Michael Fidanza, Ph.D.

  • Professor of Plant and Soil Sciences,
  • (Division of Science, Penn State Berks Campus).
  • Courtesy Professor of Turfgrass Science,
  • (Dept. Plant Science, Penn State University Park).
Michael Fidanza, Ph.D.
Penn State - Berks Campus
111 Luerssen Building
(P.O. Box 7009)

Reading, PA 19610
Work Phone: 610-396-6330
Fax: 610-396-6024

Connect with Michael Fidanza, Ph.D.



  1. Ph.D., Agronomy, University of Maryland, 1995.
  2. M.Agr., Agronomy, Pennsylvania State University, 1989.
  3. B.S., Agricultural Science, Pennsylvania State University, 1987.

Responsibilities and Interests:

Turfgrass management and turfgrass ecology; turfgrass IPM with an emphasis on weed and disease management; fairy ring biology and management in turfgrass ecosystems; plant health and soil ecology; seed ecology; evaluation of mushroom compost for ag crops and turf/ornamentals; landscape horticulture; pedagogy (teaching and learning).

Professional Background:

  • Professor, Berks Campus, Pennsylvania State University, 2011–present.
  • Associate Professor, Berks Campus, Pennsylvania State University, 2006–2011.
  • Courtesy Professor, Dept. of Plant Science (formerly Dept. of Crop and Soil Sciences), Pennsylvania State University, 2002–present.
  • Assistant Professor, Berks Campus, Pennsylvania State University, 2000–2006.
  • Research and Development Biologist, Aventis Environmental Science, 1999–2000; AgrEvo Environmental Health, 1997–1999; AgrEvo USA Company, 1995–1997.

Selected Publications:

  1. McMillan, M. F., Fidanza, M. A., S. K., Boerth, T., Bigelow, C., Cisar, J., Soldat, D., Karas, I., Williams, K. 2013. Monitoring seasonal soil water repellency in USA golf course putting greens. International Turfgrass Society Research Journal. 12:815-818.
  2. Davis, D.D. and M.A. Fidanza.  2011.  Fresh recycled mushroom compost suppresses artillery fungi sporulation: a 4-year field study.  Journal of Environmental Horticulture, 29(2):91-95.
  3. Fidanza, M.A., D.L. Sanford, D.M. Beyer, and D. Aurentz.  2010.  Analysis of fresh mushroom compost.  HortTechnology 20:449-453.
  4. Fidanza, M.A., J.E. Kaminski, M.L. Agnew and D. Shepard.  2009.  Evaluation of water droplet size and water-carrier volume on fungicide performance for anthracnose control on annual bluegrass.  International Turfgrass Society Research Journal 11:195-205.
  5. Kaminski, J.E. and M.A. Fidanza.  2009.  Dollar spot severity as influenced by fungicide mode of activity and spray nozzle. HortScience 44:1762-1766.
  6. Moody, D.R., M.J. Schlossberg, D.D. Archibald, A.S. McNitt, and M.A. Fidanza.  2009.  Soil water repellency development in amended sand rootzones.  Crop Science 49:1885-1892.
  7. Fidanza, M.A., J.L. Cisar, S.J. Kostka, J.S. Gregos, M.J. Schlossberg, and M. Franklin.  2007. Preliminary investigation of soil chemical and physical properties associated with type-I fairy ring symptoms in turfgrass.  Hydrological Processes 21:2285-2290.
  8. Fidanza, M.A. 2006.  Class lecture attendance, course performance, and course evaluation: A case study of an introductory plant science course.  North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture Journal 50(1):28-32.
  9. Fidanza, M.A. 2006. Incorporating cultural diversity into college science. p. 289-296. In Handbook of College Science Teaching. J.J. Mintzes and W.H. Leodard (eds.). National Science Teachers Association, Arlington, VA.
  10. Fidanza, M.A., L. J. Stowell, W. Gelernter, P. J. Landschoot, D.L. Sanford, N. Bosold, and J. Welchans.  2006.  Survey of irrigation water for golf courses in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Applied Turfgrass Science doi:10.1094/ATS-2006-0210-01TT.
  11. Fidanza, M.A., P.F. Colbaugh, H.B. Couch, S.D. Davis and D.L. Sanford. 2002. Conventional and innovative methods of fairy ring management in turfgrass. Science and Golf IV:631-642.

  12. Dernoeden, P.H., M.A. Fidanza, and J.M. Krouse. 1998. Low maintenance performance of five festuca species in monostands and mixtures. Crop Science 38:434-439.
  13. Fidanza, M.A., P.H. Dernoeden, and M. Zhang. 1996. Degree-days for predicting smooth crabgrass emergence in cool-season turfgrass. Crop Science 36:990-996.
  14. Fidanza, M.A., P.H. Dernoeden, and A.P. Grybauskas. 1996. Development and field validation of a brown patch warning model for perennial ryegrass turf. Phytopathology 86:385-390.


Research Interests

Turfgrass Science