It is November and the course is getting softer. The course looks great but if we drive where we aren’t supposed to be, you may leave a mess behind. The right of five is a good example of this. We pushed the rough mowing a little to far and it tracked up pretty bad. All superficial of course and will disappear soon.
We fertilized the greens on Friday. We will be increasing the iron rates as we get into the winter months. Many of the courses that escaped the winter wrath last year all had higher iron rates in common. I feel the iron will help harden off the grass and will enable it to tolerate the colder temperatures better. Last year we were using higher iron rates and we did in fact come through the December cold snap without any problems. We are also targeting some residual silver thread moss as well. We treated a few weeks ago with Quick Silver so now we are just treating it with the iron to avoid another herbicide application.
As I was changing cups the other day I couldn’t help but notice the Poa annua invading the greens. It seems to be the fate of most all putting greens that I have ever been around. If it were possible, and didn’t require all kinds of chemical interactions, I would most definitely prefer to manage creeping bentgrass greens. Many golfers are fans of Poa greens by the fact that it is all they have ever played. This summer I happened to play some of the finest bentgrass greens I have ever set foot on at Proghorn Golf Club. Personally I would take those greens over Poa any day. The benefits of bent over Poa are many. First off, bentgrass has a far better disease resistance. In the time of reduced pesticide programs this is important not only for reduced inputs but the costs of a fungicide program to prevent common Poa annua diseases can cost up to $20,000 a year. Another benefit of bentgrass is its deep rooting ability. The deeper the roots the less dependent you have to be on water during the heat stress times of the year. This saves water and labor costs.
Monday, November 15th, 2010