Is the USGA Turf Advisory Service an investment or an expense? Many golf course superintendents say they cannot participate in the Turf Advisory Service because of the expense. I have always found the Turf Advisory Service to be an investment in excellence rather than an expense. The cost of the service is an initial investment that in my case has always returned much bigger savings (and opportunities for excellence) than the original cost. The information provided has led to direct and indirect savings without exception, every visit and every year. Recommendations on the latest chemicals and cultural practices have saved me time and money for years. I have reached career milestone after milestone by putting USGA recommendations to work throughout my operation.
I also place great value in developing relationships with the USGA agronomists. These guys see it all from one end of the golf business to the other, and their insights are the results of seeing programs that work under specific stresses and expectations. The validation of participation in the Turf Advisory Service is used throughout the golf industry as a measure of excellence, and yet there are still those who see only the expense, not the value or return on investment.
Fortunately, there are many individuals who maximize the use of the Turf Advisory Service. They are often inventive superintendents who demand results. They test the value of the service and how it can help them, and their operation reach new heights. They expect results each and every visit.
I have benefited from many years of partnerships that center around the USGA Turf Advisory Service. However, please do not take my word as to the question; is the Turf Advisory Service an investment or an expense? It would be much more effective if you put the Turf Advisory Service to the test. Host a visit this season and be sure to engage your USGA agronomist with enthusiasm and high expectations. You will not be disappointed, and the next time someone asks you whether the USGA Turf Advisory Service is an investment or an expense, you can answer with the confidence that only comes from personal experience.