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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Tifton, Georgia » Crop Protection and Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #214018

Title: Registration of the 'Pristine' Zoysiagrass

item Scully, Brian
item Nagata, R
item Cherry, R
item Trenholm, L
item Unruh, J

Submitted to: Journal of Plant Registrations
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/2/2008
Publication Date: 1/1/2009
Citation: Scully, B.T., Nagata, R.T., Cherry, R.H., Trenholm, L.E., Unruh, J.B. 2009. Registration of 'Pristine' Zoysiagrass. Journal of Plant Registrations. 3(1):65-68.

Interpretive Summary: Zoysiagrass is one of a few underutilized warm season turf species grown in the southern and eastern U.S. Zoysiagrass first gained widespread acceptance in the U.S. with the release of ‘Emerald’, a narrowed-leafed type and ‘Meyer’, a wide-leafed type variety in the mid-1950s. Both varieties were breed the U.S.D.A. and had improved adaptation along the U.S. eastern seaboard, but never achieved the anticipated level of market penetration. Nevertheless, these two varieties have persisted for over a half a century as the dominant varieties in the specialty turf market. The purpose of this research was to enlarge the diversity of narrow-leafed zoysiagrass varieties and develop an alternative to ‘Emerald’ in the specialty turf market. A breeding line coded as BA-305 was identified as superior to ‘Emerald and released under the trademarked name of ‘Pristine’. Overall, ‘Pristine’ established faster than ‘Emerald’ and had a deeper green color. Additionally, ‘Pristine’ produced 21% shorter and 19% narrower leaves than ‘Emerald’, and produced fewer seed heads that generally exhibited a smaller morphology. These leaf and seed head traits conferred a visibly more refined canopy structure and texture to ‘Pristine’. Zoysiagrass may never become a dominant turf species in the southeastern U.S., but better turf quality, enlarged varietal diversity and faster growth rates can enhance its position in the marketplace.

Technical Abstract: The zoysiagrass variety ‘PristineFloraTM Zoysia’ (aka ‘Pristine Zoysia’) was developed at the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station and initially approved for released in 2004. It is marketed through Master Licensing Agreement with Environmental Turf, Inc. located in Avon Park, FL 33825. This variety of zoysiagrass was derived as an open pollinated progeny that originated from ‘Emerald’, an interspecific hybrid between Zoysia japonica Stued. by Zoysia tenuifolia (L.) Merr., which was developed and released in 1955. ‘Pristine’ was tested in Florida under the coded breeding line number BA-305 (Reg. No. ________ , PI ____________). A plant patent was submitted 2005 and assigned application number 11/174,338, which was tentatively approved in late 2006. BA-305 will be marketed under the synonym ‘PristineFloraTM Zoysia’, which was its’ agreed commercial designation in the United States.