Parks and Recreation Industry News

News related to the Parks and Recreation industry.
The National Park Service is proud to be a leader among federal agencies in the implementation of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). With over 80 million acres of land, 45,000 buildings and cultural landscapes ranging from croplands to historic rose gardens, we face every conceivable pest problem.

Since implementing an IPM program in the early 1980's, the Park Service has reduced pesticide use by over 60 percent while improving the effectiveness of our pest management efforts. Key elements in this success were formal training and the provision of printed and audiovisual materials.

One of our products is an IPM Manual which is now available in a second edition. It provides descriptions of the biology and management of 21 species or categories of pests. The Park Service is pleased to offer this information to the IPM community.

The National Park Service wishes to thank the Entomology Department at Colorado State University. They designed the original NPS IPM Manual website and made it available on the Internet before the Park Service's natural resource website was fully operational.
Carol DiSalvo
IPM Coordinator

More ... http://www.nature.nps.gov/biology/ipm/manual/ipmmanual.cfm
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released results of a limited field monitoring study of artificial-turf playing fields and playgrounds constructed with recycled tire material or tire crumb. The study was intended to gain experience conducting field monitoring of recreational surfaces that contain tire crumb. EPA will use the information to help determine possible next steps to address questions regarding the safety of tire crumb infill in recreational fields.

“The limited data EPA collected during this study, which do not point to a concern, represent an important addition to the information gathered by various government agencies,” said Peter Grevatt, director of EPA’s Office of Children’s Health Protection. “The study will help set the stage for a meeting this spring, where EPA will bring together officials from states and federal agencies to evaluate the existing body of science on this topic and determine what additional steps should be taken to ensure the safety of kids who play on these surfaces.”

More ... http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/d0cf6618525a9efb85257359003fb69d/c8d28e3f9f3ca0a4852576880053bed4!OpenDocument

Release date: 12/10/2009
Contact Information: Dale Kemery kemery.dale@epa.gov 202-564-7839 202-564-4355
December 10, 2009

From High Country News

By Felice Pace, High Country News, Guest Writer, 11-24-09

If the American Farm Bureau Federation has its way, the issue of whether herbicide spraying over water requires a Clean Water Act permit will be heard by the Supreme Court. A coalition of agricultural groups led by the Federation has petitioned the nation’s highest court to reverse an appellate court decision which found that such spraying requires an NPDES clean water permit. NPDES permits are required when pollution is delivered to a water body from a point source. What constitutes a point source for Clean Water Act purposes has been a major US legal issue for well over a decade with several previous cases reaching the Supreme Court.

More ... http://www.newwest.net/topic/article/the_pesticide_wars/C559/L559/
'Thermal Blue' and 'Dura Blue' hybrids put to the test

KNOXVILLE, TN—The transition zone can be one of the most challenging places to maintain high-quality turfgrass; changeable growing conditions in these regions often prove too hot for some grasses and too cold for others. Finding turfgrass that thrives in these challenging environments can be perplexing for turf management professionals and homeowners alike.

Now, an answer to this growing dilemma may be found in new breeds of hybrid bluegrasses. Bred for their ability to tolerate heat and drought, these hybrids can outperform traditional bluegrasses in transition zone areas. A study published in a recent issue of HortScience tested two new bluegrass hybrids, 'Thermal Blue' and 'Dura Blue', to investigate optimal seeding rates, correct seed timing, and the interaction of mowing height and fertility requirements for both bluegrass cultivars. The study results show promise for both hybrids in the transition zone.

More ... http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2009-11/asfh-hba110409.php

Public release date: 4-Nov-2009
Contact: Michael W. Neff
American Society for Horticultural Science

WASHINGTON, DC, November 5, 2009 (ENS) - To pay for better clean water accountability and regulatory enforcement in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, Congress has authorized new funding to reduce pollution in local rivers and streams flowing into the bay. Legislation passed by the House and Senate contains a record $50 million for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Bay cleanup efforts, with $19 million in new funding for regulatory enforcement and accountability.

More ... http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/nov2009/2009-11-05-091.asp
WASHINGTON, DC, November 4, 2009 (ENS) – Pesticide labeling to reduce off-target spray and dust drift was proposed today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The new instructions are aimed at improving the clarity and consistency of pesticide labels and help prevent harm from spray drift, the toxic spray or vapor that travels from treated agricultural fields and into neighboring communities.

The agency is also requesting comment on a citizens' petition to evaluate children’s exposure to pesticide drift.

More ... http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/nov2009/2009-11-04-092.asp

by Eric Mortenson, The Oregonian
Friday July 17, 2009, 7:00 AM

It may be that golf's swing mantra -- keep your head down -- keeps players focused on birdies, not birds. But whether golfers notice or not, when the gallery along the ninth fairway at Stone Creek Golf Club in Oregon City includes a dive-bombing kestrel and a redtail hawk, it's apparent that change is making the turn.

Specifically, golf is getting greener. Across the United States, but especially in the Pacific Northwest and particularly in the Portland area, golf courses are adopting environmentally sustainable practices. They are using far less water, fertilizer and weed-killer than before and employing grass varieties that can thrive without meticulous care.

More ... http://www.oregonlive.com
LINCOLN, NE—Just like the rest of us, golf courses show their age—especially on putting greens, which experience more foot traffic than anywhere else on golf courses. Putting greens, which comprise only about 1.6% of the total area on most courses, require more intensive management than any other part of the course. To keep putting greens in top form, turfgrass experts study ways to provide proper nutrients to the root zone, a critical area for maintaining healthy turf.

Contact: Michael W. Neff
American Society for Horticultural Science

More ... http://www.eurekalert.org
Club turning to composting as part of environmental efforts

By Patty Pensa | South Florida Sun Sentinel
6:02 PM EDT, May 20, 2009

BOCA RATON - At the Broken Sound Club -- where upscale meets earthy -- solar panels heat its pool, water machines replace plastic bottles and motion-sensitive light switches save electricity.

And then there's composting. The private club is turning to the age-old farm practice in its latest and most expensive effort to go green.

More ... http://www.sun-sentinel.com

Published: May 20, 2009, New York Times

In seven years of overseeing every root and blade of grass on the grounds at the Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa., Matt Shaffer has built a reputation on innovation and conservation. An early advocate of course playability over aesthetics, he long lived by the maxim “the drier, the better.”

But when a stifling heat wave threatened the club’s greens before the 2005 United States Amateur Championship — a record 17th U.S.G.A. championship at Merion — Shaffer turned to his old boss, Paul R. Latshaw Sr., for advice. Latshaw told him there was one way he could continue to cut down water use while keeping his turf dry and as fast as a microwave: sensors.

More ... http://www.nytimes.com
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