June and July are right around the corner and there is no better time to be prepared for fairway summer core aeration and improving the irrigation system. At a recent Turf Advisory Service visit in the Sacramento, CA area, a superintendent was good enough to share two tips: the first offers the potential to greatly improve clean-up efficiency of the clean-up process following core aeration, and the second involves adding irrigation stations easily, without the need to run wire back to the field satellite.
- Improving the clean-up following core aeration – This superintendent is already using one of the most efficient strategies available, which is the core processor from Toro™. In the past, this superintendent needed 3-4 passes with the core processor to effectively clean-up the plugs left on the surface following core aeration. He was then introduced to the Toro Titan split aeration tine, which is a 0.75 inch side-eject coring tine with a ‘blade’ in the center (see photo). The ‘blade’ acts to split the soil in half, thereby decreasing the time for the plugs to dry out and the time to clean up the debris. “Now, only one pass with the core processor does the job,” remarked this superintendent. These tines may not work well in all soil types, but you might consider a trial run.
- Adding an irrigation station in the field requires an open spot in the field satellite to wire from the satellite to the new head and the necessary plumbing. This Sacramento superintendent added a number of new sprinklers, with independent control and without the need to run wire back to the satellite. He used a system expander known as “Add-A-Station.” Assuming the field satellite has a spare station, part of the ‘Add-A-Station” is installed in the satellite, and the other part taps into the wire pair from an existing valve in close proximity to the desired head location. Wire is simply run from the existing sprinkler to the new head, and will offer the ability to run the two valves independently. For more information, visit: www.holmanindustries.com.au/products.asp?product=Add%20A%20Station.
It is always rewarding to meet with superintendents who have improved the efficiency of certain aspects of their operation and are willing to share their experiences. Best wishes for a great golfing season and don’t hesitate to call upon your local Green Section Agronomist to share your creative ideas.
Source: Brian Whitlark, firstname.lastname@example.org or 480-668-3368