September 21, 2015 – The Georgia Golf Environmental Foundation has added another chapter in the long story of its support of turfgrass research at the University of Georgia. The foundation will give almost $10,000 to UGA to help fund the ongoing search for more environmentally sustainable golf course grasses. The money will help compensate graduate students working with Dr. Brian Schwartz from UGA Crop and Soil Sciences Department.
“We are very happy to provide this support to Dr. Schwarz and UGA,” said GGEF research committee chairman Kyle Marshall from Capital City Club in Woodstock. “It seems to us to be such a sure thing to support. I don’t know of any research department anywhere that has had the record of success that UGA has produced when it comes to turfgrass.”
Marshall said Schwartz continues the tradition of excellent turfgrass research at UGA established by the likes of Dr. Wayne Hanna and Dr. Glenn Burton. Schwartz and Hanna partnered on the recent release of a new drought tolerant Bermudagrass called TifTuf.
“While the nature of our funding is to review programs each year, we do expect this support of Dr. Schwartz’s research will be long-term,” Marshall said. “The fact that he is doing much of this work on fully functioning golf courses promises real world results but it also adds considerably to the cost in terms of travel. It makes sense for us to support this research that promises to benefit all superintendents and therefore the golf industry.”
Schwartz believes that “input from experienced superintendents around the state that know what is needed day in and out will pay dividends well into the future.” “Partnership with the Georgia Golf Environmental Foundation and the Georgia Golf Course Superintendents Association is the best way to develop new turfgrasses that will benefit the game of golf,” he said.
The GGEF has supported various research efforts since it was established in 2004 with UGA being a major beneficiary. Total funding of research efforts by GGEF has topped more than $150,000 over the past decade. GGEF also provides an annual day-long free education seminar for golf course superintendents with the latest information on advances in environmental sustainability for golf courses.
GGEF is the philanthropic arm of the Georgia Golf Course Superintendents Association and relies on the support of clubs, many individuals and organizations to fund programs and projects that help golf courses fulfill the environmental, recreational and economic needs of their communities. GGEF delivers programs and services involving information collection, research, education and outreach that communicate the best management practices of environmental stewardship on the golf course.