Dr. Patton Lab


The turfgrass industry is comprised of athletic fields, golf courses, grounds, lawns, sod farms, and roadsides. Across the US, turfgrass covers ~40 million acres. As urban areas push outwards into rural areas and suburbs are developed, lawns, parks, athletic fields, and other green spaces are added. Challenges to the turf industry are many and include a need to increase sustainability (water, nutrients, labor, fuel, etc.), manage pests (biology, ecology, resistance, invasive, etc.), and develop new technologies (cultivars, devices, data science, etc.).

Dr. Patton's research program is designed to address current and potential future challenges facing the turfgrass industry. The goal is to plan, implement, and lead projects that reduce inputs and environmental risks while improving turf quality and health. Dr. Patton’s research currently focuses on two key areas:

Weed Biology, Ecology, Resistance and Management. Enhancing Management of Common, Troublesome, and Invasive Weeds in Turf. Objective: First, determine strategies for optimizing weed control while simultaneously reducing inputs through discovering methods to enhance herbicide performance. By enhancing weed control, fewer herbicide applications will be necessary. A system approach to understanding the biology and ecology of individual weed species is needed to create effective control programs. Second, study the biology of resistant weeds and discover the mechanisms of herbicide resistance and identify alternative control approaches for stakeholders.

Advancing of Low-Input Turfgrasses and Management Strategies. Three research areas are ongoing within this strategy.

Focus 1: Evaluation and Improvement of Zoysiagrass (Zoysia spp.) Germplasm Adapted to the Midwest. Objective: Identify novel zoysiagrass germplasm adapted for use in the Midwest and determine the physiological basis for enhanced winter hardiness.

Focus 2: Improving the Development, Establishment, Management, and Production of Low-input Turfgrasses Adapted to the Midwest. Objectives: This work supports farm diversification through the expansion and adoption of low-input, sustainable sod varieties by growers and consumers through research and the development of comprehensive education resources (agronomic, economic, and marketing) for sod farm businesses. Dr. Patton works with a team of researchers to identify barriers that are preventing stakeholders from using fine fescues and find innovative solutions to these barriers.

Focus 3: Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Sequestration in Urban Grasslands (Turf). Objectives: 1) quantify the extent of C and N stored in grassed areas as affected by plant species, management and stand age, and 2) examine the unique facets of grass management (mowing and plant species) that may exert control over C and N flux in these systems.


See our latest blog post titled "Video: Identification Tips for Fine Fescues" by @PurdueTurfDoc and @Ross_Braun from @PurdueHortLA featuring a video on plant morphology and visual differences among the fine fescues.


Cool way to start the day when a figure looks familiar while scrolling down and upon closer look you realize @crop_science is promoting one of your papers ☺️🥳💃🏻 Research supported by @USGAGrnSection in collaboration with @PurdueTurfDoc @ugatiftonturf https://twitter.com/crop_science/status/1360204195513716738

Crop Science@crop_science

With impending #freezing temperatures coming, let's look at some plant impacts and cold-tolerance traits. QTL mapping of zoysiagrasses showed stress tolerant and regrowth regions within cultivars of greatest cold tolerance. https://doi.org/10.1002/csc2.20368 @C5Turf #Weather

Interested in joining our crew full-time? We have an opening for an Associate Turf Technician! Apply here: https://careers.purdue.edu/job/West-Lafayete-Associate-Turf-Technician-IN-47906/710930000/


.@JohnDeere and @GCSAA_GIS have their 27th annual Collegiate Turf Bowl winner! Congrats to @BoilermakerTurf Purdue University for winning the traveling trophy, $4,000 and an opportunity to volunteer at a PGA Tour Event in 2021. (Photo courtesy: John Deere)

Drumroll... The winner of the 2021 GCSAA Collegiate Turf Bowl is Team #8 from Purdue University: Matthew Koebcke, Grant Fellers, Blake Notzen, Nicholas Oyler with advisor Cale A Bigelow, Ph.D.! Congratulations! #GolfIndustryShow

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Dr. Patton Lab - Horticulture & Landscape Architecture, 625 Agriculture Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907

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