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LIMITED BIOCONTROL

Q

I keep hearing about biocontrol of turf diseases with a product called TX-1. How does this product work? via the Internet

A

TX-1 is a bacterium that produces a compound with anti-fungal properties. In the laboratory, TX-1 is effective against Anthracnose, dollar spot, Pythium, leaf spot, fairy ring and summer patch, just to name a few. Unfortunately, once the product is applied outside of the laboratory in real turf situations, it fails to control these diseases any better than traditional fungicides. Researchers at Purdue University created optimum conditions in the field for the study, but found inconsistent results. TX-1 did control dollar spot early in the season, when disease pressure was low, but later it could not keep up. With continued research and testing, TX-1 may prove to be useful, but currently the control is limited.

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Do you know why some 2-stroke engine manufacturers recommend high-octane fuel? via the Internet

A

Gasoline should ignite easily and burn as cleanly as possible. The octane number you see on the gas pump indicates how easily the gasoline burns without detonating. The higher the number, the slower the gasoline burns and resists detonation. Lower-octane gases burn relatively fast. As our power tools become more sophisticated and powerful, a slower, cleaner burning gasoline should help improve operation as well as prolong the life of the equipment. I'm sure you've noticed the oily feel and smell to the exhaust from some of these power tools. If the manufacturer recommends using a higher-octane fuel, use it. The reduction in wear and tear on the equipment as well as lower potential pollution are the benefits. Most manufacturers do not recommend using ethyl alcohol, as it tends to pull in moisture from the air that form acids in the fuel, which can destroy the engine. If ethyl alcohol (gasohol) is unavoidable, try to choose a product that contains less than 10 to 11 percent.

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