As we are entering a key time for turf disease management I decided to try to accelerate the pressure a little to try and pick out the optimum timings for fungicide application.
Knocking down Microdochium populations early will help to keep disease pressure lower through this high pressure time from early September through to November when the temperatures tend to drop down.
Using a sealed bag I took a plug from an indicator green and increased the humidity and temperature. By doing this we are taking the saprophyte which is feeding on organic
matter in thatch or soil which can survive for extended periods and introducing more favorable conditions to stimulate new mycelial growth from the old mycelium or conidia spores in the leaf litter. By monitoring how long this takes gives us a clue as to how active the disease is already.
This took around 8 days to generate any visible mycelium which shows that still needs a prolonged period of suitable conditions to begin the process.
However once the process started then the mycelium activity was significant.
The above time lapsed video was taken over a 36 hour period and shows how mycelium can dominate the sward quickly if conditions are right.