Revolutionizing Turfgrass Management: Recognition’s Impact on Bermudagrass Control

Dr. Fred Yelverton, weed specialist and a seasoned turfgrass expert with over three decades of weed management research experience, recently shed light on the groundbreaking product known as Recognition and its transformative impact on bermudagrass management within zoysiagrass and St. Augustinegrass. Having been affiliated with NC State University since 1984, Dr. Yelverton’s insights carry substantial weight in the field.

Recognition is a blend of Trifloxysulfuron (Monument) and metcamifen, which functions as a herbicide safener. It has found its niche in sod production, particularly due to its compatibility with Fusilade. When Fusilade is paired with Recognition, it becomes safe for use on zoysiagrass and St. Augustinegrass, allowing for the comprehensive removal of bermudagrass and other unwanted grass varieties.

According to Dr. Yelverton, Recognition doesn’t provide partial protection; rather, it offers complete safening. This means that sod producers can effectively eliminate bermudagrass and other undesirable grasses in zoysiagrass and St. Augustinegrass fields. Dr. Yelverton emphasized, “It is undoubtedly one of the most remarkable technologies I’ve witnessed throughout my career. If I were a sod producer, I would get used to using Recognition because I think it’s going to be a huge management tool for zoysia and St. Augustinegrass.”

One of Recognition’s standout features is its ability to expedite field turnover for sod farms while enabling the sale of purer sod. Dr. Yelverton elaborated, “If you have a farm that grows bermudagrass, zoysiagrass, St. Augustine and centipede, all those warm-season grasses, now you can turn those fields over faster and come back in more quickly with St. Augustine and zoysia and kill any bermuda that comes back.”

Before Recognition, there was no effective method for removing bermudagrass in St. Augustinegrass fields. Dr. Yelverton emphasized the significance of this product, stating, “I wouldn’t hesitate to convert a field that previously grew bermuda to St. Augustine or zoysiagrass, utilizing Recognition and Fusilade for control.”

Yelverton said with Recognition, you can boost the level of Fusillade rate to 24 oz. per acre for two applications to remove bermudagrass. “It won’t even affect the zoysiagrass or St. Augustinegrass whatsoever.” He suggests between 1.3 – 1.9 oz. of Recogntion per acre, with the lower rate sufficing for safening and the higher rate suitable for controlling tough weeds like nutsedge.

Looking ahead, Dr. Yelverton indicated ongoing research to explore Recognition’s compatibility with herbicides beyond Fusilade. He expects more information to emerge in the coming years, offering a broader spectrum of weed management options.

“This is certainly a product that will be used by lawncare companies, sports field management and by golf course superintendents. But it all starts with sod production. That’s where all turf starts so it’s such a big deal with St. Augustinegrass and zoysiagrass on sod farms currently to control bermuda.”

Pictured above shows Recognition and Fusillade used to remove bermuda around plugs of Sola™ St. Augustine at Oakland Plantation Turf Farm. Photos were taken one week apart.

Observations on the Sod Farm

Will Neisler, General Manager of Oakland Plantation also shared his thoughts on using Recogntion with Fusilade.

“We see it as a very powerful tool in our arsenal for dealing with bermudagrass in our zoysias and St. Augustines. Earlier this month we did some spot treatment of bermuda that popped up in our newly planted Sola™ (St. Augustinegrass) field. In the past, we would be using RoundUp, and we would have been creating large bare spots in the field that would last for years. With Recognition, in combination with Fusilade, we are able to target just the bermudagrass, and not worry about damaging the Sola plugs,” Neisler shared.

He explained this allows them to confidently spray a larger border around the bermuda, since there is no trade-off to spraying St. Augustine, they can include more area to be sure you are not missing any hidden bermudagrass.

This also allows us to move forward with planting a new field as much as a year earlier than before. Normally we would have spent another year growing a row crop and monitoring this field, to ensure we did not have any bermudagrass. So Recognition allows us to potentially gain an additional year of harvest from a field, which adds up to a lot, and makes the higher price tag worth it,” Neisler said.

In conclusion, Recognition is ushering in a new era of turfgrass management, offering unprecedented control over bermudagrass while safeguarding prized grass varieties. Its potential for use with other herbicides is an exciting prospect for the industry.

For more information on Recognition, click here.

This article was written by Cecilia Brown.

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