Over the past several years Dr. Karnok has presented numerous talks at turf conferences, turf
field days, workshops and seminars throughout the country. There are three primary subject
areas in which presentations are made, each bring primary areas of research interest to
Dr. Karnok. Short presentations of 30 minutes up to 4 hour seminars on each topic can be
given. A brief description of each of the topic areas is presented below.
Managing Turfgrass Root Systems
It is generally agreed among turfgrass managers that managing turfgrasses to ensure optimum
rooting is one of the primary keys to successful turfgrass management. Unfortunately, compared
to above-ground plant parts, there is little knowledge and even less understanding of plant
root systems. The primary objective of this presentation is to acquaint the participant with
those factors that affect turfgrass root growth and how that can best be managed. The
presentation is tailored for cool season turfgrass regions, warm season turfgrass regions or
the transition zone.
Using Wetting Agents on the Golf Course
Wetting agents have become a common management tool for golf course superintendents.
Unfortunately, there are many questions surrounding their effective use. Superintendents
want to know what effect wetting agents have on turfgrass root systems, irrigation efficiency,
salt removal, disease control, drainage, compaction, etc. They want to know which wetting
agents are safest to use from the turfgrass standpoint. Questions concerning the influence
of thatch/organic matter on wetting agent performance are often asked. What about formulation,
does it make a difference? Does doubling or tripling the rate increase effectiveness or
longevity of a wetting agent? What about effective depth of penetration by a wetting agent
into the soil? Is it important to aerify before applying a wetting agent? Finally, of the 80
plus wetting agents now being sold for turfgrass use, which one is the "best?" These questions
plus many more are addressed in 4-hour seminar. Shorter versions of the major questions can
also be presented.
Management of Localized Dry Spots and Water Repellent Soils
Localized dry spots (LDS) caused by water repellent or hydrophobic
soil is a common occurrence on most golf courses and even some sand
based sports fields. The causes, detection and management of water
repellent soil is a significant challenge for most superintendents
and other turfgrass managers. The emphasis of this seminar is placed
on our current understanding of those factors contributing to the
development of water repellent soils and the various management
practices available to combat the chronic problem. Special emphasis
and discussion is put on the use of wetting agents and their characteristics.
At the conclusion of this presentation the participants should be
able to list he various types of biostimulants currently being marketed,
discuss the validity of the various claims made in promotional materials,
list the various types of active ingredients found in biostimulants
and explain why some biostimulants have more potential to perform
as advertised than others. Some time is spent explaining how the
turfgrass manager can conduct his/her own testing of these materials.