June 1 , 2007
Razorback Stadium Field Renovation

Recently the turf inside razorback stadium was renovated by Pat Berger, CGCS and his staff. The razorbacks have played on ‘Tifway’ bermudagrass for the last several years, but the field was renovated this May due to aesthetic problems with bermudagrass off-types and contamination. The new field was seeded with ‘Riviera’ bermudagrass. Riviera bermudagrass has similar color to Tifway, but Riviera has better winter hardiness and traffic tolerance than Tifway. The following images provide a pictorial guide through the recent renovation. More information will come later this summer as the field is prepped for this year’s football season.

Riviera bermudagrass was seeded in razorback stadium following fumigation. Riviera seed is coated like many other commercially available bermudagrass seeds. The coating reduces the number of seeds per pound (A) requiring slightly higher seeding rates to achieve the appropriate pure live seeding rate recommendations. The seed comes coated with a fungicide to reduce seedling diseases (B and C). Pat typically keeps plenty of seed on hand (D) since Riviera is also used in Baum stadium on George Cole field.

Riviera seed

Five days after seeding (DAS) (May 3, 2007) seeds had not yet germinated (E). Bermudagrass seeds will germinate in 7 to 12 days assuming soil temperatures are 64 ºF or more. Germination blankets (F) were used to keep the seed from moving and to help increase germination rates by retaining moisture and temperature.

Razorback stadium 5 DAS

12 DAS (May 10, 2007) - seeds were just beginning to germinate (G) and sand based Riviera sod from the Turfgrass reserach center had been laid around the perimeter of the field (H).

Razorback stadium 12 DAS

17 DAS (May 15, 2007) - the field was uncovered (I and J) and the seedlings (K) were beginning to put out their first tillers (L).

Razorback stadium 17 DAS

23 DAS (Monday, May 21, 2007) - the field was filling-in nicely (M, N, and P) thanks to new stolons (O) that were beginning to form.

Razorback stadium 23 DAS

27 DAS (Friday, May 25, 2007) - the field received its first mowing (Q and R) and the density of the field was continuing to improve (S and T).

Razorback stadium 27 DAS

31 DAS (Tuesday, May 29, 2007) - the field was mown for the second time (U, V, and Y) and the canopy was approaching full coverage (W and X) across the field. A testament to Pat’s ability to grow turf is that he can even grow turfgrass in artificial turf (Z).

Razorback stadium 31 DAS

More updates on the field renovation will follow in future months! Make sure to forward this turf tip to others and encourage them to signup for the ARKTURF listserv.

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