Participate in dollar spot research at Penn State

July 6, 2016 in Articles, Grad Students, Research

409591_4422459767468_497350002_n (1)Dollar spot is probably the most important or chronic disease of turfgrass on golf courses. As a turfgrass manager you understand how detrimental dollar spot can be both to the turf and to your budget. Dr. Kaminski’s lab at Penn State is currently conducting research experiments focusing on pertinent issues relating to the turfgrass disease dollar spot and the causal agent.  This new project, headed by graduate student Cameron Stephens, will focus on fungicide resistance management and seasonal variation in disease severity.

During his travels and discussions with turf managers, Dr. Kaminski has found that many superintendents are having trouble managing the disease at different times of the year. Previous research has shown that early season fungicide applications can help to reduce Sclerotinia homeocarpa populations and therefore delay the onset of symptoms. The development of severe dollar spot epidemics during the autumn months, however, remains somewhat of a mystery.  The goal of the research is to better understand the influence of chemical application on the development of resistance as well as on the seasonal variation in dollar spot populations throughout the year.


Mr. Stephens will evaluate the scope of fungicide insensitivity/resistance across different chemical classes for isolates collected during this study.  Collected isolates will be subjected to resistance screening as well as molecular analyses. We are therefore, looking for golf course superintendents interested in participating in this 2-year study. In return for submitting samples monthly (no costs will be involved), the participants will gain a better understanding of fungicide resistance across multiple chemical classes at their course.

Understanding the levels of fungicide resistance will help save money through appropriately tailoring fungicide programs aimed at controlling dollar spot. Signup now to participate in our study. Signing up notes your interest, but you’re not obligated to participate.