Good from afar….far from Great

We don’t like settling for good. Good is going with the same approach time and time again, and not worrying about the results. Good is mediocrity. Instead, we focus on the end product, and must adapt our approach, given the year and conditions Mother Nature provides. Each year is different, which at times, creates frustration (for golfers and us), as we can’t manage the course the same way year in and out.

Right now, our Fescue areas are good, but we want them to be much better. In the fall of 2017, we applied a herbicide to selectively remove the grassy weeds from the stand of Fescue. However, it didn’t turn out how we wanted, and significantly injured the Fescue, even killing some of it where the product was overlapped. Read more about our native and Fescue areas in the link below for more background information.

http://www.mhccturf.com/?p=1388

The entire year of 2018, we couldn’t get new Fescue to germinate because of the of 2017 herbicide application, but we also could not rid the stand of grassy weeds, as those herbicides would have been too harsh for the weak Fescue. We made a dormant seeding of Fescue in October of 2018, and had a successful take this spring. Now the Fescue is filling in, and maturing.

This is where the mediocrity comes in. We want these areas to be as playable as possible. They need to function to be successful, and we feel we can get them better than good. This spring, we wanted the new and existing Fescue to mature before we would begin the campaign to rid them of grassy weeds. The grassy weeds have made the stand too thick to find balls, and play from. The grassy weeds spread aggressively, and can smother out the desirable Fescue if not managed. But remember that we’re not growing grass in a bubble. The thickness of greens, rough, Fescues, etc., is a sliding scale – they fluctuate with the weather, i.e., rainfall + heat. Those who thought the rough was easy 3-4 weeks ago, probably have a different opinion now since we’ve had over 6″ of rain and heat. The Fescue areas are in the same realm, they will fluctuate with the weather. Below you can see what is called lodging. When the plants get wet from a pounding rain, they fall over and interlock to each other, and struggle to stand back up, when they dry out.

However, in order for us to apply a successful selective herbicide, we have to mow the Fescue areas down, which started this week. It will be a slow process, as it has to be cut down in several stages. Once mown down, we’ll let the cut grass and weeds degrade for a few days, then make the herbicide application. During this time, please keep carts out of these areas. The Fescue will grow back to normal heights, within a few weeks, and will hopefully be thinner, and more playable, for the remainder of the season.

Thanks for your patience while we attempt to improve on “Good”.

Mike Manthey




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