Submitted to: Trade Journal Publication
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 5, 2012
Publication Date: August 1, 2012
Citation: Rice, P.J., Horgan, B.P., Rittenhouse, J.L. 2012. Evaluation of core cultivation practices to reduce ecological risk of pesticides in runoff from turf. USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research Online. 11(8):1-10. Technical Abstract: Stormwater runoff and surface waters have been shown to contain pesticides associated with turfgrass management, which has raised concern of their affect on water quality and aquatic organisms. We compared pesticide transport in runoff from bentgrass (Agrostis palustris) fairway turf managed with solid tine (ST) or hollow tine (HT) core cultivation to determine which cultivation practice is more proficient at mitigating environmental risk. Plots receiving HT core cultivation showed a reduction in runoff volume and pesticides transport with runoff. Pesticide concentrations in edge-of-plot runoff were used to calculate estimated environmental concentrations of the pesticides in a surface water receiving runoff from managed turf. Surface water concentrations of pesticides associated with runoff from turf managed with ST core cultivation exceeded the median lethal concentration (LC50) or median effective concentration (EC50) of 9 aquatic organisms evaluated. Replacing ST core cultivation with HT core cultivation reduced surface water concentrations of the pesticides to levels below the LC50 and EC50 for most these aquatic organisms; lessening risk associated with pesticides in runoff from the fairway turf. Results of this research provide quantitative information that will allow for informed decisions on cultural practices that can maximize pesticide retention at the site of application; improving pest control in turf while minimizing environmental contamination and adverse effects associated with the off-site tranpsort of pesticides.