Turf for dry conditions

With changing environmental and climatic conditions, turf management has become more demanding. With water being a scarce ressource, turf managers are under pressure to reduce the consumption. So we've developed a range of turf varieties that can perform better under drought condition and help you future-proof your business. 

Results show that varieties with roots that go deep and have a high root mass, are better able to cope with changing environmental and climatic conditions like drought. We've identified two 4turf® varieties that are more drought resistant; 4turf® Fabian and 4turf® Tetradry.

A deep root mass means: 

  • Better growth during and after spring and early summer drought
  • Less repair and more playing hours 
  • Better visual appearance and less maintenance 
  • Less input of resources as water and fertilizer

The search for drought-tolerant varieties

Together with Copenhagen University, DLF is testing the root architecture of varieties at the worlds most advanced root screening facility, RadiMax. It enables imaging of roots down to 3.0 m depth and at the same time the grasses can be exposed to increasing drought conditions through a soil moisture gradient, which can be induced in the system. In this way, we can screen the root architecture of our varieties and find out which ones can perform under drought conditions. 

Differences in drought tolerance

Together with the University of Aberystwyth in the UK, we're looking to see which compounds and genes improve drought-tolerance. We're focusing on perennial ryegrass and the grass model species, Brachypodium, both of which are being tested at Aberystwyth's National Plant Phenomics Centre. The study helps us develop genetic markers that will advance our breeding efforts for drought-tolerance. And at our breeding station in Philomath, Oregon, we put new varieties through an intensive drought test every summer.