Working from the ground up

Feb 202011
Authors: Kari Pills

Behind your favorite sports field, golf courses and ski resorts are turfgrass managers who have studied turf management and know what is required to keep a lawn alive.

“I like working outside all the time,” said Chad Parron, a senior environmental horticulture major with a
concentration in turf management.

The CSU Turf Club, which includes 15 students, travels every year to the annual Turf Bowl that is held every

The competition this year was held in Orlando, Fla., with CSU placing 10th out of 30 schools.

“It’s the highest CSU has ever placed,” said Anthony Koski, a professor of horticulture and architecture who serves as the faculty coordinator for the team.

The Turf Bowl is usually held in a warm weather location and lasts from three to four days. Students compete in a series of tests that examine their knowledge in subject matter ranging from the diseases that infect turf to soil identification and weeds.

“They are tested on anything a golf course superintendent would have to know,” Koski said.  

This year, 30 different schools from across the country competed and were divided into about 90 teams, with
CSU contributing three teams.

Though Iowa State won the competition, those involved with CSU’s team consider it a step in the right direction for the turf management program.

The Turf Club began 22 years ago when Koski first came to CSU. At the time, the turf management concentration within the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture had only four students in it. Since then, the program has grown to 35.

“I joined (the turf club) for a resume builder and as an extracurricular activity,” said John Lambrecht, a senior environmental horticulture major who has been a member of the Turf Club for two years.  

Staff writer Kari Pills can be reached at

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