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Horticulture and Natural Resources

Faculty Spotlight

JackFryJack Fry, Ph.D.

Professor of Turfgrass Science, Director of Rocky Ford Turfgrass Research Center

Dr. Fry's research is focused on reducing inputs for turfgrass, including water, fertilizer, and pesticides. In this effort, he has focused his research over the past 10 years on zoysiagrass, a turfgrass that requires fewer inputs. Fry has worked in conjunction with researchers at Texas A&M-Dallas to develop two new zoysiagrass cultivars, Chisholm and KSUZ 0802 (formal name coming soon). These grasses are drought resistant, cold hardy, and require minimal inputs to maintain quality. They are best suited for use in the transition zone of the United States - the area in the middle of the country where growing good turf is difficult.

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BardenCharles Barden, Ph.D.

Professor of Forestry, Director of Tuttle Forestry Research Center

Dr. Barden focuses in two major areas, forestry and water quality. As he states, "I try to use trees to solve environmental problems."

Additionally, he works hand-in-hand with the Kansas Forestry Service, (a state agency), on common problems throughout the state. He is also working on two separate research projects: one focusing on prevention of deer damage to newly planted trees and the other on stream bank stabilization.

To prevent damage to the young trees, he has established research and demonstration plantings with several landowners across the state to conduct trials involving translucent tree shelters to protect the young trunks from the deer.

The idea behind stream bank stabilization is to stop soil erosion and to establish deep-rooted plants to protect the banks. This research has been done in conjunction with Haskell Indian Nations University.

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