Mon., August 6, 2012 9:05am (EDT)
Georgia Partners With Cuba
By Josephine Bennett
MACON, Ga. —
Georgia-bred grass could soon blanket golf courses in Cuba. Researchers
at the University of Georgia are working with their counterparts in the
island nation to make that happen.
UGA scientists visited a start-up research program at the University of
Matanzas in Cuba. Researchers there are trying to develop grasses that
will thrive on 20 Cuban golf courses to be built over the next decade.
UGA Turfgrass specialist Clint Waltz says testing Georgia grass in Cuba
and collaborating with scientists there could benefit their research as
well with Cuba's 12-month growing season. But political differences pose
"The hurdles on this being able to transfer plant material are going to
be high hurdles to get over, but we would like to be involved as Cuba
continues to change and evolve and then who knows, hopefully one day
relations will change between our governments and we want to be right
there on the ground floor."
UGA's Turfgrass research program is over 50 years old. The industry
contributes $7.8 billion a year to Georgia's economy.