NC State turfgrass

Turfgrass Council of North Carolina Fourth Annual Turfgrass Research Symposium

Mark your calendar for NC State University’s Fourth Annual Turfgrass Research Symposium: Turfgrass Trends for Changing Times, on Tuesday, December 5 at NC State University Club. The symposium will feature the following:

  • Opening remarks by Dr. Jim Kerns, co-director, Center for Turfgrass Environmental Research and Education, NC State University, and Dr. Steve Lommel, associate dean and director, NC Agricultural Research Service.
  • Keynote speaker: Dr. John N. “Trey” Rogers III, professor, Turfgrass Management, Michigan State University – “North America 2026 World Cup – Challenges and Opportunities”
  • CENTERE Updates, Session I:
  • “Sustainable Water Management” – Dr. Grady Miller, professor and Extension specialist
  • “Approaches to Precision Turfgrass Fertilization Management” – Qiyu Zhou, assistant professor, Turfgrass Management
  • “Introducing Middle School Youth into The World of Turfgrass Through an Interactive 4-H Curriculum” – Matthew Clay, Wilkes County extension agent, and Liz Driscoll, 4-H specialist
  • Q&A Panel
  • Lightning Talks Session
  • “The Influences of Nitrogen Fertilization and Edaphic Factors on Take-All Root Rot Incidence” – Brandi Merrick, MS student, Turfgrass Pathology
  • “Optimizing tissue culture protocols in warm-season turfgrass species for genetic engineering applications” – Esdras Carbajal, Ph.D. student, Turfgrass Breeding
  • “Characterization of Non-Target Site Resistance Mechanisms of ALS Resistant Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua L.)” – Trip Rogers, Ph.D. student, Pesticide Fate
  • “The Physiological Basis of Drought Tolerance in Zoysiagrasses” – Emma Simpson, MS student, Turfgrass Physiology
  • “Determining the genetic diversity of 288 accessions of St. Augustinegrass” – Ty Thomas, Ph.D. student, Crop Genomics
  • “Response of root- associated microbial community of Bermuda and Zoysiagrass under compaction in turf field” – Sayada Momotaz Akther, Soil Microbiology
  • Q&A Panel
  • CENTERE Updates Session II :
  • “Strategies for Emerging Turf Insect Pests” – Dr. Terri Billeisen, Extension associate, Turfgrass Entomology
  • “Adventures in Keeping Grass Green: Turfgrass Pathology Updates” – Dr. Jim Kerns, professor, Turfgrass Pathology
  • “Exploring molecular tools for weed control and necessary steps for adoption in turfgrass” – Dr. Ramon Leon, professor and university faculty scholar of Weed Biology and Ecology
  • Q&A Panel
  • Lunch

To register to attend in-person, visit

To register for the live stream, visit