Historical ETo-based irrigation scheduling for St. Augustinegrass Lawns in the South-Central United States
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2017, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Irrigation of residential and commercial lawns in excess of plant water requirements can result in waste of potable water supply and negative public perception regarding turf landscapes. A 3-year field study was conducted to evaluate simple historical ETo-based irrigation scheduling for maintenance of St. Augustinegrass [Stenotaphrum secundatum (Walt.) Kuntze Raleigh] lawns in College Station, TX, USA. Whole main plots were assigned crop coefficients of 1.00, 0.60, 0.36, or 0.24 (K100, K60, K36, and K24) used to adjust historical ETo (47-year average). Sub-plots received N rates of either 0.0, 0.4, or 0.8kgha1 month1 during the experimental period each year. Irrigation treatments were applied 3 days per week from July through September each year. Acceptable turf quality was maintained when irrigation depths were 47% of actual ETo. The K60 treatment provided adequate irrigation for turf performance but caused 31% overwatering in the wettest year. The K36 treatment resulted in acceptable turf quality not only in the wettest year, but also showed complete recovery of the turf sward by the end of fall in each year. This research has outlined a simple and effective method for conserving water used to irrigate St. Augustinegrass lawns.