A+ Elementary and three 7th grade classrooms at Creative Arts Secondary School. These camps are conducted in partnership with the City of Saint Paul and truly give students a new perspective on the public parks that are right outside their classrooms! The 5th grade students at Four Seasons A+ Elementary experienced climbing in beautiful, mature bur oaks at Merriam Park and 7th grade students at Creative Arts Secondary School climbed at Kellogg Park, giving students a great view of the Mississippi River and Downtown Saint Paul from the treetops. Summer for YEA brought the Youth Engagement Program from Como Park Zoo & Conservatory to the University of Minnesota Campus. This program gives high school students a chance to experience opportunities in conservation and natural resources through field trips and service learning in their community. These unique experiences offer hands-on opportunities to young adults as they dig deep into what they are excited about as they approach adulthood. In July and August 2019, YEA hosted Recreation & Wellness’ Youth Program Summer Camps at the University of Minnesota for two five-day climbing camps for youth 10 to 15 years old. During this event, young tree climbers have the opportunity to participate in treethemed scavenger hunts and record their own tree observations and data in YEA Field Books. Each day, campers level-up in their tree knowledge and climbing experiences culminating in a Challenge www.MTGF.org

2019 School Partners • Barack & Michelle Obama Elementary School • Capitol Hill Elementary School • Cherokee Heights Elementary • Creative Arts Secondary School • Four Seasons A+ Elementary School • Groveland Park Elementary School • Highland Park Elementary School • Highwood Hills Elementary School • Hmong College Prep Academy • Humboldt Secondary School • L'Etoile du Nord Elementary School • Linwood Monroe Arts Plus Elementary • Mississippi Creative Arts Elementary School

Enjoying the view Downtown St. Paul with a 7th grade climber from Creative Arts Secondary School.

Day at the conclusion of each camp. Campers can choose their own adventure as they participate in timed climbing events, create works of art in their field books, and support each other in team building exercises. Challenge Day closes with Prize Time to acknowledge everyone’s accomplishments. In October of 2019, YEA offered on-site instruction and tree climbing experiences to the Tree Trust Youth Build team who attended two days of climbing workshops at the University of Minnesota. YouthBuild members come to this program to gain exposure to skilled trades and typically come from low-income families and have faced challenges in their educational experiences. As the season was ending, the Conservation Corps of Minnesota and Iowa (CCMI) visited the University of Minnesota in early November to participate in the College & Career Day. At this event, YEA staff offered CCMI a chance to climb trees on campus using professional rope access systems and get a taste for future career and academic paths in arboriculture and

2019 Volunteers • Alissa Cotton – UMN Forest Resources Alumnus • Leland Hatcher – City of Saint Paul • Leah Keeler – Mpls. Park & Recreation Board • Cy Kosel – City of Saint Paul (ret.) • Mike Kosowski – Harmony Tree Works • Victor Lazarz – DS Contract Climbing LLC • Karl Mueller – City of Saint Paul • Mary Pederson – City of Lakeville • Alex Plattes – Mpls. Park & Recreation Board • Kerrick Sarbacker – Branch & Bough Tree Service • Nels Spence – Bartlett Tree Experts • Taylor Stockert – City of Saint Paul • Kelly Taylor – Mpls. Park & Recreation Board Program Sponsors • City of Saint Paul • Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board • Minnesota Department of Natural Resources • Minnesota Turf & Grounds Foundation • United States Forest Service Equipment Support & Donations • DMM • Sherrill Tree • TreeStuff • Wesspur Program Directors • Chad Giblin and Monica Randazzo Arborist Technicians • Brian Luedtke, Kiley Mackereth, Kerrick Sarbacker and Brian Volz Student Technicians • Noah Buraglio, Katie Connolly, Ben Converse, Jack Faje, Dan Petters, Luke Plunkett, Taylor Stockert and Graham Wessberg

SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 15


UMN Turfgrass Science Program is Appreciative Of Funding from Variety of Groups and Agencies By DR. ERIC WATKINS Professor, Turfgrass Breeding and Genetics, Department of Horticultural Science, University of Minnesota (Editor’s Note: This article was reprinted from Dr. Eric Watkins’ blog at www.umn.turf.edu, a great source for answers about turf.) If you are a regular reader of this blog, you have read about projects led by a number of different researchers in our group at the University of Minnesota. I recently wrote a short article published in Golf Course Management about the high cost of turfgrass research. Fortunately, in Minnesota there is tremendous support for research from professional turfgrass organizations. This funding allows us to run a top-notch turfgrass research facility and seek other funding that builds off of our baseline capacity. So where does the funding for the UMN turfgrass science program come from?

grateful for the foresight of those who originally founded the MTGF over 25 years ago. In recent years, MTGF has provided researchers with oversized novelty checks at an award ceremony associated with the Northern Green. Following the presentation the MNLA recognizes the landscape design winners from the year previous; watching the videos of these amazing designs served as a reminder that large fake checks can’t be cashed for personal use.

Seed producers at a field day in northern Minnesota. Photo credit: Yinjie Qiu.

northern Minnesota, primarily in Roseau and Lake of the Woods counties. The seed producers support research activities at the Magnusson Research Farm where UMN researchers investigate new cultivars for seed production along with best management practices to improve yield of those grasses. A number of graduate students (pictured above right) have been funded with help from this group. Several of these groups have also made regular contributions to the Donald B. White and Jean G. White Turfgrass Graduate Fellowship fund. Dr. White was the turfgrass breeder at the University of Minnesota for over four decades and educated scores of current turfgrass managers. If you would like to both honor Dr. White’s legacy and support turfgrass research, you can contribute to the fund.

