UC Extension seeks to save water with drought-tolerant turfgrass in Southern California

December 13, 2022 -  By

Amir Haghverdi, University of California Cooperative Extension specialist and associate professor of agricultural and urban water management at UC Riverside, is using research to pinpoint irrigation strategies to help communities reduce demand for water and increase supply.

Haghverdi and his team performed stress tests on turfgrass to identify the lowest percent of evapotranspiration rate (ET) that it can withstand and still survive.

Results show that hybrid bermudagrass during summer in inland Southern California could keep its aesthetic value above the minimum threshold for 30 to 50 days, depending on the weather conditions, with irrigation application as low as 40 percent ET rate.

Tall fescue, a cool-season turfgrass, with 20 percent more water, showed signs of stress after only a few weeks and could not maintain its minimum acceptable quality.

Based on initial results for minimum irrigation requirement in inland Southern California, creeping Australian saltbush, a non-native species originally from Australia, and coyote bush, native to California, were top performers.

This article is tagged with , and posted in Irrigation+Water Management

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