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John Reitman

By John Reitman

USGA funds new list of golf course management research projects

The USGA has funded 15 new research projects to advance turfgrass science this year through its Mike Davis Program for Advancing Golf Course Management. This brings the total of ongoing Davis Program-funded projects to more than 60.

With this latest round of projects, which are taking place at the University of Florida, Kanasas State, New Mexico State, North Carolina State, Rutgers, Texas A&M and Washington State, the USGA has funded more than $50 million in turfgrass research ventures since 1983. 

The USGA's long-term goal to support research includes a $30 million pledge to reduce water use announced in April 2023. To that end, more than half of active Davis Grants are focused on projects intended to drive water use efficiency and conservation while also maximizing playing conditions. These projects include optimizing irrigation techniques, improving drought resistance and converting out-of-play areas to conserve water and habitat. 

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The USGA has funded more than $50 million in turfgrass research projects since 1983. USGA photo

Other notable projects receiving funding this year include a pilot effort at Texas A&M and Tennessee to analyze Google course review data to better understand what improves, and detracts from, the golfer experience.

The USGA says the Davis Program research projects have contributed to a 29 percent decrease in water use in the past 20 years.

Additionally, the USGA-says its overall investment in course sustainability saves the turf industry nearly $2 billion per year, including:

> $201 million from advancing irrigation with efficiencies in turfgrass water use
> $529 million from advancing irrigation scheduling with soil-moisture meters
> $469 million from advancing naturalized rough.

Click here for a list of current USGA-supported research projects.

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