Local Funding from Professional Groups The Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation (MTGF) has, since 2001, donated over $1.75 million to research at the University of Minnesota, the majority of which has directly funded turfgrass research. Without this consistent, generous funding, it is hard to imagine maintaining a turfgrass research program at UMN. We are fortunate that this group is so supportive, and we are particularly

Installing sensors on a green at Rush Creek Golf Club. Photo credit: Matt Cavanaugh.

MTGF President Matt Cavanaugh (left) with a gift for research support of the turf programat the Unviersity of Minnesota. Also pictured at the 2020 Northern Green is Dr. Eric Watkins, University of Minnesota. Photo credit: Jeff Turtinen 16 MTGF CLIPPINGS ~ SPRING / SUMMER 2020

The Minnesota Golf Course Superintendents’ Association contributes between $40,000 and $50,000 each year for member-driven research and support of our research center. Currently, they are supporting our work on monitoring winter stresses of turf using environmental conditions on golf greens. The Minnesota Parks and Sports Turf Managers Association have supported research related to sports fields. Recently, they have funded the purchase of GPS tracking devices that were used in research led by Dr. Chase Straw. The Minnesota Turf Seed Council represents turfgrass seed producers in

Funding from State Agencies The Minnesota Department of Transportation, through the Local Road Research Board, has been a tremendous partner, funding our work since 2010. We have completed several projects aimed at improving Minnesota roadsides. For more information, you can visit our roadside research page. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has funded a number of our projects related to improving turfgrass seed production through both agronomics and breeding. This work has focused on both perennial ryegrass and fine fescues. (Continued on Page 17) www.MTGF.org


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Funding from Federal Agencies

(Continued from Page 16) The Metropolitan Council, with funding from the Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment, has supported several years of research aimed at reducing water use on Twin Cities lawns. This work has funded a number of outreach activities, including our presence at the Minnesota State Fair. More information about this collaboration can be found on the Metropolitan Council website. Funding from National Turfgrass Groups Our primary funder in this area has been the United States Golf Association. Their most significant funding effort was led by Brian Horgan when he was at UMN: The Science of the Green Initiative. The USGA has also funded a number of other projects including projects no-mow fine fescues, prairie junegrass breeding and genetics, reducing water use on golf courses, fine fescues for low-input golf course fairways, and cold-temperature germination of creeping bentgrass. We recently found out that the Washington Turfgrass Seed Commission will be funding work in our group on use preferences for artificial and natural turfgrass.

Our most significant funding source over the past several years has been the Specialty Crop Research Initiative, a grant program out of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture. This program has funded two major projects on fine fescue breeding, involving a number of our collaborators at other universities. We have also received funding, led by Purdue University, to improve fine fescue sod forming ability from the Specialty Crop Multi-State Program, that is administered by the Agricultural Research Service of the USDA. For those of you who have supported our program over the years, whether through gifts of money, gifts of time, or just your presence at events: Thank You!

Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation Donates $100,000 for Green Industry Research in 2020 By JEFF TURTINEN Executive Director Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation Fortunately for the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation, the 2020 Northern Green took place as scheduled in midJanuary. The MTGF along with the Minnesota Nursery and Landscape Association partner to host the Northern Green annually. Almost all of MTGF’s proceeds from this event go towards turf and grounds research each year. That being said, the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation (MTGF) is very proud to to be donating $100,000 towards 2020 turf and grounds research and operations. 2021 Northern Green The 2021 Northern Green is scheduled for January 13-15. We are in the midst of extraordinary days and the Northern Green committee is considering a Plan B, C and D. Under consideration are: 1) Event occurs in person as usual on the scheduled dates; 2) Event is postponed to later dates in 2021 and held in person as usual; 3) Event occurs mostly in person as usual but with attendance restrictions addition of a virtual component to supplement (hybrid model), and 4) Event cannot occur in person due to www.MTGF.org

attendance restrictions and is held in a completely virtual format. Since 1992, the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation has donated $1,750,516 towards turf and grounds research. 2020 Funding The MTGF Board of Directors approved two funding requests at its March Board Meeting. The Board approved a donation of $50,000 towards the University of Minnesota Turfgrass Science Extension at its March Board Meeting. The Board feels the continued operations and research at TROE Center continues to be very beneficial for Minnesota turf managers. The MTGF Board also approved a donation of $50,000 towards Teaching, Research, and Outreach Programs conducted by the University of Minnesota

Departments of Forest Resources and Plant Pathology. The MTGF is not formally connected with the University of Minnesota. However, one of its primary goals is to support and be advisory to the development of turf and grounds research, education and outreach programs at the University of Minnesota College of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences and the Department of Horticulture Science. The MTGF played a major advisory role in the planning and development of the University of Minnesota, Turf and Grounds Research and Outreach Center and currently helps fund operating costs. To date, the MTGF has funded more than 1.6 million dollars towards turf and grounds research in Minnesota. The Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation (MTGF) was formed in 1993 as a non-profit organization. It is partnership of seven turf and grounds related associations and the University of Minnesota. As a member of one or more of the following MTGF allied associations, you are also considered a member of the Minnesota Turf and Grounds Foundation. Contact the MTGF office at 763-7034983 or jeff.turtinen@mtgf.org. SPRING / SUMMER 2020 ~ MTGF CLIPPINGS 17


Former University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Football Coach Glen Mason, center, converses with Doug Daniel, Eco Works Supply, left, and Mike Sonnek, Golf Course Superintendent at the Royal Golf Club in Lake Elmo. Sonnek also serves on the MTGF Board of Directors representing the Minnesota Golf Course Superintendents’ Association. Coach Mason recently keynoted a workshop for the Minnesota Park and Sports Turf Managers Association.

18 MTGF CLIPPINGS ~ SPRING / SUMMER 2020

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