Want to keep up with the latest news in lawn care and landscaping? Check back every Thursday for a quick recap of recent happenings in the green industry.

California Bill Seeks to Bring Large New Landscapes under State and Local Watering Laws
The California Senate on Aug. 26 sent Bill 1340 to Gov. Jerry Brown for his signature. The Bill by Sen. Lois Wolk closes a loophole in state law enabling large new landscaping projects for existing homes and businesses to avoid state and local water-efficiency requirements. Starting July 1, 2018, the bill requires a permit for the installation of irrigation systems for residential landscapes over 10,000 square feet and commercial landscape projects over 2,500 square feet. Under SB 1340, these projects must conform to current law requiring new and renovated landscape projects associated with new construction to obtain a local permit.

Dow AgroSciences Announces Power of MORE Rebates
Dow AgroSciences reports this year’s Power of MORE program kicks off with additional rebates. Customers who purchase Defendor specialty herbicide with the equivalent Dimension specialty herbicide on fertilizer are eligible for an $80 rebate per quart. Also, individuals who purchase products September through December 2016 will receive an additional incentive, based on the product. Qualifying products for The Power of MORE 2016-17 program must be invoiced during the purchase period, Sept. 1, 2016, through Aug. 31, 2017. Completed rebate forms and invoices must be submitted by Jan. 15, 2017, to receive a check in March or submitted by Sept. 30, 2017, to receive a check in December.

New TLF Twist Lock Fittings from Rain Bird for Drip Tubing Installations
Rain Bird has introduced new TLF Series Twist Lock Fittings for dripline and tubing installation. In addition to compatibility with industry-standard drip tubing, the TLF Series provides a solution for Rain Bird’s QF Dripline Header product. The fittings connect lengths of dripline or drip tubing with a tight, leak-free seal. The company says they’re ideal for use with all industry-standard ½”, ¾” and 1” dripline and distribution tubing, including Rain Bird’s XFD, XFS and XFCV dripline; XF blank tubing; and XT700 and XBS models.

Morbark Dealer Network Expands Internationally
Morbark, LLC, has signed agreements with Equipment Sales & Service Limited and Van Bemmel Machine Import BV to become international Morbark equipment dealers. Based in Edmonton, Equipment Sales & Service Limited (ESS) is the exclusive Morbark dealer in Alberta, Canada, handling both tree care and industrial equipment. With 20 years of experience, specifically in recycling, Van Bemmel Machine Import BV is the exclusive Morbark industrial equipment dealer in the Benelux nations of Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg, handling forestry, biomass and recycling equipment.

ASIC Announces the Passing of Industry Leader Glenn Bowlin
Respected industry professional,American Society of Irrigation Consultants Professional Member and friend to many, Glenn Bowlin, passed away on Tuesday, August 16th. ASIC says Bowlin was passionate about irrigation education, collected and researched irrigation products old and new and was instrumental in developing the digital Irrigation Museum.

National Forum on Climate & Pests to be Held in October in Washington, D.C.
The National Forum on Climate & Pests (NFC&P) will take place October 4-6, 2016 in Washington, D.C., and be streamed live online. The purpose is to bring together leading scientists who are working in the area of climate and pests with those from the larger scientific communities. A program agenda is available on the NFC&P website as well as online registration.

Caterpillar Shifting Production of Mini Excavators In-House
Caterpillar reports that it will shift design and production of its smallest hydraulic excavators to Caterpillar facilities beginning in 2018 as a successful, six-year strategic alliance with Wacker Neuson is phased out. Caterpillar will focus on growing its global mini excavator business as it leverages existing facilities and design teams to deliver cost effective and efficient new machines weighing less than three tons. Caterpillar’s Building Construction Products Division will design and manufacture the new machines, building on the proven attributes of the larger Cat mini excavators. Five of the current models (301.4C, 301.7D, 301.7D CR, 302.2D and 302.4D) manufactured by Wacker Neuson will phase out in mid-2018, and the 302.7D CR will phase out at the end of 2019. The 300.9D will also phase out at the end of 2019 or later if mutually agreed by both parties. Spare parts availability, technical support and warranty for current models will continue as Caterpillar and Wacker Neuson work together going forward. Other products sold and serviced by Wacker Neuson at Cat dealers and rental stores will not be affected.

STIHL Provides Firefighters Hands-on Chain Saw Training
STIHL Inc. recently hosted more than 30 firefighters for a day of chain saw operations and maintenance training at their headquarters in Virginia Beach. The firefighters, who were attending the state firefighters, were given an in-depth look at the operation and maintenance of the saws that STIHL chain saws. Students spent the day working with sawing, cutting, repairing and maintaining saws. When STIHL designed their Rescue saws, specifically for fire and rescue personnel, they did so with input from the Virginia Beach Fire Department. The company offers product application training to companies and municipalities (including many fire departments) across the country. Avenue™  South  registered  for  use  in  California

California Approves Use of Avenue South Herbicide
PBI-Gordon Corporation says Avenue South Broadleaf Herbicide for turfgrass is now registered for use in California, and ready to ship. A proprietary formula, Avenue South combines four proven active ingredients to deliver rapid control of more than 90 broadleaf weeks while offering an exceptional safety on warm-season turfgrass, including common and improved St. Augustinegrasses.

Rutgers Churns Out Improved Cool-Season Grasses
New Jersey maintains a nationally prominent role in designing new grass varieties for temperate climates around the world, reports Inside Jersey. The Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station maintains several sites at which turf grass is grown, managed and studied, but the heart of the breeding operation that produces new breakthroughs is a 206-acre site here. The site contains 40,000 3-foot by 5-foot plots of individually distinct grasses. Each one is rated for a number of characteristics every month. William Meyer, director of the Turfgrass Breeding Project, has led the team introducing 440 distinct new varieties in the past 20 years in cooperation with 20 commercial grass seed companies. Rutgers focuses primarily on bluegrass, perennial rye and fescues.

Phyllom’s grubGONE Registered for Use in California
Phyllom BioProducts Corp. reports that its grub control product, grubGONE, has been registered for use by lawn care operators and homeowners in California. There are no application restrictions when plants are blooming or bees are foraging for use of grubGONE, a microbial that relies upon the pest killing action of the galleriae strain of Bacillus thuringiensis.

Foley Inc. Annonces Promotions and Hires
Brian Vigilante has been promoted to Rental Services Sales Manager for Foley Rents and Matt Emerson has been hired as the BCP (Building Construction Product) Manager for the Machinery Sales Division. Foley, Incorporated is the Caterpillar Dealer in North and Central Jersey, Staten Island and Bermuda.

Palfinger Appoints New President for Americas Region
Lennart Brelin has been appointed President of the consolidated Americas Region, reporting to the Executive Board of PALFINGER AG. Business Area North America remains led by VP Mark Woody and Business Area South America by VP Ingo Erhardt, who will both report to Brelin moving forward. With market insight and industry experience in both business regions for more than 20 years, the company says Brelin is qualified for creating successful business growth.