Remembering Dr. C. Reed FunkMonday, October 15, 2012 at 9:47 am
Posted by Jonathan Green
Reed was born in Richmond, Utah on September 20, 1928. All of his life he carried an identity characterized by modesty, kindness and concern for his fellow man. His early years, in the far west, served him well as preparation for his later achievements and fame. It should come as no surprise, to any of us, that America still produces such men.
One wonders whether his dream of creating superior turfgrasses was something that was in him in his early life; because this he certainly did.
Dr. Funk was the first to hybridize Kentucky bluegrass, which is without question, a major achievement. He also developed fine textured perennial ryegrass. Before this accomplishment perennial ryegrass was not a particularly attractive turf plant. He also developed high quality tall fescue plants that were a major improvement in the species.
In fact, he succeeded in changing the entire turfgrass industry, which was revolutionized by his inventions.
He was, of course, a great observer of the natural world. His discovery of endophytic fungi, living in symbiotic relationship inside grass plants, was the result of such observations.
When you review, in your mind, the span of his years and think of all the scientific discoveries that have been made, coupled with man’s struggles to control the use of this new knowledge, you offer thanks for this good man’s life. He made the grass better; that is a central achievement in this world.
With deep sympathy to his widow and family.
Barry K. Green Sr.
Jonathan Green & Sons, Inc.