Kevin Frank, Ph.D.

Kevin Frank

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Professor and Turf Extension Specialist
Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences



B.S., University of Wyoming, Crop Science
M.S., University of Nebraska, Horticulture
Ph.D., University of Nebraska, Horticulture

Overview of current program:

Develop management programs and provide recommendations to produce high quality, sustainable turfgrass systems.   

Dr. Frank’s extension responsibilities include:

  • Organizing and conducting educational events in cooperation with the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation including the Michigan Turfgrass Field Day and the Michigan Turfgrass Conference. 
  • Writing weekly updates throughout the season that are published through the MSU Turf Tips and Clippings Blog ( and the MSUE News website ( 
  • Serves as the MSU Turfgrass Committee Chair and as the MSU Turf Team liaison to industry stakeholders including the Michigan Golf Course Superintendents Association, Golf Association of Michigan, Michigan Golf Course Owners Association, Michigan Green Industry Association, and Michigan Nursery and Landscape Association. 
  • Other extension activities include speaking and appearing at numerous extension events and meetings; visits to golf courses, athletic fields, and turf sites throughout the state to diagnose problems and provide solutions; consulting with county extension educators for diagnosing problems and providing recommendations. 

Dr. Frank’s research areas:

Dr. Frank’s research program focuses on developing turfgrass nutrition programs, assessing the environmental fate of fertilizer applications to turfgrass, investigating irrigation practices, and management strategies to alleviate winterkill of turfgrass.  Dr. Frank conducts turfgrass cultivar evaluations through the National Turfgrass Evaluation Program and also conducts fertilizer product evaluations in turfgrass. 

Courses taught:

  • Turfgrass Strategies, spring semesters in Beijing China for MSU China Turf Program.

Websites of interest:


"Effects of Drought and Traffic Stresses on Physiological Responses and Water Use Characteristics of Creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera) and Annual bluegrass (Poa annua)", Golf Course Superintendents of America - Environmental Institute for Golf, MSU Project GREEEN, and the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation.  Merewitz, E. B. (Co-Principal), Frank, K. W. (Co-Principal)

"Long Term Nitrogen Fate Research", United States Golf Association. Frank, K. W. (Principal).



  1. Lee, S.K., K.W. Frank, J. Crum, and D. Warncke. 2013. Phosphorus and nitrogen rate effects for turfgrass sod established on a phosphorus deficient soil.  Int.Turf Soc. Res. J. 12:p. 207-215. 
  2. Frank, K.W., and E. Guertal. 2013. Nitrogen Research in Turfgrass. In Stier, J.C., B.P. Horgan, and S.A. Bonos (eds.) Turfgrass: Biology, Use, and Management.  Madison, WI: American Society of Agronomy.
  3. Frank, K.W., and E. Guertal. 2013. Potassium and Phosphorus Research in Turfgrass. In Stier, J.C., B.P. Horgan, and S.A. Bonos (eds.) Turfgrass: Biology, Use, and Management.  Madison, WI: American Society of Agronomy.
  4. Bauer, S., B. Horgan, E. Watkins, A. Hathaway, R. Calhoun, and K.W. Frank. 2012. Establishment of creeping bentgrass in annual bluegrass fairways using glyphosate and inter seeding. Applied Turfgrass Science 10. doi: 10.1094/ATS-2012-0127-01-RS.
  5. Guertal, E. and K.W. Frank. 2012. Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium fertilizer in turfgrasses. In Topicos Atuais Em Gramados III.  Fundacao de Estudos e Pesquisas Agricolas e Florestais.
  6. Frank, Kevin W., Yost, Ben. 2012 Turfgrass Management. In Master Gardener Manual, ed. Mary Wilson, East Lansing: MSUE.
  7. Frank, Kevin W. 2012. Golf Course Maintenance. In Contemporary Club Management (3rd edition), eds. Joe Perdue and Jason Koenigsfeld. CMAA, Alexandria, VA.
  8. Lee, S.K., K.W. Frank, and J. Crum. 2010. The Effect of Rootzone Mix and Compaction on Nitrogen Leaching in Kentucky bluegrass. Korean Turfgrass Science 24 (1): 45-49.
  9. Butler, T., K.W. Frank, and J. Bryan. Turfgrass development as influenced by phosphate and phosphite nutrient applications. 2009. Int. Turfgrass Res. J. 11:979-986.
  10. Gaussoin, R., K. Frank, T. Butler,H. Liu, C. Baldwin and W. Sarvis. 2009.  Foliar uptake of nutrients applied in solution to Creeping Bentgrass (Agrostis palustris Huds.), Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua var. reptans (Hausskn.) Timm) and Ultra-Dwarf Bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon x C. transvaalensis Burtt-Davy).   Proc. Int. Plnt. Nutrition Colloquium. Paper 1396.
  11. Frank, K.W. 2008. Nitrogen fate in a mature Kentucky bluegrass turf. In M Nett, M.J. Carroll, B.P. Horgan, and A.M. Petrovic (eds.). The fate of nutrients and pesticides in the urban environment. ACS Books/Oxford University Press.
  12. Carstens, J., T. Heng-Moss, F Baxendale, R. Gaussoin, K. Frank, and L. Young. 2007. Influence of buffalograss management practices on the chinch bug, Blissus Occiduus barber, and its beneficial arthropods. J. Economic Entomology. 100(1):136-147.
  13. Frank, K.W., K. O’Reilly, J.R. Crum, and R.N. Calhoun. 2006. The fate of nitrogen applied to a mature Kentucky bluegrass turf. Crop Sci. 46:209-215.