TifEagle exhibits all the traits golf superintendents need from a greens-quality hybrid bermuda grass. Released in 1998 by the Georgia Coastal Plain Experiment Station in Tifton, Georgia, some 20 years after it introduced TifDwarf, TifEagles' leaf blades are extremely fine and erect. TifEagle maintains a density capable of repelling annual bluegrass, delivers excellent trueness for putting, and accepts overseeding well. It produces few seedheads and maintains its color throughout heat and longer into the fall.
Several morphological characteristics give TifEagle its unique advantages:
- Excellent root system development and structure.
- Provides a high quality putting surfaces at cutting heights of .125" and lower.
- Rhizomatous rather than stoloniferious growth habit.
- Superior color under cool conditions.
- Tolerance to verticutting.
- Rapid regrowth from mechanical injury.
TifEagle was evaluated in over 25 golf course environments from North Carolina to Barbados and California from 1993 to 1997. The data collected from these sites show that TifEagle is capable of producing a premium quality putting surface meeting the highest golfing standards. TifEagle putting greens have been overseeded with Poa trivialis since 1994.
High quality, uniform overseeded putting surfaces are routinely obtained with a minimum loss of play. The rhizominous growth habit, with appropriate topdressing and verticutting, provides an excellent seedbed for uniform overseed establishment. TifEagle's tolerance to close mowing gives the golf course superintendent an excellent tool to manage and control Spring transition. TifEagle will produce higher quality putting surfaces than TifDwarf, but also requires more intensive management. Thus, TifEagle may not be the best variety for all golf green situations.
Research has shown that inadequate maintenance of TifEagle will result in thatchy and inferior putting surfaces. Therefore, each superintendent considering TifEagle is encouraged to review management practices to determine if the Greens Committee and golf course budget will support the required management inputs.